Il Tempo del Sogna – Dream Time (2023) – Rustblade Blu-ray

May 19, 2024

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, director, producer, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

There’s nothing that hits quite like Italian horror cinema of the ’80s to mid-’90s. It is often outrageous, spectacularly gore-drenched, surreal and completely one-of-a-kind (even when it lifts elements from Hollywood fright flick blockbusters)… and just as it was rockin’ and rollin’, the wheels came off the cart shortly after the release of Michele Soavi’s kinda-sorta Dylan Dog adaptation, Cemetery Man in 1994.

How did this occur? Well, that is precisely what Nocturno magazine’s Davide Pulici aims to decipher in Claudio Lattanzi’s (1988’s Zombi 5: The Killing Birds) documentary Il Tempo del Sogna.

Following the journey from Lamberto Bava’s 1985 monsterpiece Demons, with a special focus given to the troubled production of it’s second sequel (which would eventually be retooled into Soavi’s The Church in 1989), on through late-era Fulci, and to late in the game stragglers such as 1997’s The Wax Mask (directed by effects maestro Sergio Stivaletti) we hear first-hand accounts of both the production of beloved fright flick favs of the era, but also the factors that put the last nail in the coffin of the spaghetti horror biz with everything from decreasing distribution to governmental regulations being a cause.

And speaking of Pulici and “first-hand accounts”, we hear from legends of the industry such as the aforementioned Soavi, Bava, and Stivaletti, as well as composers Claudio Simonetti and Fabio Frizzi, Starcrash director Luigi Cozzi, actresses Fiore Argento (Phenomena, Demons), Silvia Collatina (The House by the Cemetery), and Marina Loi (Zombi 3), and more… many of whom accidentally discover Pulici just chillin’ in their fuckin’ houses! While at times cheesy, these sequences are fun and well shot (just as an aside I’d be down for another Lattanzi helmed fright fest any day… I love me some Zombi 5!).

Not quite a straight-on documentary (those stalking sequences make that pretty clear), there is an incredible amount of information to be gleaned from listening to the above listed celebs speak, and through their telling it’s easy to imagine what it would have been like to be on set of some of the all-time classic Italian gore-fests!

Now for something weird that may just be me being the ding-bat I can be, but while there are special features to be had on this Blu-ray release from Rustblade Films, I couldn’t find the English language subtitles for these, so I’m not quite sure what information was given here. Features include; an interview with Pulici, an “in-depth study” by Youtuber Federico Frussciante, a still gallery, and the film’s trailer.

Entertaining, well-made and informative; Il Tempo del Sogna is a must own for lovers of the sinister cinematic sweet spot that is ’80s era Italian shockers!

 

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