Door to Silence / Le porte del silenzio (1991)

3.0 out of 5

While Fulci's later work was a little inconsistent Door to Silence is a definite return to form after the more lacklustre yet strangely compelling Demonia. Eschewing what had become the trademark gore Lucio instead created a fascinating Jacob's Ladder style supernatural thriller that was released by Joe D'amato's production company Filmirage.

Light on dialogue the film benefits from the presence of Deer Hunter star John Savage, some wonderful jazz and an excellent use of New Orleans and wider Louisiana locations which the director skilfully combines to create a genuinely eerie and uneasy ambience.

Even though this road film had echoes of road based fare such as Duel with the stalking presence of a mysterious vehicle, in this instance a hearse, in practice the film comes closest thematically to the delightful 2003 Jean-Baptiste Andrea and Fabrice Canepa French/American co production Dead End.

There are on the downside a number of genuine criticisms that could be levelled at the film. Firstly the film is too long for the material at hand and while the premise itself is a good one this could have played better with a shorter running time, maybe along the lines of a Twilight Zone episode. Secondly such was the signposting throughout the film that the "twist" ending comes as no surprise and is pretty much obvious from the outset.

Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics