31 Days of Horror 2018: Day 20- Don’t Look Now

Posted October 20, 2018 by Thomas James Juretus in Movies

Day 20 kiddies, and we go back in time for what some call a classic, the 1973 supernatural mystery Don’t Look Now. Based on a story by Daphne Du Maurier (The Birds), the film tells the story of a couple, Laura (Julie Christie) and John Baxter (Donald Sutherland), who suffer a tragedy when their daughter drowns. Afterwards, they go to Venice, where John works on restoring an old church and they meet Wendy (Clelia Matania) and her psychic blind sister, Heather (Hilary Mason). Strange occurrences with supernatural overtones beset the couple, with things growing more dangerous for them the longer they remain in Venice. 6/10 stars

Many have hailed the film, directed by Nicolas Roeg (The Man Who Fell to Earth, The Witches), as a masterpiece, though for myself this just didn’t hold up as well as other genre films from the same era. Sutherland (Invasion of the Body Snatchers) and Christie (Demon Seed) are fine in their roles, though you never quite get too attached to them. Mason (David Copperfield) fares best as the blind psychic sister, who tries to warn the couple of the danger they’re in. The cinematography is fairly good, with a nice use of the repeating bright red color that was the color of the daughter’s coat when she drowned (M. Night Shyamalan would use this trick decades later in The Sixth Sense). The ending is a nice little twist, but hardly the shocking surprise for modern horror audiences that it might have been for those in 1973. For those who like to check out more classic movies, the film is available on DVD in a very nicely packaged part of the Criterion Collection.

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Thomas James Juretus