Luca Guadagnino’s long-awaited remake of Dario Argento’s 1977 operatic horror classic Suspiria has finally received a trailer, released this morning. Guadagnino, hot off the critical success of 2017’s Call Me By Your Name is returning to work with actors Dakota Johnson and Tilda Swinton, who both starred in his 2016 film A Bigger Splash. Here, Johnson plays the lead, an American dancer at a mysterious European dance academy run by Swinton’s imposing, cigarette-smoking enigma, Madame Blanc. Suspiria being a horror film, it isn’t long before a young girl’s lessons in dance turn into lessons in grisly, inventively horrific murder and occultism.
Guadagnino recently told The Guardian that he doesn’t consider this a remake of Suspiria, but rather an “homage” to his visceral, emotional reaction to the first film. That approach is more evident in this trailer, as Guadgnino and cinematographer Sayombhu Mukdeeprom eschew copying the neon-tinged look of Argento’s Suspiria, instead opting for a grainy, realistic look that still evokes European cinema of the 1970s. Helping to construct the ominous atmosphere is Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, who wrote the score and seems to have likewise paid homage to Goblin’s score for the 1977 film.
It appears that this Suspiria is also set in the 1970s, based on the hair and clothing of the characters as well as the appearance of the Red Army Faction logo, an infamous far-left German militant group active in the ‘70s – perhaps Guadagnino and screenwriter David Kajganich are adding in some light militarism to this story of satanic murders? A short glance at a bulletin board features a poster with the ominous phrase “murder begins at the evil word,” which suggests that Guadagnino has taken the opportunity to fill every inch of every frame of his Suspiria with dread and horror, some of which is already palpable in this trailer. In quick succession, we are shown ominous flashes of foreboding and intense gazes, a missing girl, bound hands, ‘70s hair, face maggots, contorting shoulder blades, levitation, dancing and a long last look at a very curved, very sharp hook resting on a sizable pool of blood.
The movie also stars Chloë Grace Moretz (Carrie), Mia Goth (A Cure for Wellness) and Jessica Harper, the star of the original Suspiria. The film is currently expected to be released by Amazon Studios on November 2, 2018.