Top positive review
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The Evil Touch
on 29 September 2011
The 12th Century. Following a massacre of suspected plague sufferers, one of whom has a stigmata on her foot, the church and the establishment decide to bury their secrets by building a church on the site of where the victims are buried, in order to keep the evil trapped for ever, under hallowed ground. The present day. The very same church has a new librarian, who unwittingly frees the toxic evil from its incarceration, awakening a centuries old power that begins to infect the church and its occupants one by one...
Italian director Michele Soavi, who served his apprenticeship under two great horror directors from Italy, Dario Argento and Lamberto Bava, here shows his usual creative flourishes to direct this highly enjoyable horror film. Soavi may well have only directed a handful of films, but what a great handful they are. Whilst not quite attaining the heights of his brilliant arty slasher 'Stagefright' or the endearingly bizarre 'Dellamore Dellamorte', Soavi once again delivers the goods.
Originally devised as the third in the Demoni series, 'The Church' could be accused of style over substance, but frankly who cares, as many Italian horrors favour a beautiful tapestry over total plot cohesion.
The best part of the film is once a disparite group of people, including a school party, a wedding group and a pair of nagging pensioners, are trapped within the church's walls, once a mechanism is operated that seals the church and its putrid secrets from the modern world. This is where Soavi's visual flair really comes into its own, as the infected hallucinate of demonic apparitions and madness spreads. One darkly humourous scene finds a jolly old dear using part of her husbands anatomy as a bell ringing instrument.
The cast reads like a who's who of Italian horror, with Giovanni Radice, Tomas Arana and Dario's daughter Asia all turning up, along with Hugh Quarshie, playing a progressive priest.
The on screen style is nicely complemented by a terrific music score by Keith Emerson and The Goblins/Goblin.
This Blue Underground release presents the film nicely with a nice picture and sound quality, although the extras are a bit barren. 5 out of 5 for the lovely main attraction anyway.
Please note- This Blue Underground is region free and not Region 1 as stated in the product information.