HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Tyger Tyger
Filmmaker's House, The
Man Standing Next, The
Rock, Paper and Scissors
Batman: The Long Halloween Part One
Salaam Bombay!
Boss Level
My Heart Can't Beat Unless You Tell It To
Edge of the World
PTU
Superdeep
Insignificance
Treasure City
Piccadilly
Parallel
Invasión
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Agony
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Lemebel
Hands of Orlac, The
Cats
Death has Blue Eyes
Caveat
Kala Azar
Duplicate
Flashback
Gunda
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Vanquish
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
Homewrecker
   
 
Newest Articles
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
   
 
  Agony Asia Goes ARGH
Year: 2020
Director: Michele Civetta
Stars: Asia Argento, Jonathan Caouette, Salerno Claudia, Nick Daly, Ninetto Davoli, Giulia Di Quilio, Monica Guerritore, Molly Jane McCarthy, Franco Nero, Rade Serbedzija, Simone Wasserman
Genre: HorrorBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Isidora (Asia Argento) is an Italian artist with a husband, Michael (Jonathan Caouette) and young daughter (Salerno Claudia, voiced by Molly Jane McCarthy), and they all live together in a swanky New York City apartment. However, one day she is admiring the little girl's artwork when Isidora feels a great disturbance in the Force, and sense that something important has occurred even if she does not know what it specifically is. The answer arrives soon enough, a courier who has a bunch of legal documents which state that her mother has died recently and bequeathed her Tuscan mansion and its surroundings to her. This comes as a surprise - she thought her mother had died thirty years ago.

Not a bad beginning to a horror movie, it sets up some suspense and mystery for our heroine to investigate, and so it was Isidora took her family and after stopping off to remonstrate with her father (Rade Serbedzija), who handily runs a gallery and kept the secret about her mother from her for no good reason he can come up with, they all head off to Italy. There follows some touristy scene setting as the locals may appear sinister, but the mansion has an Old World charm that a little fixing up would improve no end, and the landscape is romantic enough to have Isidora consider inheriting this place is not so bad after all, but the question of what happened to her mother preys on her mind so much that she seems to be flying off the rails as she did.

So it was the old prophecy comes in cycles plot, really, as the lead had been, it appears, predicted to go crazy just as her mother had, but the mere presence of Isidora in this mansion is detrimental to her mental health as she gets Gothic and does that thing they do in conspiracy movies, pores over old texts, books and paintings in full-on Da Vinci Code manner to get to the bottom of the sinister heart of her history. Or at least, that was apparently the idea, only in a watch that screams "troubled production" more often than, well, Asia screams, there was a lot half-finished about Agony that made it hard to get along with, never mind invest in. It had actually been filmed in 2017, but taken a few years to assemble, and as it was directed by Argento's ex Michele Civetta, one wonders what kind of relationship they had while shooting.

Over-relying on the atmosphere of the rambling house was all very well, but there were only so many shots of solarised eyes and a "witch" - possibly Isidora's mother - superimposed over the action you could take. As well as the shabby nature of the results on the screen, not to mention the dodgy dubbing on the little girl, there was the matter of the star being in the strange position of both accusing people through the #MeToo movement and being accused through the #MeToo movement which one can only assume made the producers reluctant to get this completed and released. Now it had been sneaked out into the world in this weird, formless arrangement, assuming Asia had any fans left they would be intrigued to see what she was like in this one, the answer to that being that she started out stilted and ended up hysterical with nothing in between. Agony, originally titled The Executrix, was effectively a curiosity, casting Franco Nero in a small role with an ignominious conclusion, and Ninetto Davoli from the Pier Paolo Pasolini movies as a permagrinning townsperson who knows more than he lets on, but as with all of this, you doubt even the filmmakers knew what was going on here. A definite curate's egg of Gothic.

[Thunderbird release this on digital platforms on June 14th 2021.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 152 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: