After an elongated post-production period and tentative release dates, the trailer to the remake of Dario Argento’s Suspiria has finally arrived. Released on June 4th from Amazon Studios, the teaser trailer looks encouraging for fans of Argento’s beloved cult masterpiece. Helmed this time around by director, Luca Guadagnino, this brief glimpse reveals an unsettling series of images with several references to the original flick. As is always the case, comparisons and debates surrounding the notion of remakes will arise. However, Guadagnino appears to be staying true to Argento’s original vision and story.
The trailer depicts a load of references from the 1977 flick. There are the literal allusions such as dealing with maggots and the names of characters. However, there are subtle homages to the style of Argento’s feature. While the color palette differs from Aregnto, the essence appears to be intact. Guadagnino’s look seems to be landing somewhere between Argento and Stanley Kubrick. Guadagnino is taking a colder approach with muted browns and reds. The costumes, architecture, and characterization displayed are, nevertheless, belonging to Argento’s universe. Even with less intense colors, the dreamlike quality of the original remains.
Tilda Swinton’s presence appears both domineering and tortured. Dakota Johnson is the new Susie Bannion and projects agility, grace, and confidence. The fact that the two leading ladies are able to convey a large range, without dialogue and in such a short time, bodes well for audience expectations. The lack of words or spoken direction is effective in creating a creepy and troubling atmosphere. Still, the whispered hiss calling out “Suspiria” is missed.
The remake of a work as renowned in the horror genre as Suspiria is going to face resistance. The teaser trailer suggests that Guadagnino is the proper director to handle such a classic update. However, a trailer can be misleading and even outdo the film being represented (2017’s Rings comes to mind). This presentation appears to have a director that understands the essence of what an Argento fan will expect. Guadagnino is not duplicating the former film, nor is he abandoning its spirit. But he doesn’t appear to have ignored what made the original so great, either.
Suspiria is set to be released November 2, 2018.