Saturday, June 8, 2013

The Church

The Church (La Chiesa, Demons 3) Directed By Michele Soavi starring Asia Argento (1989).
Review By Goat Scrote
            We’ve seen the demons slaughtering victims in a movie theater, and terrorizing an apartment complex, and even rampaging through the streets. "The Church” changes the setting to a big creepy old cathedral with a grisly secret history. It attempts to give a backstory of sorts to the demons, and connects them a little more explicitly to the demons of religious myth. It also features one of the better monster-human sex scenes that I can recall (based on the fantasy art of Boris Vallejo, ed.) It's more visually sophisticated than the other two, and even though a great deal of the plot is hard-to-follow or just plain nonsense, “The Church” is my favorite of the three.
I'm a soldier in the Stryper army

                We catch a glimpse of the origin of the building in the middle ages. A group of armored knights templars spread lime over a burial pit. They catch a young girl in the woods nearby and kill her. Next they lay down a huge stone cross, the center stone of a future cathedral, on the ground of the pit.
"CRUNCH" little girl's scare us
                Next we see the completed church in the modern day. There is some hint of reincarnation, since the girl who died in the middle ages looks just like Lotte (played by Asia Argento), the daughter of the church caretaker. A woman restoring the frescoes in the church finds ancient document hidden in the masonry. One of the preacher's in played by John Morghen. The church librarian follows clues in the document to a "stone with 7 eyes", a cap in the center of the stone cross in the floor of the deepest part of the church. There is a vast dark hole beyond the capstone. He reaches inside and scratches his hand on some kind of jagged talon or hook stuck in the stone (perhaps the talon of a dead demon, like in the second movie).
whatever you do, don't remove!
            Before long the poor guy is tearing out his own heart, turning into a goat-beast, and stalking his co-worker the restorer. She escapes his advances, and he reverts to a human form later. Hermann The Sacristan (Roberto Corbiletto), gets scratched by the librarian and starts to become possessed as well. He sees himself reflected as a bird-demon in a mirror and goes to confession to try to purge the evil from himself, but ends up freaking out, running through the church, and impaling himself with a jackhammer in the basement. The hammer strikes the cross on the floor and sets in motion a “security system”, (almost like an elaborate game of medieval mousetrap), left in place by the builders of the cathedral. Their ancient contraptions seal the place closed and reveal a stone tablet with a message explaining that the purpose of the church is to contain an old evil: The demons.
another victim of Rube Goldberg's wraith

            There are plenty of potential victims trapped inside the church, including a wedding party and a primary school tour group full of devilish children. A handful of people scratched by the caretaker when he ran through the church are now showing symptoms of illness -- perhaps even plague. Swelling, discoloration, delirium, grim hallucinations... The people trapped in the church fail to understand the gravity of their situation at first. More and more people either die or fall under the spell of the demons, and chaos erupts in the cathedral. Down in the basement the possessed conduct a freaky sex ritual, and the librarian is back in his demon-goat shape. The outcome of this can’t be good, but one of the surviving priests discovers a way to collapse the church and seal the horror inside.
I was reincarnated to hang out in Italio-disco's, not defeat demons!
          Lotte escapes through an underground passage and is the only survivor. Sometime later she returns to the scene of the collapsed church, however, and finds the access-way to the demon pit, the stone with seven eyes, exposed. As she approaches, the capstone opens by itself… the demons refuse to be contained! We can presume this means bad news for the modern world. This might even be considered a “prequel” of sorts, as a background explanation for the sudden appearance of the demon ticket-taker in the first film… but there I go thinking too hard about the Demons movies, against my own advice.

     There is also a movie called Demons 3: The Ogre which is ostensibly the third film in this series. I have never seen the movie, but it is reported to be completely unrelated to the Demons films except in title, so I decided to ignore it and consider it a trilogy. The Church has an very atmospheric soundtrack by Keith Emerson, Goblin and Philip Glass.
These new dentures work great!

Our senseless deaths will not be in vain, oh wait, never mind.

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