The Stendhal Syndrome (1996)



US Blue Underground 2 disc DVD edition - region all

 


So, i re-watched this1996 neo-giallo again in October 2021 and i found it to be very uneven. Argento obviously meant to be
artistic here with the entering into paintings and with our protegee suffering from The Stendahl Syndrome. Yes, it's quite
original and interesting, with a great (and sometimes even disturbing) soundtrack from Ennio Morricone and with the beauty
of Asia. There are some truly impressive scenes, as the dream when the painting turns into a door and takes Asia to the crime-
scene in Rome and the opening scene at the Uffici Gallery in Florence when Asia is hit by the Syndrome and falls into the
painting of Icaros falling into the sea and kisses a big ugly fish .... wow! One of Argento's best ever.

BUT, then there's the atrocious acting from everybody in this film, and the worst culprit is Asia, perhaps due to a badly
written script by Dario Argento (cringy even sometimes). It just doesn't work, i don't know why but probably because of
Dario losing his Golden Touch by 1996 (i belong to the one's that think "Opera" was the last Great film of his).

The Old Italian VHS edition

Asia Argento plays the young crime cop Anna Manni and she's investigating the crimes of a serial rapist and killer.
After receiving information she goes to Florence to hunt down the perp, and the perp (Thomas Kretschmann) is
watching her every step, and it really is more of him hunting her.
Asia is really a YOUNG crime cop and i seriously doubt that 20-21 year old would have been a crime inspector
and with a gun handling a case of serial killings on her own (Asia is born in 1975) but who knows.

The Stendhal syndrome is a state where someone has been overwhelmed by watching great art and could faint
and it's named after the french 19th century writer Stendhal AKA Henri Beyle.

The film on Blue Underground's 2 disc DVD edition is presented in anamorphic widescreen 1.66:1 with italian audio
5.1 or 2.0 with english subtitles, or with an english audio dub DTS-ES 6.1, 5.1 or 2.0, a trailer extra.

Disc 2: Interview with Dario Argento (20 minutes), Interview with Graziella Magherini - psychologist (20 minutes),
Interview with Sergio Stivaletti (16 minutes), Interview with Luigi Cozzi (21 minutes) and with production designer
Massimo Geleng (22 minutes).
The film was re-mastered from a 35 mm original under the guidance of cinematographer Giuseppe Rotunno

 

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