The Gates of Hell

The Boston Phoenix

DIRECTED BY: Lucio Fulci

REVIEWED: 06-15-98

The Gates of Hell (1981). Incomprehensible borrowings from H.P. Lovecraft -- the town of Dunwich, the frightening, ancient "Book of Enoch" -- uncomfortably grafted onto a New York-set smart-ass detective mystery. Plus there's an unstuck-in-time priest on a hangrope who pops into the movie whenever, always causing havoc. It's all dumb and incoherent, but with two unforgettable nightmare scenes. In the first, the priest gives a young woman in a car a hypnotic evil eye, until her own bloodied eyes pop out of their sockets and she vomits up her intestinal tract. The second is on a par with Hitchcock: a man standing in a green cemetery on a beautiful day hears, perhaps, some dim, faraway noises. Cut to inside a blue-lit grave, where a buried-alive woman is scratching away at her tomb, screaming up into the dirt.

--Gerald Peary

Other Films by Lucio Fulci
Nightmare Concert
The Beyond
The House by the Cemetery

Film Vault Suggested Links
The House by the Cemetery
Night of the Bloody Apes
Lizard in a Woman's Skin

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