Straight-blade razors and failed uprisings

Back after a hiatus from here with merely a public service announcement of sorts. All of you really should get your hands on Andrez Zulawki's 1972 film The Devil. Utterly stunning, bleak as hell, political-allegory horror pic.

It is a delirious, haunted mess of a film, that for me reads as a fellow traveler of Bellochio's Pugni in tasca (given the vision of decaying aristocracy and schizoid families) with the brutality of Fulci, pervision of Pasolini at his best. (In addition, its conception of "the Devil" or a low level emissary of Satan is remarkably secular, critical, and bleak. More on this in my next post on the Luciferian turn.)

And the whole thing shot through with an apocalyptic fury and sadness. It draws its inspiration from the repression of anti-censorship movements (and hence got itself banned for a number of years), but at the heart of it, it is a film about a failed revolution in a failed world, petty betrayals and blood-soaked snow. Like von Trier's Europa trilogy and Malaparte's Kaputt, The Devil is, at its core, a dazed stare into a Europe that perhaps can never bury its dead properly, a filthy map whose lines are getting no clearer with distance from the war.

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