Dark Glasses Review

Dario Argento is an Italian director, who is considered one of the foremost directors in the horror genre. He has directed Susperia (1977), Deep Red, Tenebrae, and Phenomena in his career just to name a few. He even acted in a film earlier this year in the case of Vortex. His latest film in his long and storied career after Dracula 3D in 2012, in which he took time off, is Dark Glasses.

Diana (Ilenia Pastorelli) is a woman who seems to have it all. A nice apartment and a career making good money as a call girl. Unbeknown to her a killer is lurking around stalking women of the night. One evening as she’s leaving an appointment at a local hotel she is attacked by the killer, but she fends him off and can get to her car. While she’s driving away he comes up to her in a white van. She is trying to speed away and inadvertently crashes into a car with an Asian family in it. She ended up in the hospital and lost her site.

One of the key aspects of the film is how this woman who was in complete control of her life has to cope with not being able to see and how she can get back to a normal life again. It’s easier said than done. Because she decides to get involved in some things she shouldn’t and this causes her life to unravel even further than it already has. She gets help from a woman, Rita (Asia Argento) who deals with blind people and she also gets a seeing-eye dog, she still stretches her wings too far and puts her nose where she shouldn’t.

This film has contrivances because of the main character. The script is written in a way where the main character keeps causing more and more problems for herself. Regarding the stalker and the law who are after her for a different reason than what she does for a living. Even when she asks for help from her new friend this situation gets worse. The killer is still on the loose and because of her dumb decisions, he knows how to find her. This is bad writing on the part of Argento and Franco Ferrini.

This is a typical Giallo film. It has blood and violence and exploitation of women, but it doesn’t do anything or say anything about how this kind of thing is happening all over the place and that to me is a travesty. The writers missed an opportunity to give this film a good message instead they fell back on popular tropes from the past. It’s sad when filmmakers the likes of Argento, who can put a positive message in his films, rely on contrivances and old ways to create new films.

If you are a fan of the horror genre and want another cookie-cutter horror film that is like so many more from the past then this might be for you. I on the other hand want more substance in my films, horror or otherwise. Dark Glasses starts out good but goes down a road I’ve seen so many times before. The supporting cast was fine and the overall style was ok but Argento and company missed a genuine opportunity to say something positive about an old genre that has gotten stale except for a handful of standouts in the past decade or so. This is another letdown for me.

2 stars 

Dan Skip Allen

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