31 July 2014

Shock (1977)
93 min.
Directed by Mario Bava.
With Daria Nicolodi, John Steiner, David Colin Jr., Ivan Rassimov, Paul Costello, Lamberto Bava, Nicola Salerno.
Master Bava's last film is this interesting character study.

Dora (played excellently by Daria Nicolodi) is a wife and mother who's emotionally troubled after her addict husband dies of a drug overdose.

Remarried to new hubby Bruno (Steiner), Dora tries to pick up the pieces of her life and move on.

It won't be that easy. Her son Marco (Colin) begins exhibiting super strange behavior, verbally assaulting her, watching her when she showers, even trying to molest her.

Is Marco so unhinged he would try to kill his own mother? And considering Dora's fragile psyche, would anyone believe her cries for help?

But truth be told, the dark secrets behind Dora's psychological scars haven't even begun to emerge...

Also known as Beyond the Door II - a dumb and unrelated title to the 1974 possession thriller starring Juliet Mills - Bava was assisted on this by his son Lamberto who co-wrote the screenplay and acted as assistant director.

Shock contains all the stylish sequences we've come to expect from these two, as well as a handful of disturbingly graphic sequences.

Although this may not appeal to all horror fans due to its slowmoving nature, Nicolodi is in fine form and the finale is a perfectly orchestrated buildup to individual insanity.

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