News and Reviews
Any diehard reader of ShockTillYouDrop.com should be intimately familiar with the Giallo style of horror filmmaking that came out of Italy in the late '60s and early '70s, gory and gruesome affairs that made cult figures out of the likes of Dario Argento and Mario Bava. Those films have been hugely influential on American horror from the original Friday the 13th to the works of Eli Roth and Rob Zombie.
British filmmaker Peter Strickland's Berberian Sound Studio is not a Giallo film but it pays loving tribute to them by going behind the scenes in an Italian recording studio where they're doing voiceover and sound FX work for one of those grisly Italian horror films. Toby Jones (Frank Darabont's The Mist) stars as Gilderoy, a British sound engineer who travels to Italy to work in a studio doing sound FX for what he thinks is an "equestrian film" but turns out to be a gruesome horror film involving the brutal torture of nuns. Eventually, the inner politics of the small Italian studio and the imagery he's forced to endure starts to get to the meek sound engineer and starts to affect his mind in strange and negative ways.
Writer-director Peter Strickland's dark thriller Berberian Sound Studio has revealed a dark, moody trailer that you can check out in the player below. Starring Toby Jones, Tonia Sotiropoulou, Susanna Cappellaro, Cosimo Fusco, Eugenia Caruso, the film takes place in 1976 and follows a mild-mannered British sound engineer named Gilderoy (Jones), who arrives in Rome to work on the post-synchronized soundtrack to "The Equestrian Vortex," a tale of witchcraft and murder set inside an all-girl riding academy.
But as Gilderoy begins to work on this unexpectedly terrifying project, it's his own mind that holds the real horrors. As the line between film and reality blurs, is Gilderoy working on a film - or in one? Berberian Sound Studio is slated to hit theaters in a limited release on June 14, the same day that it becomes available on VOD and iTunes.
Here's the synopsis...
1976: Berberian Sound Studio is one of the cheapest, sleaziest post-production studios in Italy.
Only the most sordid horror films have their sound processed and sharpened in this studio. Gilderoy, a naive and introverted sound engineer from England is hired to orchestrate the sound mix for the latest film by horror maestro, Santini.
Peter Strickland’s Berberian Sound Studio picked up the most wins at the 2012 British Independent Film Awards over the weekend. The film won four Moët British Independent Film Awards in the following categories: Best Director (Peter Strickland), Best Actor (Toby Jones) Best Achievement in Production and Best Technical Achievement (Joakim Sundström, Stevie Haywood AMPS IPS - Sound Design).
Commenting on the wins Philip Knatchbull, CEO of Curzon Artificial Eye said, “Artificial Eye are delighted that Berberian Sound Studio has been honoured with four awards at this year's British Independent Film Awards and are proud to continue supporting outstanding British film talent."
The giallo-esque opening credits sequence of Berberian Sound Studio has found its way online and we had to share it because it is arguably the only thing worthwhile in the entire film. (Thanks to our pal Sam Zimmerman over at Fangoria for the heads-up.)
The credits capture the tone of the '70s and serve as the introduction to the film-within-the-film The Equestrian Vortex, a production Berberian's main protagonist, played by Toby Jones, is at work on. Unfortunately, Equestrian is far more fascinating than Berberian Sound Studio.
I go into more detail about that in this review. Berberian Sound Studio hits next year.
It's post-Fantastic Fest wrap-up time...
ShockTillYouDrop.com's Ryan Turek and FEARnet.com's Lawrence Raffel are back from the 8th annual Austin, Texas event and they're here to tell you about the best and worst films. Listen in as they weigh in on Antiviral, American Mary, Frankenweenie, Berberian Sound Studio, Come Out and Play, The American Scream and more!
Berberian Sound Studio is quite possibly one of the most difficult films I've watched all year. That's a pity, too, as the premise was very promising and very, very exciting.
Depending on what you've read about the story, the popular synopsis going around says the film is about a British sound engineer who is hired by an Italian producer and director to work on their '70s horror film. Soon after, "life imitates art."
That's partially correct. Toby Jones plays Gilderoy, and yes, he's a sound engineer working on a Suspiria-esque film called The Equestrian Vortex. Whether life actually imitates art for Gilderoy remains to be seen. Indeed, some trippy business does occur, but none of it makes sense. More than anything, Berberian Sound Studio is tantamount to monotonous, well-photographed behind-the-scenes footage of a film production - dull, pretentious self-important posturing that doesn't amount to much and is more frustrating than absorbing.
Fantastic Fest has announced thee final installment of programming for Fantastic Fest 2012, including the world premiere screening of The Collection, the anticipated sequel to The Collector. Fantastic Fest will take place September 20-27 in Austin, Texas at the Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar.
When Elena's (Emma Fitzpatrick) friends take her to a secret party at an undisclosed location, she never imagined she would become the latest victim of The Collector, a psychopathic killer. The Collector kidnaps and transports her to an abandoned hotel he's transformed into his own private maze of torture and death. Upon learning of his daughter's disappearance, Elena's wealthy father (Christopher McDonald) hires a group of mercenaries to retrieve her from the vicious grips of The Collector. These mercenaries coerce Arkin (Josh Stewart), the only man to have escaped the wrath of this heinous monster, to lead them through the gruesome labyrinth. Now, Arkin finds himself fighting for his own life in order to save Elena. "The Collection," directed by Marcus Dunstan and written by Dunstan and Patrick Melton, is a suspense horror film with nonstop thrills at every turn, starring Josh Stewart (The Dark Knight Rises), Emma Fitzpatrick (The Social Network), and Christopher McDonald (Requiem for a Dream).
LD Entertainment will release The Collection in theaters November 30th.
Head inside for the final wave of films at this year's festival!
The first trailer for Berberian Sound Studio has arrived, giving you a better look at this Toronto International Film Festival entry starring Toby Jones and directed by Peter Strickland.
Jones (The Mist) plays Gilderoy, a man hired to orchestrate the sound mix for the latest film by Italian horror maestro, Santini (Antonio Mancino). As time and realities shift, Gilderoy is lost in a spiral of sonic and personal mayhem, and has to confront his own demons in order to stay afloat.
UK helmer Peter Strickland stepped behind the camera for a slice of cinema called Berberian Sound Studio. An odd title that I suspect will change into something more generic if/when it gets U.S. distribution. But don't let its moniker turn you off, the film is set against the backdrop of a Italian horror production in the late 1970s.
Toby Jones (The Mist) plays Gilderoy, a man hired to orchestrate the sound mix for the latest film by Italian horror maestro, Santini (Antonio Mancino). As time and realities shift, Gilderoy is lost in a spiral of sonic and personal mayhem, and has to confront his own demons in order to stay afloat.
The film will play to Toronto International Film Festival audiences next month and we've got a peek via a handful of images.