Suspiria (1977) (Synapse Two-Disc Edition) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Dario Argento
Starring: Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci
Rated: UR/2:35/1080p/Number of Discs 2
Available from Synapse Films
Susy Banyon is a young U.S. ballet student who arrives at a German dance academy. The violent and bloody murder of one of the students and her friend opens Susy’s eyes to the history of the mysterious academy. As the body count rises, Susy becomes involved in an increasingly labyrinthine tale of murder, black magic and madness.
Suspiria was one of the very first movies I ever wrote a review for when I started doing horror reviews in 2008. I admit that I probably didn’t get it like I should have back then. I didn’t appreciate the mood or the atmosphere yet, but time changes people and opinions do change. It comes along with maturing and believe it or not your movie taste can mature with the rest of you. Today I write this review a big fan of Suspiria. Considered by many to be Dario Argento’s masterpiece, Suspiria tells the story of a New York girl heading across seas to take part in a ballet class only to find a lot more than just dancing on nearly her first night there. The whole movie tosses at us such music and tone that it nearly feels like you are watching a dream at times. I always appreciated the look of Suspiria but now with this 4K scan on Blu-ray it looks even more amazing and details are easy to be seen. Even things you might have missed at times before. The movie is a spectacle from both a visionary and story side of things and you can tell that almost from the opening frame.
The movie also takes very violent turns from time to time as well. The first death in the film might be the most brutal but the way it is laid out makes it one of the most breathtakingly stylish death scenes you’ll see on screen. We get more bloody deaths along the way as our lead played by Jessica Harper tries to put everything that is going on together. So if you are a horror fan that likes blood, don’t think this is just about style because we have lots of brutality along the way as well. All in all, this is a horror film that stands the test of type and mixes trippy stuff perfectly with gore and atmosphere. If you held off for the Synapse release on a regular Blu-ray and passed on the steelbook you won’t be let down. The Blu-ray transfer looks amazing and you have plenty of nice extras on these two discs. I hope the screenshots below does this one justice. While I didn’t dislike the Austrailian release from Umbrella at all, this is as good if not a better release and transfer.
– NEW 4K restoration of the original uncut, uncensored Italian 35mm camera negative exclusively done by Synapse Films, with color correction supervised and approved by Suspiria Director of Photography, Luciano Tovoli
– Original 4.0 1977 English language LCRS sound mix not heard since the theatrical release in 1977, presented in high-resolution DTS-HD MA 96kHz/24-bit audio, with newly-translated removable English SDH subtitles
– Italian 5.1 surround mix, with removable English subtitle translation
– Two audio commentaries by authors and Argento scholars, Derek Botelho, David Del Valle and Troy Howarth
– Do You Know Anything About Witches? – 30 minute Suspiria visual essay written, edited and narrated by Michael Mackenzie
– Suzy in Nazi Germany – Featurette on the German locations from Suspiria
– A Sigh from the Depths: 40 Years of Suspiria – All-new anniversary retrospective on the making of the film and its influence on cinema
– Olga’s Story – Interview with star Barbara Magnolfi
– Original theatrical trailers, TV spots and radio spots
– International Classics English “Breathing Letters” opening credit sequence from U.S. release
– Alternate All-English opening and closing credits sequences, playable via seamless branching
– Reversible Cover Art created by Joel Robinson
Quality of Transfer: 100%
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