A haunting film that’s terrifying, meaningful and pretentious in equal parts.

Don’t Look Now is a film which has been sitting at the top of my watchlist for years… as a film-maker and film lover it is a film which I have heard people (reviewers, friends, successful filmmakers) going on about for about as long as I can remember and this ‘hype’ has always, rather strangely put me off.

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The film follows a married couple Laura (Julie Christie) and John (Donald Sutherland) who following the death of their daughter move to Venice. In this city they encounter two ladies one of whom is psychic and has dark premonitions.

It is an extremely slow-building horror which is filled with lots of symbology, it looks beautiful and everything seems to have some sort of hidden meaning and it’s dry tone increases the tension at every time. It is truly horrifying and is a film which is likely to stick in the mind for a long time as the performances and visual combine into a frightening encounter.

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The problem is that it just wasn’t as good as I thought it would be and at times it just felt extremely pedantic… with forced visuals and pretentious scenarios it was all too obvious and too on the nose; it felt like all the symbolic moments and hidden meanings where making a point to be obvious and it was rather distracting when you don’t know the complete story.

One of the things about Don’t Look Now that people love is its re-watchability and I can see why, perhaps if you know the story and the moments to look out for it has another level, but for me on my first viewing it was just a disappointment, albeit a memorable one.

 

7/10