Alright, let’s knock out the obvious. It’s pretty fair to say that most people hate remakes of beloved horror movies. All you have to do is get on the internet when a new one is announced to know that. And, trust me, 2018’s Suspiria was one of the most hated before it came out. Now, whereas some remakes have proven to be actually quite good, if not better, Suspiria proved otherwise once released. Since it’s come out, it has drawn a sharp divide in the fanbase. Some absolutely loved every ounce of this artistic interpretation of the Argento classic. Others couldn’t stand anything about this movie. Which is where I come in. What do I mean by this you ask? Well, I enjoyed the movie quite a bit, but definitely found some flaws that hold it back.
Remakes tend to do one of two things. Either they remake the movie almost shot for shot or take huge liberties with the original property. Suspiria leans toward the latter. While the story beats are the same, the film diverts many times. The biggest one being the mystery of what’s happening at the school is completely abandoned in favor of the audience knowing at the very beginning. This worked for me, though, as the film becomes less of WHAT is going on, but WHY are they doing what they’re doing. As someone who’s seen the original film, this helps the new one stay fresh. Now, while I find this to be a huge positive for the film, it also leads to its biggest flaw. And that is its length. Strap yourselves in folks because this movie is about 2.5 hours long. Add to that its artistic direction, the film can drag and feel a bit over indulgent at times. Luckily, the performances do help keep your interest. Especially Tilda Swinton, who commands the screen anytime she’s on.
I’m going to be honest with everyone. This movie is going to divide people. I wouldn’t be surprised if my friend and fellow reviewer, Connor, completely disagrees with me. It’s artsy, takes its time, is visually drab compared to the original, and takes some liberties. With that though, comes great performances, a fresh take on the story, subtle nods to much of Argento’s work, and a cameo that you won’t want to miss. For me, the good outweighs the bad. 2018’s Suspiria is a different take on the original that I enjoyed quite a bit.