The Church

( 2 )

Overview

Originally intended as the third chapter in producer Dario Argento's Demons trilogy, La Chiesa stands alone as an effective horror film centering on a haunted cathedral with a violent past. The church's history begins in Medieval Italy, when the Knights Templar massacred an entire village of suspected Satanists and built the structure upon the site of the slain peasants' mass grave. Designed by an architect/alchemist who was buried alive within his creation, the church is filled with elaborate machinery designed ...
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Overview

Originally intended as the third chapter in producer Dario Argento's Demons trilogy, La Chiesa stands alone as an effective horror film centering on a haunted cathedral with a violent past. The church's history begins in Medieval Italy, when the Knights Templar massacred an entire village of suspected Satanists and built the structure upon the site of the slain peasants' mass grave. Designed by an architect/alchemist who was buried alive within his creation, the church is filled with elaborate machinery designed to seal off all entrances if ever the spirits of the entombed villagers were to rise again... which, of course, takes place in the present when the crypt's seal is removed. As demonic forces have their way with the church's occupants, it becomes the task of the parish priest Hugh Quarshie and a young girl Asia Argento, daughter of Dario to discover the builder's last line of defense before the evil is unleashed upon the outside world. Directed by Michele Soavi who later gained critical acclaim with the inventive Dellamorte Dellamore, this is an imaginative Gothic horror film with startling imagery straight out of a Hieronymous Bosch painting and its own well-conceived mythology. Shots of the church's elaborate Medieval machines grinding to life are particularly memorable.
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Special Features

Theatrical trailer; Michele Soavi bio
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jason Buchanan
After receiving overwhelming praise by genre fans following his debut feature Stage Fright (1987), Italian director and Dario Argento protégé Michele Soavi follows up with this gothic-drenched apocalyptic nightmare which was originally slated as the third Demons film. Departing substantially from the pulsing, rock music-driven excess of Demons and Demons 2, The Church instead relies on building a suffocating sense of quiet dread, complimented by the beautifully surreal visuals that would define such later Soavi efforts as The Sect (1990) and Dellamorte, Dellamore (1994). Though many lamented the film's comparatively languid pacing as opposed to its predecessors, viewing The Church out of context and completely removed from the alluring expectation of gore-drenched demons charging through a gothic cathedral offers a satisfyingly horrific effort with some truly breathtaking photography. With The Church, Soavi comes into his own as a visual stylist, even if his storytelling skills may not have been totally realized at this point. Though Argento's influence can be felt in nearly every frame of The Church, Soavi has obviously taken another step toward becoming a director capable of functioning outside of his former mentor's restraints.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/30/2007
  • UPC: 827058107594
  • Original Release: 1989
  • Rating:

  • Source: Blue Underground
  • Region Code: 0
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Time: 1:42:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 24,965

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Church
1. Program Start/Main Titles [1:38]
2. Servant of Satan [3:14]
3. Holy Slaughter [5:35]
4. The Church [4:44]
5. Legion [3:23]
6. The Parchment [3:47]
7. "The Devil Is Everywhere" [6:14]
8. Little Liar [3:28]
9. Apparitions [5:20]
10. Hell Unleashed [5:17]
11. Possession [3:43]
12. Noise at the Window [3:37]
13. Demon Lust [3:35]
14. Reflection of Evil [5:04]
15. Confession [4:31]
16. Dark Rites [4:00]
17. Fountain Terror [3:08]
18. Bloody Bride [3:37]
19. Deadly Secret [5:29]
20. Subway Splatter [3:16]
21. Young and Beautiful [3:43]
22. Lotte's Memories [4:10]
23. Bride of the Devil [5:39]
24. Guided Tour [3:19]
25. End Credits [2:05]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Church
   Chapter Selections
   Extras
      Trailer
      Michele Soavi Bio
   Audio Setup
      Dolby Digital Surround EX
      Dolby Surround 2.0
   Play
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A reviewer

    Though not as accomplished as his later Cemetery Man, Dario Argento/Lamberto Bava protege Michele Soavi delivers a fast-paced and fun horror movie that is head and shoulders above the two Demons films that it was meant to follow, as well as a marked improvement over the interesting but flawed Stagefright that Soavi had previously helmed. This is horror done on a grand scale, but still focused on individuals in a manner reminiscent of the original Dawn of the Dead. Tomas Arana, familiar from dozens of later Hollywood films, is the lead and does a very good job of transitioning from heroic lead to possessed murderer without resorting to cliches. The film is perhaps a little over-stuffed with homages to classic horror particularly the Shining and Rosemary's Baby, but fans of the genre will appreciate their use, and Soavi gets points for referencing his influences in a direct fashion, rather than stealing from them and pretending he's just invented the wheel. All in all, the Church is a fun movie with some good splatter, some really cool visuals, and Asia Argento in one of her last appearences as an innocent girl, before her graduation to femme fatale status. Watch it in the dark with some friends, and enjoy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews