There's Something about Fulci!


By all accounts, I should hate Lucio Fulci’s films. They often appear grainy, with mediocre acting and inexplicable scenes. For example, in New York Ripper, he has a killer who quacks like a duck and an early scene where a girl on a bike runs into a car and excuses herself by saying something like, “Sorry! I was thinking about Boston.” He even has a couple in his Gates of Hell trilogy exclaim they have to hurry to stop the apocalypse but then stop for lunch??? Huh?

I told my son I suspected that Fulci’s writing desk must have looked like Tony Montana’s from the end of Scarface! That’s the only explanation I can give!

Yet, despite the fact that I admit to being a horror movie snob who refuses to excuse low budget ‘80’s slashers for poor cinematography when Dean Cundey pulled it off with Halloween, or poor dialogue when Carl Gotleib and Steven Spielberg (with a little help from John Milius) executed it on the fly with Jaws, etc. However, Fulci’s films have an elusive quality that somehow overcomes my snobbish biases and make them not only enjoyable but strangely hypnotic.

I am not much of a collector (mainly because I spent a fortune on VHS then DVD’s now blu-rays and who knows what’s next) but I shelled out way too much money to own the special edition of Zombie (or Zombie 2) and kicked myself for missing out on the 3-disc special edition of The Beyond (anyone have one for sale?).

I can explain my love for Troma, ater all, they try to be ridiculous, but I can’t explain my fascination with Fulci. All I know is that I will gladly watch any of his horror films at any time. An elite number of filmmakers just seems to have knack for delivering movie that despite their obvious flaws suck viewers in and leave them wanting more—the late, great Lucio Fulci is among those chosen few.

Now, will someone produce a great box set of the master? I mean, we have one for Herschell Gordon Lewis!

Matthew Rawlings