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Maschera di Cera

Wax Mask
Le Masque de Cire / Gaston Leroux's The Wax Mask / M.D.C. - Maschera di cera

Italy/France 1997
produced by
Dario Argento, Giuseppe Colombo, Fulvio Lucisano for Mediaset, Cine 2000, France Film International
directed by Sergio Stivaletti
starring Robert Hossein, Romina Mondello, Riccardo Serventi Longhi, Gabriella Giorgelli, Valery Valmond, Gianni Franco, Aldo Massasso
story by Dario Argento, Lucio Fulci, Daniele Stroppa, screenplay by Lucio Fulci, Daniele Stroppa, music by Maurizio Abeni, special and visual effects by Sergio Stivaletti, animatronics by Daniele Auber, cinematography by Sergio Salvati

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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13 years afer she saw her father killed quite horribly, Sonia (Romina Mondello) takes up a job as costume designer at Boris Volkoff's (Robert Hossein) wax museum, where a gruesome murder took place just the previous night. No sooner does she have the job is she approached by investigative journalist Andrea (Riccardo Serventi Longhi), who smells a story when he sees one & needs an inside source in the museum. Of course, Sonia is first reluctant but soon changes her mind as she falls in love with the man. Meanwhile a few more murders occur, while more & more wax-statues, resembling the victims, turn up in the museum. & one of the few surviving victims of our murderer describes a gruesome mechanic metal hand - much the same hand that murdered Sonia's father 13 years earlier. The inspector who investigated the case back then (Aldo Massasso) thinks so too & arrives just in time to save Sonia from an assault by the killer - but he soon falls victim to the villain himself. Secretly witnessing the lovemaking of Sonia & Andrea, Volkoff is reminded of his own wife, how he found her making love to another man, & hwo that other man pushed him into hot wax. Incredibly, he survived that ordeal though, but had to cover his whole body in wax in order to hide his burnt features & limbs ... and he has a mechanic metal hand ! As it turns out, Volkoff is not only Sonia's employer but her real father, the man she saw killed - by Volkoff - was actually only her stepfather, & now Volkoff wants to preserve his daughter forever ... as a wax statue. Of course, hero Andrea, finally having found Volkoff's secret lab, saves her in the nick of time & sopmehow (of course) the museum is set on fire. But Volkoff isn't exactly the man who can't stand the heat, so even as a skeleton - in a scene that was lifted directly from the showdown of Terminator, but still manages to give you a chuckle - he goes after Sonia & Andrea before being finally destroyed ... or is he ?

 

Somewhat charming but at the same time pointless period piece, with a - despite some nice gore- & computer-effects - very old-fashioned directorial effort by FX-master Sergio Stivaletti (actually, this movie was to be directed by scriptwriter Lucio Fulci & to be the first collaboration between him & Dario Argento, but he died prior to this). Unfortunately though, the screenplay is overly complex & somewhat muddled, and at the same time manages to be completely predictable - the plot of a house of wax using human corpses as statues wasn't completely new in the 90's, now was it !?

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD

 

 

Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Träume ...

 

Und an diesem Tag geht natürlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!

 

Bauliche Angelegenheiten
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