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Alan Jones on Mother of Tears

Mother of Tears

Reviews of Dario Argento’s Mother of Tears have been pouring in for some time now, some good, some bad, some split right down the middle, but, for many fans, the review they have been waiting for is the one penned by all-round Argento expert Alan Jones. After much anticipation, he has finally written a few words on the film, as well as its Rome premiere on Halloween.

As to the film itself, well, it’s not the conclusion to the SUSPIRIA and INFERNO trilogy any of us wanted to see.


While it’s easy to criticise LA TERZA MADRE (occasionally different to the US MOTHER OF TEARS version) for what it isn’t rather than what it actually is - a gory, campy supernatural romp - the main problem with the film is simple. The layers of ethereal artifice given by lush cinematography and arch style to the prior two classic films lent their fractured stories a further atmosphere of palpable fever dream unreality. Stripped of that, and saddled with Fasano’s dull realism (his DO YOU LIKE HITCHCOCK photography was superior), the film’s equally episodic narrative comes off as contrived, crude and kitsch. Why on earth didn’t Argento use again the vivid colour palettes that made SUSPIRIA and INFERNO so fabulous to look at? He had the chance in Jace and Adam’s jewel-bleeding concept, but axed it as too fairytale instead of embracing its rich atmospheric possibilities.


Claudio Argento said it best at the premiere performance. He told me, “For the general public it’s a good solid movie, for Dario’s fans I’m not so sure”.

For the full piece, which includes several photographs from the premiere, head over to Dark Dreams.

Posted: Tuesday, November 06, 2007 at 9:53 PM | Comments: 7
Categories: Cinema | Dario Argento | Halloween | Reviews



Ever since Alan Jones damned Il Cartaio and ever since he appeared to give a positive review to freaking House of the Dead, I'm afraid I've ignored his reviews.

So this news moves me neither way.

Posted by: Baron Scarpia, November 6, 2007 10:29 PM


Maybe, but his report does seem to tally with my worst fears, and, based on having seen the first and last five minutes of the film, I’d say there’s a pretty good chance that he’s right on the money on this occasion.

Posted by: Whiggles, November 6, 2007 10:39 PM


The film looks nothing like SUSPIRIA or INFERNO, which means all of his fans will hate it just like IL CARTAIO. Except for us maybe. :D

But at least it's better than that piece of junk STENDHAL SYNDROME, right Mr. Alan Jones?

Posted by: Marcus, November 7, 2007 12:48 AM


"Claudio Argento said it best at the premiere performance. He told me, "For the general public it's a good solid movie, for Dario's fans I'm not so sure"."


Posted by: ARCVILE, November 7, 2007 4:22 AM


I thought it was clear from the outset that La Terza Madre was not going to have a repeat of the lush visual palette as seen in its predecessors; Suspiria and Inferno. For the record I loved Il Cartaio.

Posted by: Avanze, November 7, 2007 7:37 AM


Why would I want to read or know anyone's opinion of a movie this anticipated, months before I'll get a chance to view it myself? I don't.

Posted by: tw, November 7, 2007 1:54 PM


I wonder which parts of the initial 2006 script survived in the final release. Not many, I suppose. That was a damn fine script, as reported by Alan Jones himself...

Posted by: MCP, November 8, 2007 11:22 PM

Comments on this entry and all entries up to and including June 30th 2009 have been closed. The discussion continues on the new Land of Whimsy blog:


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