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Aenigma - Image Entertainment Print E-mail
User Rating: / 8
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Written by Chris Mayo   
Tuesday, 27 November 2007

AENIGMA DVD Cover - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

AKA: Ænigma
Directed by:
Lucio Fulci
Written by:
Lucio Fulci, Giorgio Mariuzzo
Produced by:
Boro Banjac, Ettore Spagnuolo
Cinematography by:
Luigi Ciccarese
Editing by:
Vanio Amici
Special Effects by:
Lucio Fulci
Music by:
Carlo Maria Cordio, Douglas Meakin
Cast:
Jared Martin, Lara Naszinsky, Ulli Reinthaler, Sophie d' Aulan, Jennifer Naud, Riccardo Acerbi, Kathi Wise, Milijana Zirojevic
Year:
1987
Country:
Italy, Yugoslavia
Language:
English Dubbed
Color:
Color
Runtime:
86 Minutes


Video: NTSC R1
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 non-anamorphic
Audio: English Dolby Digital 2.0
Distributor: Image Entertainment
Official Website: http://www.image-entertainment.com/

http://severed-cinema.com/images/horizon.jpg
This latter Fulci film takes Stephen King’s design of Carrie and puts an Italian spin on things.  Made just one year prior to the Fulci film Touch of Death, Aenigma showcases the downward spiral of Fulci as the bigwig maestro of the Italian Horror industry he once was.  Though his filmmaking years prior to his death still provide some great movies such as the brutal horror black comedy Touch of Death, or even the gory A Cat in the Brain, one can only sit and watch the end of a horror legend through Aenigma.  Notably a lesser horror effort from Fulci, can Aenigma still hold its own next to some of his more notable directorial projects?

Kathy is a recluse of Boston’s Saint Mary’s College.  She is devoid of any real friends at this all girl’s school, but things start to look up when she manages to score a hot date with her heartthrob gym instructor Fred Vernon.  Enter the Carrie plotline.  The date starts off better than her wildest dreams, with the two of them in a secluded wooded path, sitting in Fred’s parked car.  Unbeknownst to Kathy, they are surrounded by her classmates in a bunch of other vehicles out of site.  Fred has a recording device in the car so her oppressors can mock and listen.  Just when Kathy thinks the two are about to get hot and heavy her classmates flash their headlights surrounding her with laughter.  Humiliated she takes off running, and the group of hecklers follows.  They chase her onto a road and she is hit by an oncoming motorist.  Their joke lands her comatose, in the hospital.

Eva Gordon (Lara Naszinsky, A Blade in the Dark) takes the place of Kathy as the new girl of Saint Mary’s College.  When she meets her roommate Jenny Clark (Ulli Reinthaler, Zombi 3), she wastes no time in stating her intentions, “Ok Jenny, let’s get one thing straight.  For me a successful year means making out with as many boys as possible.”  Once settled in, it doesn’t take long for the strange shit to materialize.  Little by little, Eva shows signs she may not be who she claims to be.  One day she makes the comment to Jenny, “I’m so glad I was born in Boston.”  “Weren’t you born in New Orleans?” Jenny protests.

Eva’s intentions are rolling when she is asked on a date with Fred Vernon, but things don’t go as expected when he doesn’t show up.  Instead Fred is caught up with his own weird shit.  He is strangled by his own reflection.  The cops turn up, and state that he died of a heart attack, but one can’t help but speculate when other bodies turn up, that there may be more at power.  In one sequence there is a very cool suffocation by snails, a scene one could imagine from Juan Piquer Simón’s SLUGS, but here with Fulci pizzazz.  Could Kathy be performing comatose telekinetic powers from beyond her hospital bed, or could the peculiar maid be at play here?  After all, the maid is the mother of cataleptic Kathy…

I’ve seen a good many Fulci films in my years, and I’ve managed to at least find enjoyment in all of them.  Sadly Aenigma has to be the exception.  With the works of Fulci, I can usually rely on some awesome gore, gloomy atmosphere, sleaze, or at the very least his trademark Fulcheese!  I can’t really say Aenigma is all that entertaining.  The film suffers from bad writing and a rather trudged pacing.  Aside from a few tidbits of nudity, not much gore is even showcased until the last act, which includes merely a severed arm and a couple decapitations.  To make matters worse, these gore scenes only exist through hallucinations.  We don’t even get a nice score by the likes of Fabio Frizzi, but instead a bunch of cheesy cock-rock and a couple mellow and pathetic love songs.  You have to remember, this film was made in 1987, well after many of his classics.  On the bright side, he did deliver with the subsequent Touch of Death in 1988.

Fulci followers will no doubt want to have a version of this film in their collection.  Image Entertainment does deliver an adequate version of a more lackluster Fulci film, but its non-anamorphic transfer and lack of original Italian audio may force fans into exploring a more worthwhile Aenigma DVD.  A Region 2 DVD exists from Italy (Minerva Pictures / Horror Club) and contains an anamorphic transfer with both Italian and English audio choices.

THE DVD

VIDEO:
1.85:1 non-anamorphic
http://severed-cinema.com/images/full-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/full-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/full-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/zero-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/zero-star.jpg
AUDIO:
Dolby Digital 2.0 – Dubbed English
http://severed-cinema.com/images/full-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/full-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/full-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/zero-star.jpghttp://severed-cinema.com/images/zero-star.jpg

SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIAL:

- none

Image Entertainment’s Aenigma DVD is devoid of any supplemental material.

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 001 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 002 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 003 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 004 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 005 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 006 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 007 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 008 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 009 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 010 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

 AENIGMA DVD Screen Shot 011 - SEVERED-CINEMA.COM

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