CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD (1980)

city of the living dead
A reporter and a psychic race to close the Gates of Hell after the suicide of a clergyman caused them to open, allowing the dead to rise from their graves.

After the Sex Pistol’s “Friggin’ in the Riggin’” had hit No.3 in the UK music charts, March 1979, and lingered for 12 weeks with no airplay, banned punk records had become old-hat. Then so-called ‘video nasties’ became the hot topic of schoolyard bragging, and seeing particular ones was a rite of passage for many British children. The horror films of Lucio Fulci still have a special place in the hearts of those of a certain age, just before 1984’s Video Recordings Act.

Even before the Video Recordings Act was written, local councils were using the 1959 Obscene Publications Act to seize VHS copies and prosecute the proprietors of rental shops that stocked a wealth of worrying new exploitation movies. There was a furore in the British national press, stirred up by Mary Whitehouse and her cronies, in the National Viewers’ and Listeners’ Association (NVLA), some of whom began to bring private prosecutions against distributors of video nasties, even resurrecting out-dated blasphemy laws to do so. Scotland Yard compiled a list of more than 50 titles that could be legally seized, and as this list continued to grow it became the go-to check-list for teenage horror fans!

Fulci’s first zombie film, Zombie Flesh Eaters (1979), featured prominently on that list. City of the Living Dead (1980) was targeted by the NVLA but never officially listed, but his two follow-ups, The Beyond (1981) and The House by the Cemetery (1981), were both legally listed as “obscene”. As it was criminal to simply possess a copy, they couldn’t even be presented for re-certification, even after the 1984 act enforced regulation for home video. So, this ensured their notoriety—and cult status—for many years to come.

Inevitably, copies had got onto the market before the Act was passed, and these were then illegally copied and re-copied, to be distributed like an illicit substance, in sleeves that had been photocopied and re-photocopied into unreadable abstraction. The picture was fuzzy, the sound was a muffled hiss, but they were still much sought after. Sourcing a video nasty earned kudos and friends would come around to your house to watch, whilst eating crisps and drinking flat cider. Oh, those were the days!

If that scenario doesn’t rekindle any warm-and-fuzzy feelings of nostalgia, then perhaps City of the Living Dead isn’t for you. It certainly has many flaws. The acting is patchy, the narrative confused, and the quality variable. It may not be the greatest film, but it’s an important one that ushered in a new era of arty, yet aggressively visceral horror that defined the genre for Italian cinema. At a time when horror movies tended to rely on cheap shocks and gratuitous gore, Fulci and a handful of auteurs were hellbent on redefining horror. It’s his passion and originality that makes up for its many shortcomings.

Don’t expect a precious arthouse drama with detailed character studies! The cast has some fine moments, though I think some of the emotion is genuine rather than acted. For example, they’re convincingly revulsed when showered in live maggots, or have to regurgitate sheep intestines… and for every dud line of dialogue, there’s an equally quotable bit.

We’re not even 10-minutes in when a séance in New York goes dreadfully wrong. Young clairvoyant Mary (Catriona MacColl) foams at the mouth and gasps “I see… I see…” We don’t get to know what she sees, because she screams, falls to the floor in a seizure, and promptly dies. The police investigator (Martin Sorrentino) in his 1970s tan raincoat is understandably sceptical and believes drugs to be responsible, but Theresa (Adelaide Aste), the medium hosting the séance, dismisses him as “a comic book version” of a police sergeant, before telling him that, even as they speak, somewhere else, “horrendously awful things are happening—things that would shatter your imagination.” Well that, and a slow pan through a graveyard that lingers on a headstone inscribed with the legend ‘The soul that pines for eternity shall outspan death, you dweller of the twilight void come’, are big clues that the story may well be as psychologically disturbing and nonsensical as the best of H.P Lovecraft, the writer who planted the initial seed of inspiration in the imaginations of Fulci and his screenwriter, Dardano Sacchetti.

Sacchetti is one of the most important figures in the Italian cinema’s pulp boom of the ’70s and already had a great track record. He had a hand in writing the stories for Dario Argento’s The Cat O’Nine Tails (1971) and Mario Bava’s Bay of Blood (1971) and Shock (1977). He’d already worked with Fulci on The Psychic (1977) and Zombie Flesh Eaters—which some take as a prequel to City of the Living Dead because it aligns zombies with the supernatural. After the sunnier setting of the Caribbean, though, Fulci relocates his zombies to the US, and instead of voodoo, he draws upon the Biblical apocalypse by way of the Southern Gothic. Generally, City of the Living Dead is accepted as part one in his ‘Gates of Hell’ trilogy and Sacchetti would return as a writer on the following two instalments: The Beyond (which better reworks the central themes), and The House by the Cemetery (which remains my favourite Fulci film).

The so-called Gates of Hell trilogy are not directly linked stories; after all Catriona MacColl plays a different lead character in all three films. Fulci wanted her for the part when he saw her in Lady Oscar (1979), her debut starring-role as a female military commander during the French Revolution. After the first few minutes of City of the Living Dead, it’s easy to understand why Fulci liked her so much. She’s obviously prepared to put performance before looking pretty, and delivers some cheesy script with great aplomb, even when those around her are simply saying words.

After the disastrous séance, the action follows a dogged newspaper reporter, Peter (American actor Christopher George), who accompanies the exhumed Mary to the isolated town of Dunwich, because of what she saw in her apparently fatal vision. Once there, they team up with local psychiatrist Gerry (Fucli favourite Carlo De Mejo), and his coolly beautiful patient, Sandra (Swedish actress Janet Agren), who’ve noticed that the recent dead have been leaving their caskets and appearing to the living.

What links the Gates of Hell films is their undead theme and US setting, along with the fusion of Lovecraft mythology with more traditional Gothic tropes. Although considered by many to be “zombie movies”, Fulci’s living dead are reanimated revenants back from the dead rather than victims of some contagion that’s denied them a natural death. Admittedly, he got these films budgeted as an attempt to cash-in on the zombie bandwagon that George Romero had set in motion with Dawn of the Dead (1978), itself a belated follow-up to the groundbreaking Night of the Living Dead (1968).

So, inevitably, Romero and Fulci are often compared, and sometimes it feels like a sort of ‘Blur or Oasis’-style debate. Personally, I think the directors have markedly different approaches and their zombie films are at odds in both theme and aesthetic. It also seems that the difference isn’t just in the visual accent. If the content is analysed, Romero uses the zombie as an element in a broader political discourse. Fulci is more philosophical.

In many ways, with their central focus on mortality, both are ultimately life-affirming. Romero’s Living Dead films are satires—the zombies are like us; sure, they’re blue and bloodless, but they still mindlessly go through the routines of life. Fulci’s films are far more sombre affairs, his zombies are decaying maggot-ridden corpses—they may not be like us anymore, but we’ll eventually become like them! Though both are equally graphic in their gore, I admit I prefer the moody, highly textured visual style of Fulci over the brainless brutality of Romero’s zombies. A more obvious stylistic precursor for Fulci would be Amando de Ossorio’s Tombs of the Blind Dead (1972).

There’s a lot of existential angst in Fulci’s films, and City of the Living Dead is no exception. The tendency to linger on the gore effects reminds us that we’re nothing more than blood bone and meat—mainly offal it would seem! The horror is all about the vessel of the body being destroyed by rupturing, ripping, penetrating, or the decay that follows. That’s why it seems fitting that the curse that’ll raise the dead of Dunwich is sparked off by the town priest, Father Thomas (Fabrizio Jovine). It’s unclear why he decides to hang himself in the churchyard, maybe he’s already demonically possessed, or has lost his faith in some spiritual crisis. Either way, his suicide on consecrated ground results in him being shunned from the afterlife and returning to get the Biblical apocalypse underway.

His first victim, Emily Robbins (Antonella Interlenghi), is apparently choked to death with flesh-slime and grave dirt, making the corruption of the flesh a major motif. Later on, there is a storm of maggots in a scene that tries to outdo the similar sequence in Dario Argento’s Suspiria (1977). Here though, there’s a psycho-sexual suggestion of procreating through decay, the corruption of the flesh as it is consumed to create new life—life beyond death at its basest.

Fulci’s zombies appear and disappear like ghosts and they don’t simply kill their prey by biting and ripping, though there’s a fair amount of that. In one of the film’s most infamous sequences, the undead suicide priest appears to a teenage couple as they ‘make-out’ in a parked car—never a good idea in any horror movie! He causes his victim (Daniela Doria) first to cry blood and then, literally, puke her guts up. Just by giving her a hard stare. This protracted gory gross-out (a showcase for the highly inventive mechanical effects devised by Gino De Rossi) is witnessed by her boyfriend, whom cult film fans may recognise as the young Michele Soavi. He went on to direct two notable ’80s cult classics, StageFright (1987) and The Church (1989), before hitting his stride as an auteur with two of the most fiercely original and weirdest horror films to come out of Italian cinema: The Sect (1991) and Cemetery Man (1994).

City of the Living Dead sounds great, eh? Well, it won’t disappoint fans of ‘80s hardcore horror, but there are better examples out there—the other two segments of the Gates of Hell trilogy, for instance. What lets it down most is the inconsistent quality. Luckily the inspired, inventive, beautifully shot content outweighs the poorly shot B Movie bits.

It’s also incoherent and doesn’t make much sense, which does unsettle the viewer and goes some way to creating its immersive atmosphere as intellectual grappling is confounded at every turn. We don’t really know why Father Thomas kills himself, and it’s never explained how this causes the dead to rise, or why the protagonists must stop him on Halloween night. There are also a few narrative loose ends: characters we never see are referred to by name, and previous events are mentioned in passing without their significance being explained. Perhaps it’s poor script editing, or it could be intended to imply that this story is just one in a more complex tapestry of supernatural tales. We really don’t care too much by the time this all builds up to a fantastic finale in a forgotten subterranean necropolis that is brilliantly staged, with a striking set by Massimo Antonello Geleng.

But then… there’s the surprise, nonsense ending! I usually avoid any major spoilers, even when reviewing classics, but the conclusion of City of the Living Dead has sparked so many unsatisfactory explanations that I think I may have something to contribute to the debate. So, if you’d like to avoid potential spoilers, skip the next paragraph!

SPOILER ALERT!

The final few frames really don’t seem to make sense and leave viewers with the feeling they’ve missed some important clue. It begs the questions “Well what was that all about? What’s that supposed to mean?” A bit like life, I suppose! As Gerry and Mary climb out from the hellish underworld, after defeating Father Thomas and his legion of shuffling undead, they seem relieved as John-John (Luca Venantini), younger brother of the cursed priest’s first victim, comes running joyfully to great them in smiling slow-motion. Then Mary begins to scream and the freeze-frame fractures. Certainly, it stimulates immediate debate as the credits roll and seems to imply something about the hereditary curse of the Salem Witch-burners, which is alluded to throughout and, if followed to its logical(?) conclusion, would mean that the innocent child may be the last in the line. Which, of course, means there’s potential for it all to happen all over again should he ever commit suicide in a churchyard. So, is that why Mary’s screaming? Because we know she’s a clairvoyant who suffers visions of the future and so would realise with certainty that, despite surviving all that horror, they have merely postponed the apocalypse…

frame rated divider arrow video
city of the living dead

Blu-ray Limited Edition Contents:

This is a definitive Arrow Video release, that will certainly please the fans. Considering the grain of the original stock and the inconsistent nature of photography, this 4K restoration (scanned from the original negatives), presents the sound and image as clean as they’re ever going to be. There are more than six hours of extras, plus another three hours if you include the two full-length audio commentaries!

There are also interviews with key members of the cast and crew, who are still alive, and rare behind the scenes footage. Admittedly, some of this will only be of interest to hardcore aficionados, and several anecdotes are repeated. Although not released in running order, this now completes Arrow Video’s lovingly restored Blu-ray editions of Fulci’s notorious ‘Gates of Hell’ trilogy, along with The Beyond and The House By the Cemetery, as well as their ‘prequel’ Zombie Flesh Eaters.

  • Brand new restoration from a 4K scan of the original negative by Arrow Films. With this release, Arrow Video have made all three of the classic Gates of Hell trilogy available to enjoy without fuzzy picture or muffled sound. Finally, these classics that are so much more than ‘video nasties’ have been given the long-overdue respect they deserve.
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation. The colours are gorgeous, showing that Fulci, like most of his contemporaries, was under influence of maestro Mario Bava. The highly textured set-dressing and design can now be fully appreciated, and every sickly detail of blood, guts and squished brain can be examined at length.
  • Original uncompressed 1.0 mono and optional 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio. As clear as the dubbing will ever allow it to be.
  • Original English and Italian soundtracks. Your choice!
  • Newly translated, optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing for the English soundtrack.
  • Newly translated English subtitles for the Italian soundtrack.
  • Full-length audio commentary with star Catriona MacColl and journalist Jay Slater. Catriona MacColl recalls how the graphic gore content had deterred her taking the role, but being convinced by her agent who assured her it would be good experience, so she might as well take the money and enjoy. After all, it’s only an Italian B Movie, not too many people will see it, and it’ll soon be forgotten… She admits she liked flying to Rome for the casting and studio filming, and then to the US for the location work in Savannah, Georgia, but wasn’t that happy with appearing in a horror film which she remains somewhat dismissive of. In her opinion, as a young aspiring actress, whilst horror movies might have atmosphere in spades, they boiled down to being little more than special effects set-pieces stitched together by a flimsy plot, where the dialogue was there just to tell the story and the actors’ abilities weren’t stretched at all. It’s a pretty sound argument in most cases. She found, though, that she really enjoyed working with the cast, particularly the late Christopher George, who died unexpectedly just a few years after, but does spend a fair portion of the commentary assuring the listener that she really is a serious actress and talks a lot about her later filmography… She describes Fulci as a “tortured soul” who could be a real gentleman, but also a screamer in the typical Italian style. She has had a lasting screen career, currently filming a political thriller about the hacking of a US Presidential election, but she’s best known as a horror actress, particularly for her three leading roles in Fulci’s Gates of Hell films.
  • Full-length audio commentary with star Giovanni Lombardo Radice and writer Calum Waddell. Radice remembers being a young actor and really enjoying the social aspects of filmmaking, especially travelling abroad with a tight-knit production crew. He plays young vagrant Bob, who seems to bear the brunt of community’s blame for anything bad that happens in Dunwich and is dispatched in particularly nasty driller-killer style by an enraged father who believes him responsible for Emily’s murder. He speaks very highly of special effects man Gino De Rossi, and his dedication to his craft and technical inventiveness. They went on to work together several times and Radice was killed in a number of inventive ways throughout the 1980s! Her also says the entire production crew were very generous with their knowledge, especially Fulci’s cinematographer of choice, Sergio Salvati. He says Fulci was very much in control of all things on-set but was also prepared to adapt in lieu of the young actor’s input to which he listened to with great patience. Radice’s commentary is anecdotal and tinged with a dark humour.
  • We Are the Apocalypse, new 53-minute interview with writer Dardano Sacchetti. I really enjoyed the way Sacchetti talks about writing, in his interview for Arrow Video’s Cat O’Nine Tails Blu-ray, and here he’s just as informative and entertaining. He describes Lucio Fulci as “a great bastard and an excellent craftsman.” He talks about the writing process with Fulci and how they intentionally reworked St John’s vision of the Apocalypse but put a twist on it that we are the Apocalypse. Our society is becoming so sick and corrupt that it will turn on itself and we will destroy ourselves by creating a hell of our own design here on earth—so we won’t have to die to get there. Among other things, he explains the dread fascination he felt as a child with the deep dark cellar at his grandmother’s house. He describes it as being carved down into a natural cave and apparently had forty rickety wooden steps down… No one he knew dared to descend more than ten, because at that point one started to hear movements from the pit below. To his juvenile imagination that was the world below, not the middle earth of fairy tale fantasies, but the very depths of hell, the land where the dead dwelt. It left a lasting impression and he was able to draw upon it for these three films. So, we have his grandmother to thank!
  • Through Your Eyes, new 37-minute interview with Catriona MacColl. She seems more positive about the film in this standalone interview than in the commentary but covers much of the same ground as well as bringing us more up-to-date with her career.
  • Dust in the Wind, new 14-minute interview with cameraman Roberto Forges Davanzati. He fills in a lot of the technical background, like how the dramatic smoke and mist effects were created by throwing bags of talc and cement through the propeller of a swamp-boat. (So, I guess the actors didn’t need much make-up for those pale complexions and red-rimmed eyes!) He covers the location shooting in the US and also filming the interior sets that were built at DePaolis Studios in Rome. He describes Fulci as a pleasure to work with, “He always listened to the crew with great respect … with kid gloves. He was less gentle with the cast!”
  • The Art of Dreaming, new 45-minute interview with production designer Massimo Antonello Geleng. In which he gives loads of information about how the production package was put together right from the start. Luciano Matino and Mino Loy, the producers at the distribution company Dania-Medusa insisted on shaking things up a bit with some of their contracted crew including Geleng and he describes working with Fulci as “traumatic even to start with.” He also doubled-up as costume designer, though had almost no budget set aside for that. So, whilst working to a very specific colour palette he persuaded the actors to use their own clothes where possible or he bought off-the-peg items from local stores. His insight into filming the sequence where Mary wakes up in a sealed coffin is fascinating—the coffin interior had to function as a set in itself, allowing controlled access for lighting, cameras, and cameramen, but remaining as claustrophobic as possible. This is an excellent interview and one of the standout extras, although I realise it may be a bit info-heavy for those not genuinely interested in the making of the film.
  • Tales of Friendship, new 31-minute interview with Sergio Salvati. He was Fulci’s cinematographer of choice and worked on the bulk of his movies—including the consecutive run of City of the Living Dead, The Black Cat (1981), The Beyond, and The House by the Cemetery, as well as many classics of Italian cinema for other directors. Most notably, as assistant cameraman for Sergio Leone on The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (1966), the two best films of director David Schmoeller—Crawlspace (1986) and Catacombs (1988)—as well as the first Puppet Master (1989) movie, and also for Sergio Stivaletti’s directorial debut Wax Mask (1997), co-written by Lucio Fulci and Dario Argento. He and Fulci became lifelong friends and talks about his life both on and off set. Salvati describes Fulci, the man, as “loud and Italian”, and a director with the utmost respect for his cast and crew. He always put the script first and if something was in the script, he would try very hard to realise it for the screen, no matter how impossible it might seem at first. Fulci believed a successful film was one that expressed the director’s vision and honoured the writer’s craft…
  • I Walked with a Zombie, new 23-minute interview with actor Giovanni Lombardo Radice. He tells us how he met Fulci through a mutual acquaintance and first came to the director’s attention. He also tells us that he’s not a fan of horror films and doesn’t watch them out of choice. Yet he appeared in quite a few of the more intense offerings and got inventively killed many times. He recounts some personal anecdotes about filming City of the Living Dead and describes Fulci as having a bad temper, being of a gloomy disposition, and clearly marred by some great personal tragedy. This isn’t the only extra that alludes to trauma and tragedy in Fulci’s life’s, but some of the stories conflict with those told by others here…
  • They Call Him “Bombardone”, new 27-minute interview with special effects artist Gino De Rossi (not to be confused with special make-up artist Giannetto De Rossi, with whom he has also worked). He’s clearly a man who is still passionate about his craft. He shows us some choice items from his own collection, including the carved replica of Radice’s head that we see get drilled though in the film, and the little contraption he devised and built for the murder scene in The House by the Cemetery when Daniela Doria gets stabbed through the back of her head so deeply that the tip of the blade protrudes from her mouth. He makes the point that the effects of the era were truly original, the special effects team had to work out how to do things and then often work through the night to have models and mechanisms ready for filming the next day. He seems to have really enjoyed working with Fulci who he describes as always very calm and professional, apart from a few occasions when he shouted at some actors, who usually deserved it! Fulci, he says, was a director who knew exactly what shot and performance he wanted and would ensure he got them and not shoot lots of alternatives. He explains that this was how Fulci was able to bring his ambitious projects in on time and within modest budgets—and that’s why he was always in demand as a director. He contrasts his methods to the more ‘shotgun’ approach of many modern directors who will shoot the same scene many times with different lenses, different lighting, different interpretations of the dialogue, and then leave it to the editor to splice the scene together from all those different versions.
  • The Horror Family, 20-minutes of new interviews with father and son actors Venantino and Luca Venantini who both appeared in the film. Venantino reminisces about making the film and also his respected career in French cinema. His son, Luca was just an 11-year-old boy and although he did find the zombie make-up scary, it was all just a game to him and he had a great time. He remembers Fulci treating him just like the grown-up actors and being firm-but-fair with everyone. He also makes the good point that, although the film does have its flaws and technical errors here and there, it’s a hugely entertaining horror film with a personality all its own. Whereas a technically flawless film can be appreciated for its perfection, but if it bores you, which is the better film?
  • Previously unseen 20-minute interview with composer Fabio Frizzi. The music in City of the Living Dead is integral to its identity and effectiveness. Frizzi scored many of Fulci’s notable films since The Four of the Apocalypse (1975) until A Cat in the Brain (1990). Typically, his music is a fusion of solidly paced electronic sequences with deep notes and positive percussion, and slightly left-field lounge jazz. The sound has since become almost synonymous with Italian horror. His music has been reused by other directors and most notably featured in Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill Vol.1 (2003). He sums up his approach to composing for film as making music to support the images and the director’s intentions, not for the composer’s own pleasure. He had a lifelong friendship with Lucio Fulci who he summed up as being “emotionally fragile”, and explaining that his loud bravado was a compensation for this, “he always said what he thought, no matter how offensive or funny, and you knew if you were on good terms with him or not. He was very clear and direct.”
  • A 19-minute archival interview with actor Carlo De Mejo in which he describes first meeting Lucio Fulci whilst working on another film in the same studios and having an instant rapport. He says that in general Fulci was misunderstood and underrated. “He had a mood about him,” he says. “He would shout a lot and explode—but I loved that about him!” He also called Fulci’s presence on set “magical.” Fulci always worked to the script, but would continue adding and improving even whilst shooting. He was always pleased to work on a Fulci film because he knew it would be great fun and his part would be different each time. And a little trivia for the cult film fans—his mother is the great Alida Valli—known for her leading role in The Third Man (1949), which also starred Joseph Cotton and Orson Welles, and starring in Alfred Hitchcock’s The Paradine Case (1947), but is best loved by horror buffs as the German Dance Mistress in Dario Argento’s Suspiria.
  • Building Fulci’s City, a new 38-minute video interview with Stephen Thrower, author of the definitive tome, Beyond Terror: The Films of Lucio Fulci. He clearly knows his stuff and talks eloquently about the films of Fulci, placing City of the Living Dead into context and giving us a well-researched production timeline. He tries to explain why Fulci’s horror films have such longevity and are still regarded with great affection by their fans. He thinks it is something to do with the extreme horror and brutality, counter-balanced by moments of poetic beauty, but above all, it’s the unique mood conjured by these films.
  • Reflections on Fulci, a new 27-minute appraisal of Fulci’s Gothic period by Andy Nyman, writer-director and star of Ghost Stories (2017), Winston Churchill in the BBC’s Peaky Blinders, and the voice of ‘Bag’ in Sarah and Duck (2013). He unashamedly comes across as a full-on Fulci fanboy here and talks about the director with infectious enthusiasm. He insists that these films are not schlock or exploitation but clearly the product of a highly imaginative and original filmmaker. He thinks the main appeal is that they’re so surprising, with each scene different from the next and, although they don’t always seem to make sense, they’re never dull! He also admits the influence Fulci has had on his own life and work, especially Ghost Stories, and shares his personal experience of meeting Giannetto De Rossi (legendary make-up artists on Zombie Flesh Eaters, The Beyond, and The House by the Cemetery, among many others) and being made-up by him for his part in Uprising (2001).
  • The Dead Are Alive!, a new 26 minute video essay by Kat Ellinger on Lucio Fulci and the Italian zombie cycle. A good essay-style talk that looks at the influences upon Fulci and his subsequent influence on the genre, stressing that he was an innovator who flouted formula and fused disparate genres in new and exciting ways. By the way, the title of this bonus segment is taken from a 1972 film, directed by Armando Crispino and inspired by a short story by Edgar Wallace, which featured some undead ‘zombie’ Etruscans and may well have been a seminal influence on the zombie sub-genre and Fulci…
  • Behind-the-scenes 8mm footage with Roberto Forges Davanzati audio commentary. 10 minutes of his personal ‘home movie’ footage, some of it travelogue, documenting the crew’s visit to New York, whilst other sequences give a fascinating glimpse into the making of City of the Living Dead, we get to see some of the location filming as it takes place: the swamp-boat blasting unhealthy dust across the scene, with cameras and Fulci giving direction. We also get some intimate moments such as Fulci cuddling his favourite pillow on the crew’s arrival at their hotel…
  • Alternative US opening credits with the title, Gates of Hell.
  • Original trailers and radio spots.
  • Extensive image gallery featuring over 150 stills, posters and other ephemera from the FAB Press and Mike Siegel archives. A generous collection of imagery, sure to thrill any avid fan or memorabilia collector!
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Wes Benscoter.
  • Double-sided fold-out poster.
  • Six lobby card reproductions. Not available at the time of review (but sure to have nostalgia appeal).
  • A limited 60-page booklet featuring new writing by Travis Crawford and Roberto Curti, an archival interview with Lucio Fulci, and original reviews. Not available at the time of review.

frame rated divider arrow video

Cast & Crew

director: Lucio Fulci.
writers: Lucio Fulci & Dardano Sacchetti.
starring: Christopher George, Catriona MacColl (as Katriona MacColl), Carlo De Mejo, Antonella Interlenghi & Giovanni Lombardo Radice.

Written By
More from Remy Dean

WITCHFINDER GENERAL (1968)

A young soldier seeks to put an end to the evils caused...
Read More