May 10, 2021

Between Pina Bausch and Ulrike Meinhof | Culture

Between Pina Bausch and Ulrike Meinhof | Culture

In 1977, Dario Argento reached the aesthetic peak of his career with Suspiria, a film that amplified the supernatural breath of the previous Dark red (1975) to propose an expressionist exercise, whose frames glowed with the burned colors of the stained glass windows of a bewitched cathedral. The film spoke with the logic of dreams, symbols and pure form, burying under its vehement recitations of visual style references to the tradition of fairy tales, the thought of George I. Gurdjieff and Rudolf Steiner and the Satan (1934) by Edgar Ulmer, without forgetting the disturbing echoes contained in locations such as the Köningplatz in Munich, built by order of Hitler on the occasion of the Nuremberg Congress.


Address: Luca Guadagnino

Interpreters: Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton, Ingrid Caven, Mia Goth.

Gender: terror. Italy, 2018

Duration: 152 minutes

For Luca Guadagnino, the Suspiria de Argento was a dazzling adolescent to whom, now, this new reading not only pays tribute, but, in a notoriously risky dance step, discusses and reformulates. At first glance, it could give the impression that David Kajganich's script unearths what Argento was a symbolic substrate to convert into a discourse, but the many deviations from the original open new and stimulating possibilities of interpretation: the action is relocated to Berlin in the agitated autumn of 1977, decision that extirpates the roots of fairy tale to enhance a political context that, among other extremes, places the witches' cabal of the dance academy on the other side of the Baader-Meinhof terrorism mirror in its respective -And dispar- pulse with the guilty memory of an old order that gave rise to Nazism. The Susie Bannion, black sheep of a Mennonite family, which plays Dakota Johnson has little to do with the protagonist of the Suspiria original: from the sacrificial victim to an identity that allows channeling a feminist discourse full of edges, away from complacency.

Guadagnino practices the chromatic casting to use a palette of melancholic ocher that rescues the aesthetics of the New German Cinema. Dance scenes in which each corporal inflection justifies a cut of assembly, the resource of unlocking voices and bodies, camera movements that enlighten varnishes spaces and a disturbing sound design allied to build a new language of the sinister in this lucid nightmare presided over by a Tilda Swinton in key dark Pina Bausch, who speaks of an underground feminine power devoted to managing collective guilt and shame.


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