Friday, 2 December 2011

Dont Look Now Review

                                       Fig One - Film Cover

Don't Look Now is a 1973 thriller film directed by Nicolas Roeg. Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland star as a married couple whose lives become complicated after meeting two elderly sisters in Venice, one of whom claims to be clairvoyant and informs them that their recently deceased daughter is trying to contact them and warn them of danger. It is an independent British and Italian co-production, filmed in England and Italy, and adapted from the short story by Daphne du Maurier.

         Fig two - Scene of death.

“Boiled down to its simplest elements, Don't Look Now is the story of John and Laura Baxter (Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie), whose daughter Christine dies in the film's opening scene, drowned in a pond behind their home in Britain while trying to retrieve a ball”.(Brayton 2008) The film starts of as calm with a little girl in a bright red coat playing outside while her Mum and Dad are inside talking when John has a six sense and runs outside towards a lake and finds his drowned daughter picks her up and screams and tries to revive her but it is too late, for a start of a film what was calm and then to have a scene of a drowned child captures the attention of its audience with a firm grip.

1973 film remains one of the great horror masterpieces, working not with fright, which is easy, but with dread, grief and apprehension” (Ebert 2002) this plunges the audience into lives of the married couple who are in great grief over the death of the daughter and how the couple go about dealing with it. John and Laura move to Venice as John is being contracted by the bishop the church he’s rebuilding. 

“Arguably the subtlest giallo ever made, it's a film to heighten the sense”s.9Croce 2010) Most of the film is set in Venice where it has a gothic and depressive feel about the place, helping the audience feel the grief of the couple. Laura finds peace in two old ladies who tell her about their deceased daughter and trying to contact them to let them know she’s happy and with them, while John doesn’t believe in the two women and becomes slightly detached from his wife and deals with it in his own way becoming insane, and starts to see things such as his wife on a boat with the two women who got a plane back to England to see their son was unwell and after finding his wife is fine and is on her way back to Italy, he ends up following a little girl wearing a bright red coat like the one his daughter wore at the beginning of the film into a trap where the little figure of a girl turns round and isn’t a hallucination of his daughter but an old woman who strikes a killing blow to John. The hallucination John had of his wife on a boat with the two old women in black was not a hallucination but a vision as it was of his funeral.

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