Midnight enthusiasts are reveling in a revival of film genres, with a new wave of talented filmmakers delving into their cinematic roots. Italian-style horror has always remained an enigma, with its unwavering focus on mystery and gore. Federico Zampaglione brings forth his latest creation, "THE WELL," to the masses, offering this generation an authentic glimpse into the cinematic traditions of Italian cinema's past. Giallo and gore films are timeless fixtures in European cinema, and "THE WELL" stands as an authentically crafted gem that pays homage to Italian cinema.
Starring Lauren LaVera from "TERRIFIER 2," "THE WELL" follows the journey of an art restorer with an illustrious legacy inherited from her father. She is commissioned to restore a painting at a villa in Italy and soon finds herself amidst a group of biologists who bring a sense of warmth and familiarity to this foreign land. However, as she confronts the mysterious painting, an unsettling feeling begins to creep in.
"The Well" is replete with exquisite cinematography, a hallmark of Italian filmmakers, as it showcases the breathtaking landscapes throughout the film. Yet, the true allure for horror aficionados lies in the relentless gore, sure to bring a grin to Eli Roth's face. There are moments that will make you cringe but won't allow you to avert your gaze. The film's structure may initially perplex some viewers, potentially hindering their comprehension of the narrative. However, it doesn't take long for the true intentions of the film to surface, and it ultimately comes together cohesively. Balancing a certain atmosphere for one part of the story with brutal intensity in the other is a challenge, but Zampaglione's writing ignites the viewer's imagination, revealing how well-crafted and effective this seemingly simple film truly is.
While retro-styled films are currently all the rage in the horror genre, the same can't be said for European styles. By the time American audiences embraced French and Italian gore-induced horror, they had already become somewhat desensitized to masked, serial killers. The hope is that this generation will not overlook films like "THE WELL." It shouldn't be a hidden gem for future generations to unearth because it stands tall alongside any contemporary, gore-filled horror film. While some may struggle to grasp the nuances of this particular cinematic style, Euro horror film enthusiasts will undoubtedly find plenty to savor in "THE WELL."
THE WELL is directed by Federico Zampaglione and stars Lauren LaVera, Claudia Gerini, Giovanni Lombardo Radice, Taylor Zaudtke, Linda Zampaglione, Jonathan Dylan King, Lorenzo Renzi, Gianluigi Calvani, Yassine Fadel, Melanie Gaydos, Stefano Martinelli and newcomer Courage Oviawe.