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November 6, 2016

Movie Review: Masks (2016, Blu-ray)

Reviewed by:
James D.

If you would have asked me a decade ago, “ How do you feel about a new Giallo film”. I would have told you, no thanks. I am such a die hard movie geek. I have seen so many of the 70’s and early 80’s Giallos, that I lost faith in a modern day one at that time. In the last decade, it seems that the Giallo film has seen a comeback of sorts. “ Masks” is a very interesting one that brings me back to a creativity that pays respect to the masters of this genre.

Our main character is Stella. She is a young lady trying to get her dream of becoming an actress to happen. The problem with this dream, is the reality that she does not have the necessary talent to back it up. After bombing at an audition, she is asked to join the Matteusz Gdula acting school which courted much controversy in the 70’s. It seems that this school employs some very questionable methods. At first, the school seems fine and normal. It is when Stella makes friends with Cecile that she becomes worried and suspicious at what is going on around her at this school.

Eventually, she joins a one on one session that results in a journey to produce her to be the best actress she can be. I love the majority of this film. The slow pace does test your patience with the material, but the acting I felt was solid enough to keep the pace moving. It does have some moments that pay a little too much homage and comes across as cheaply clichéd. The payoff to this film, is worth the price of admission. It has a great last act that wipes away the majority of the problematic middle. The film has a depth to the main character, but I would have liked more light shined on the others in this film. The film is a good sit. If you want an all out horror film, you may be slightly let down unless you start the film around the 47 minute mark. If you want some solid storytelling, and a great script, this film offers bits and pieces of those. If you are into Giallo films, you are the crowd who should be picking this film up.

"Masks"delivers on the love of the Italian classics. This is worth a watch, with a ton of patience and willingness to follow this film.

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