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Demoni (1985)

Country of Origin: Italy
Year of Production: 1985
Running Times: 83 mins 52 seconds (UK - 2nd video release) 83 mins 53 seconds (UK - 1st video release) 86 mins 16 seconds (UK - theatrical (release cancelled)) 88 mins (USA - DVD) 89 mins (USA - theatrical; 1st video release; laserdisc) 94 mins (USA - 2nd video release) 95 mins (Italy - theatrical; France - theatrical) 104 mins? (Italy - video)
Format: Eastmancolor 35mm
Ratio: 1.66:1
Sound: Dolby Stereo

CREDITS

PRODUCER
Production Company: DACFilm
Producer: Dario Argento
Production Manager: Eros LaFranconi
Unit Manager: Guido De Laurentiis

SCRIPT
Script: Dario Argento, Lamberto Bava, Dardano Saccheti, Franco Ferrini
Story: Dardano Sacchetti

DIRECTION
Director: Lamberto Bava
Assistant Director: Michele Soavi

PHOTOGRAPHY
Director of Photography: Gianlorenzo Battaglia
Assistant Camera: Enzo Frattari, Claudio Nannuzzi, Daniele Cimini, Federico Martucci
Gaffer: Cristo Verrillo
Key Grip: Franco Serantoni
Film Stock: Eastmancolor Kodak
Lighting and Camera Equipment: Ciack Italia
Laboratory: Luciano Vittori
Raw Stock: Eastmancolor Kodak
Stills: Franco Bellomo, Gianfranco Caira

EDITING
Supervising Editor: Franco Fraticelli
Editor: Piero Bozza
1st Assistant Editor: Roberto Priori
2nd Assistant Editors: Sergio Fraticelli, Fabrizio Fraticelli
Post Production (US Version): Lajon Productions
Post Production Supervisor (US Version): Lawrence Applebaum

MUSIC
Music: Claudio Simonetti, Edvard Grieg (from Peer Gynt suite; In the Hall of the Mountain King)
Songs Performed By: Rick Springfield (Walking on the Edge); Mötley Crue (Save Our Souls); Pretty Maids (Night Danger); Go West (We Close Our Eyes); The Adventures (Send My Heart); Billy Idol (White Wedding); Accept (Fast As a Shark); Saxon (Everybody Up)
Music Producer: Universo Film

SOUND
Dubbing Editor: Nick Alexander
Sound Mixer: Raffaele De Luca
Boom Operator: Angelo Amattulli
Re-Recording: International Recording
Re-Recording Engineer: Romano Pampaloni
Dolby Sound Consultant: Federico Savina
Special Sound Effects: Studio Anzellotti
Creative Sound Design (US Version): Burton Lee Harry, Dennis Patterson, Gabrielle Gilbert, Joe Earle

COSTUMES AND MAKE-UP
Make Up: Rosario Prestopino
Supervising Hair: Teodora Bruno
Hair: The Sargassis
Wigs: Rocchetti Carboni
Costumes: Marina Malavasi, Patrizia Massaia
Seamstress: Carla Latini
Assistant Set Dresser: Eivia pascucci

SPECIAL MAKE UP
Special Make Up Creations: Sergio Stivaletti
Special Make Up Effects: Rosario Prestopino
Special Make Up Assistants: Barbara Morosetti, Sami Habib Ahmed

SPECIAL EFFECTS
Special Construction Models: Angelo Mattei
Special Stage Effects: Corridori & Co
Titles / Opticals: Aldo Mafera

DESIGN AND SET CONSTRUCTION
Production Designer: Davide Bassan
Prop Master: Maurizio Jacopelli

MISCELLANEOUS
Script Continuity: Daniela Tonti
Production Secretaries: Fabrizio Diaz, Rita Friggeri
Production Accountant: Ferdinando Caputo
Paymaster: Renato Rinaldo
Transportation: Romana Trasporti and Co
Insurance Consultant: Cinesicurta
Unit Publicist: Enrico Lucherini

LOCATIONS
Locations: West Berlin, West Germany; IN.CI.R. De Paolis Studios; Rome, Italy

CAST
Natasha Hovey (Cheryl / Sharon / Sharel)
Urbano Barberini (George / Giorgio)
Karl Zinny (Ken)
Fiore Argento (Hannah)
Paolo Cozzo (Kate / Kathy)
Fabiola Toledo (Carmen)
Nicoletta Elmi (Ingrid the usherette)
Stelio Candelli (Frank)
Nicole Tessier (Ruth)
Gereta (Marie) Giancarlo (Rosemarie)
Bobby Rhodes (Tony)
Guido Baldi (Tommy)
Bettina Ciampolini (Liz)
Giuseppe Cruciano (Hot Dog)
Sally Day
Eliana Hoppe (Edith, the girl in the tent in horror film)
Jasmine Maimone (Nancy in horror film)
Marcello Modugno (Bob in horror film)
Peter Pitsch (Baby Pig)
Pasqualino (Lino) Salemme (Ripper)
Enrica Maria Scrivano (Nina)
Alex Serra (Werner)
Michele Soavi (masked man / Jerry in horror film)
Claudio Spadaro (Liz's lover)
Lamberto Bava (large man in subway - uncredited)
Giovanni Frezza (Kurt, the boy in the jeep - uncredited)
Sergio Stivaletti (victim - uncredited)
Goffredo Ungaro (jeep driver - uncredited)
Sami Habib Ahmed (demon emerging from Kathy - uncredited)

PLOT SUMMARY

Patrons at a preview screening of a horror film are possessed by a demonic force that seems to emanate from the film itself. The survivors find themselves sealed into the cinema, fighting a losing battle against the ever-growing hordes of zombies.

CAPSULE REVIEW

Dreadful nonsense from people who should have known better. The film was a huge hit at the time but just looks embarrassing and hopelessly dated now. Lamberto Bava shows no indication of having even the slightest clue how to direct a film (whatever happened to the talent on show in Macabro (1980)?) and the soundtrack is the same appalling mix of heavy metal and bland American AOR that was afflicting producer Dario Argento's own films at the time. Avoid at all costs.

AVAILABILITY

France
Theatrical Distributor: Actrum Films

International
World Sales: Intra Films

Italy
Video Distributor: Creazioni Home Video; Mondadori Video
Theatrical Distributor: Titanus Distribuzione

UK
Theatrical Distributor: Avatar (the film was submitted to the BBFC and shown to the press but the planned theatrical release was abandoned)
Video Distributor: Avatar (CFV 4060) (1987); Caleco Direct Videog (CALD 2) (August 1996)
DVD Distributor: DIVID 2000

USA
Theatrical Distributor: Ascot Films
Video Distributor: New World Video (March 1988); Anchor Bay (1992)
Laserdisc Distributor: Image Entertainment (ID5200NW) (1988)
DVD Distributor: Anchor Bay (16 March 1999)

CENSORSHIP HISTORY

Australia
Rating: R

France
Rating: 18

Italy
Rating: 18

Germany
Rating: banned

UK
Rating: 18
The film was submitted to the BBFC by Avatar Communications in January 1987 and the film was awarded its 18 certificate at the expense of 2 minutes 4 seconds of cuts. The film was never given a theatrical release but turned up on video instead with 1 minute 5 seconds of cuts. DIVID 2000's 29 May 2000 UK video and DVD release claimed to be a "Director's Cut" though it was in fact still subject to BBFC interference. All of the gore had now been restored (it had been trimmed in all previous video releases) but now the 42 second scene in which Nina has cocaine scraped from her breast with a razor blade is missing. This scene had appeared in all other releases of the film.

USA
Rating: unrated

TIMELINE

1985
June

Day Unknown: Shooting begins

July
Day Unknown: Shooting ends

October
4: Italy - premiere
5: Italy - theatrical release in Rome and Milan

1986
May

30: USA - theatrical release

October
1: France - theatrical release in Paris

1987
January

Day Unknown: Rated by the BBFC

1988
March

Day Unknown: USA - Video release

1996
August

Day Unknown: UK - video re-release

1999
March

16: USA - DVD release

2000
May

29: UK - DVD release

POSTER TAGS

They will make cemeteries their cathedrals and the cities will be your tombs.

Their Evil Becomes an Orgy of Bloodshed

ALTERNATIVE TITLES

Demons - UK / USA title
Démons - French title
Dance of the Demons - German title
Dämonen 2 - German theatrical title
Demons 1 - alternative title

LINKS

SEQUEL
Demoni II - Il Succubi Retorno (1987)

SEE ALSO
Demoni 3 (1991)
La chiesa (1988)
The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985)
Circuito Chiuso (1978)
Dellamorte dellamore (1994)
La maschera del demonio (1960)
Quattro mosche di velluto grigio (1971)
Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Onibaba (1964)
The Evil Dead (1982)

INCLUDES FOOTAGE FROM
Nosferatu: Phantom der Nacht (1979)

FOOTAGE INCLUDED IN
Il mondo dell'orrore di Dario Argento (1985)

REFERENCES

MAGAZINES

Cinema d'Oggi vol.19 no.16 (16 October

The Dark Side no.47 (July 1995) p.18 (UK)
review (by Allan Bryce)

Filmcritica no.368 (October 1986) pp.485-494 (Italy)
interview

Hollywood Reporter vol.293 no.34 (10 September 1986) pp.3, 17 (USA)
credits, review (by Dennis Fischer)

Monthly Film Bulletin vol.54 no.639 (April 1987) p.112 (UK)
credits, synopsis, review (by Kim Newman)

Necronomicon 6 pp.9-11
illustrated review

Segnocinema vol.6 no.22 (March 1986) pp.72-73 (Italy)
review

Time Out no.861 (18 February 1987) p.23 (UK)
review (by Anne Billson)

Variety 20 November 1985 p.14 (USA)
review (by Yung)

BOOKS

Art of Darkness pp.248-249; 291; 299
illustrated review (by Chris Gallant); credits; video data

Aurum Encyclopedia of Film: Horror (2nd edition) p.397
credits, review

Spaghetti Nightmares p.165
credits; interview with Lamberto Bava

OTHER SOURCES

Film Index International
credits

screen
credits

KEYWORDS

cinemas, demons, helicopters, motorcycles, possession, transformations

CONTRIBUTORS

Billy Camacho; Kevin Lyons


Last Updated: 1 January, 2009

 


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