CEMETERY MAN

AKA: Dellamorte Dellamore, Of Love and Death, Demons 95

Tag Line : He's found love at last. But is she alive?

Cemetery ManThis is another one of those films that I initially passed over when it was first released, only to wish I'd viewed it years ago when I finally got around to doing so. However, I was thoroughly unprepared for what lay ahead. Could it be? An intelligent zombie film? A tongue in cheek horror with an art house flavour? Oh yes indeedy!

The film is loosely based on the novel "Dellamorte Dellamore" by Italian writer Tiziano Sclavi, and stars British actor Rupert Everett as the films central character Francesco Dellamorte, a cemetery watch keeper in the fictional Italian town of Buffalora.

Life is fairly dull for poor old Francesco, his daily routine consisting of little more than digging graves, reading old telephone books and of course, shooting zombies with dum-dum bullets. You see the trouble is that, unknown to the outside world, some of the occupants of the Buffalora cemetery don't like staying put in their coffins. When this happens, Francesco and his grotesque assistant Gnaghi (an "Egor" type character played by Francois Hadji-Lazaro) have to deal with these "returners" and ensure they go back to their graves permanently.

"There comes a point when you know more dead people than living" laments Dellamorte, who appears to be getting increasingly fed up of his existence. But then one day his life is turned around when he meets the recently widowed "She" (played by the busty Anna Falci). But sadly their love does not last, when her dead husband comes back to life and attacks them as She and Francesco are indulging in some late night nookie on his grave.

Is this epidemic of the dead coming back to life happening in all cemeteries, or just Buffalora? Why does Gnaghi only talk in grunts? How come everyone refers to Francesco as an "Engineer"? and why on earth does the Grim Reaper keep giving him unsound advice on how to stop the dead coming back to life? Are all these bizarre events just part of a days work in the cemetery, or are they just figments of Dellamorte's mind? You may not find all the answers to these questions in this stylish, bizarre, surreal, arty, horror pic, but you'll certainly have fun watching.

If you haven't yet experienced Cemetery Man, I'd recommend seeking it out at once. Please remember though that this is very much an arty sort of horror film and does have an actual plot (albeit a somewhat darkly humoured one), so it's not the sort of movie you'd want to watch just for it's violent scenes (which in all honesty are relatively few). Cinema buffs and connoisseurs of fine horror films will definitely warm to it.

Overall Marks : 7/10.

Terrifying Trivia.

  • Dellamorte Dellamore, to give the film it's original Italian title, literally translated means "Of Death and Love".

  • Michele Soavi had previously worked with fellow Italian directors Dario Argento and Lamberto Bava. He also directed "The Church", "The Sect" and "Stage Fright".

  • The films budget was $4 million.

  • Francois Hadji-Lazaro, who played Gnaghi, is actually a French rock musician and fronted the bands "Pigalle" and "Les Garcons Bouchers". He still acts occasionally, appearing in French TV series.

  • Anna Falci, who has a couple of roles in the film, is actually a glamour model, but she has also appeared in numerous Italian films and TV series.

  • The Spanish release of the film was given the humorous title "My Fiancée, the Zombie". 

  • The cemetery sets were built in an actual abandoned cemetery in Italy. The ossuary crypt in the film was the actual crypt from the graveyard and not a set. 

  • The Japanese release was entitled Demons 95. Although why anyone would think this was ever meant as a sequel to Lamberto Bava's "Demons" is quite beyond me.

  • Francesco Dellamorte and Gnaghi were both based on charcters from the cult Italian horror comic "Dylann Dog", which was also by Tiziano Sclavi.

Extra Info.

Cast & Crew.

 

Video Clips.
MP4 format.

German theatrical trailer (3.84MB)
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