Dec 18

Imago Mortis

imagomortisGenre: Horror
Year: 2009
Country: Italy

Director: Stefano Bessoni
Starring: Geraldine Chaplin, Oona Chaplin, Alberto Amarilla, Leticia Dolera, Alex Angulo


Un misterio oculto durante siglos sera por fin revelado


Bruno is a film student at the FW Murnau Film School. The students are getting a new assignment which is to take a picture of something that represents the theme they are given. While working on his assignment, he starts to get morbid visions of a dead man. While venturing around in the film school he finds a strange box with a device that goes on your head with a camera attached to it. After showing this to his class, the school demands that he returns these items to them immediately but now they are missing from his room.

It turns out that this device is created by a scientist named Girolamo back in the 1600s. The device was used to pop out the eyes of his victims and capture the last image of the victim saw before they die by taking the eyes and putting them into the camera. While Bruno is searching to find the lost device again, people seem to end up missing in his school and time is starting to run out for Bruno.

When I watch a new horror movie from Italy these days I always have some hope that it will be an excellent and successful movie that will bring more genre movies in production from the fantastic country. Usually however, the newer ones fail to create any buzz and mostly range from poor to ok in quality.

Imago Mortis (translated into Image of Death if I’m correct) is directed by Stefanio Bessoni, a Roma-born filmmaker who hasn’t done a lot of movies yet, and none that I’ve seen. He does display some talent with this movie, but since the plot didn’t do much for me it got kind of wasted. It will be interesting to see if he will be able to continue working steadily in the future to improve his craft.

As mentioned, the story didn’t do much for me, and neither did the characters. It deals a lot with arts but I don’t think I really “got it” and understood what the filmmakers was trying to tell here. It does show a little influence from giallo movies mixed with modern spanish horror and also has some influences from german cinema, including the naming of the film school (F.W. Murnau) and some of the character names like Professor Caligari. Alberto Amarilla plays the main character Bruno, a character that is not your common strong and heroic male lead. The co-stars do a decent job, in some scenes it is apparent that they aren’t used to speaking english, but they do well enough so it never becomes a distraction.

Imago Mortis is a decent output from Italy. It starts out a little interesting, but it becomes a little dull after a short while. It never builds up good suspense and it left me very apathetic after a while. I hope Bessoni will be able to continue making movies, but I can’t give this one a thumbs up.




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