We're about half way through the Underrated Series and have finally reached one of the big genres. I'm expecting lots…
City of the Living Dead
And the dead shall rise and walk the earth!
City of the Living Dead (Italian: Paura nella città dei morti viventi, also known as The Gates of Hell) is a 1980 Italian horror film directed by Lucio Fulci. It is the first installment of the unofficial Gates of Hell trilogy which also includes The Beyond and The House by the Cemetery. Fulci makes an uncredited cameo appearance as Dr. Joe Thompson in the film.
This was my introduction to Italian horror films which spiraled out of control into an obsessed frenzy after one watch. I remember renting this (as Gates of Hell) when I was still a teenager. I watched the tape, stopped it after the credits, picked up my jaw, rewound the tape and watched it again. I then walked a couple blocks to my friends house, invited her to my house where we could watch it together. In a single rental day span, I watched this movie three times.
While the notorious regurgitation scene (complete with an appearance by horror director Michele Soavi) in the cemetery BLEW MY MIND, I was hooked at the very beginning. Seeing a priest commit suicide while…
The creepy atmosphere and menacing track are stupendously terrifying! The plot is incoherent and considering this is suppose to be a zombie film they are not the focal point! The real star of the show is the Haunting Atmosphere Fulci unleashed upon the world!
As a zombie connoisseur I preferred the zombies from his earlier film Zombie! They were by far more realistic looking! And they were more abundant and provided some pretty gory scenes and weren't as camera shy as the ones in this film! In fact I found the disappearing reappearing zombies in this film pretty silly! But the scene where the zombies are on fire and it became blatantly obvious that they were Zombie dummies! And when…
Sixty in September: 1/60.
Holy god. My skin has crawled off me and into another dimension. I've seen The Beyond and House by the Cemetery and Zombi 2, and, lord, if nothing could have prepared me for this one.
Unease with The Cat o' Nine Tails, but I'm somewhere else entirely now. I've shuddered and grimaced with it and caught myself mumbling revulsions to myself out loud and rolling around. The face of zombie Emily! The crying blood and intestinal vomit!
Fabio Frizzi. My brain is reeling. Fulci. He gains more and more power over my imagination. It's tremendous. I scarcely know what to say.
Words will come. But this is the thing I'm looking for. It's startling to know something so bizarre and wonderful can possibly have existed -- can exist. I'm in some kind of sick and terrible love.
Part 13 of Hoop-Tober
"The soul that pines for eternity shall outspan death."
The first Italian horror movie I ever watched was Lucio Fulci’s Zombie (nearly two years ago). The version I watched was completely dubbed over in Italian with no English subtitles but I still enjoyed what was going on on-screen and everything was brutal and sickening but completely awesome. I wasn't entirely used to this type of hardcore horror (that eye-gouging scene still makes me squirm every time I see it) and it sent me into this state of mind similar to the state of mind I sometimes experience while trying out a delicious piece of food for the very first time (I’m…
There isn't much of a logical plot, there aren't any particularly good performances, but there is a scene where a woman vomits up all of her internal organs. Watch this movie.
It's her... Mrs. Holden. This morning she was inside a coffin at the funeral home, and now she's here in my kitchen!
Watching City of the Living Dead was like having Lucio Fulci shove his fingers directly into my brain, then proceed to wiggle, grate and squeeze them together until my grey matter turned into mush. Less a cinematic experience and more of an assault on the senses, and yet I couldn't look away because I was in awe of the unimaginable come to life on film.
Fulci uses the half hazard Lovecraft inspired plot as an excuse to string together gore, guts and mayhem. It's everything that made 70s and 80s horror great…
I think the Fulci brain squeeze has a higher simplicity to effectiveness ratio than any other gore effect.
Occasionally promises to bridge the gap between Fulci's hallucinatory flights of violent fancy and an actual plot, but no, it's just nonsensical. Ultimately there's enough memorable moments that it never becomes tedious (that bandsaw kill in particular is a jaw-dropping effect I can't figure out), but it never quite reaches the heightened delirium of The Beyond. B
I do believe this film has the most maggots of any movie. That might be wrong but I do know it has the most intestines thrown up by a lady. Plot: Gates of Hell open. They need to be shut(It's a huge mess with them open). The dead walk/lumber as usual but now they also pop in and out of space and time (bonus creepy move). As 80 or make it 90% of Italian horrors (of this time) leaps in logic are very present. I always think of them as a Horror Fever Dream. The very end scene makes no sense! Fabio Frizzi's soundtrack is a highlight (as most of his are).
The way Fulci creates this creepy Lovecraft-ian atmosphere with beautiful filming and surreal gore is something only best horror movies include. There's clearly some heart and soul put into this. Of course story-wise it makes no sense, but how many horror movies do it?
P.S. The vomit scene is the first thing on my record, that made me feel bad. Overall the gore in this movie is easily better than CGI-shitfests we have now.
Link to a review available here - letterboxd.com/coheed/list/cinema-of-the-abstract/
Scene where woman cries blood then vomits all internal organs = story of film criticism.
I have always been adamant that gore movies do not bother me as, in my mind, I have seen it all. Then I watched 'City of the Living Dead' and had to reevaluate myself. In a nutshell, this movie is pretty fucking horrible and at times I found myself shocked by what I was seeing. At the worst I was expecting something similar to 'Zombie Flesh Eaters' but this film made it look tame by comparison.
The story is fairly straight forward and is set up nicely from the beginning. A priest hangs himself in a cemetery located in what was formally known as Salem. In doing so he opens a gate to Hell and the dead begin to rise.…
Mmm I think this is my favourite of the trilogy. A surprisingly coherent story, Katherine MacColl is super slinky and the effects are utterly suburb. The editing and sound design can annoy and there are several scenes when its things are just starting to get juicy and it disjointedly cuts away. But still Fulci does not jip us in any way, shape or form and there are a plethora of excellent scenes of suspense, terror and gory mayhem. I love the supernatural elements combined with a general feeling of dread, and as before, the quality of the effects really raises this one for me. Impressively disgusted.
Nice one Fulci.
A priest's suicide opens the gates of hell and the dead start to rise.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
I'm already running out of adjectives to use when I refer to Fulci and his work.
This is another genius output from Fulci's twisted mind, just the atmosphere of the movie is enough to scare you sleepless. Through the entire movie we are nothing but spectators of the incoming evil that will take over Earth, and he manages to hold our attention at every minute of runtime, with tension that just grows and grows.
As it couldn't be different, it features of the goriest zombie make-ups I have ever seen, and even more gross death scenes (like a girl spitting out her guts by her mouth and a guy having his skull drilled). A must-see for any true horror film…
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