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Movie Jail: This week's defendant is...Dario Argento!

11 months agoby:

Movie Jail

This is Movie Jail, a unique maximum security prison that houses some of the worst writers, directors, actors and producers from Hollywood and beyond. Their crimes? The offenses vary from convict to convict but most of these inmates have contributed negatively to the film world to some capacity and his or her misdeeds have covered a long enough period of time that the authorities had to intervene. In each column a defendant is put on trial, arguments are made, and then it is up to YOU, the jury, to decide if the person is guilty or not guilty of crimes against cinema. Their lives are in your hands, dude.

The Defendant

The Case

The Prosecution: Dracula 3D, Giallo, Mother of Tears, The Card Player, Sleepless, Phantom of the Opera, The Five Days of Milan

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, what in the f*ck happened to Dario Argento? While he did direct horror classics like Suspiria and Deep Red, Mr. Argento's films as of late have been so bad the prosecution believes the only thing left to do with the once great director is send him to Movie Jail. Think of it more as a forced retirement, and not a prison sentence.

Mr. Argento is like that NFL or MLB player who has had a long career with some very bright spots, however hasn't performed nearly as well in recent years, and although it's obvious to most he should probably hang up his jersey, still thinks he has some gas left in the tank. At 73, the prosecution respects Mr. Argento for still wanting to climb behind the camera, but we can't respect how he has tainted his legacy and theaters with terrible films like Dracula 3D and Giallo. The final film in Mr. Argento's The Three Mothers trilogy (Mother of Tears), is just a painful reminder of how much his movies have declined in quality since the first two installments, and at this point the prosecution is convinced the director isn't going to suddenly return to form, or make a comeback like he did in 1996 with The Stendhal Syndrome.

The prosecution knows the jury might not feel comfortable locking Mr. Argento up in Movie Jail considering the impact his films have had on modern horror movies, however the prosecution believes we have to protect the director from himself by preventing him from working on future projects. It's unfortunate it has come down to this, but do you really want to see Mr. Argento further sully his legacy with more awful films? The prosecution doesn't, and is confident the jury will feel the same way.

The Defense: The Stendhal Syndrome, Trauma, Two Evil Eyes, Opera, Phenomena (Creepers), Tenebre (Unsane), Inferno, Suspiria, Deep Red, Four Flies on Grey Velvet, The Cat O'Nine Tails, The Bird with the Crystal Plumage

Ladies and gentlemen, in some trials, recent failures don't matter nearly as much as past accomplishments, and that's definitely the case with Mr. Argento. The defense isn't going to try to convince the jury Dracula 3D or The Phantom of the Opera are great, but they aren't the films Mr. Argento will be remembered for either, and throwing my client in Movie Jail is not how you treat such an influential horror movie director.

The prosecution talks about wanting to "help" prevent my client from hurting himself, but shouldn't Mr. Argento be allowed to do whatever the hell he wants? The defense also believes Mr. Argento still has a couple of good flicks left in him, and thinks Mother of Tears is actually a pretty solid movie. Is it as great as the other two films from The Three Mothers trilogy? No, but it's still an entertaining movie, and proof Mr. Argento still has the ability to direct a decent movie.

Besides directing fantastic horror movies like The Bird with the Crystal Plumage, Deep Red, and of course, Suspiria, Mr Argento also helped produce George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead, and with Bernardo Bertolucci, helped develop the story for Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West. My client should be on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, not up for Movie Jail.

IN CLOSING...

Should we imprison the man who helped introduce the world to giallo films, or let him walk? Do you think Mr. Argento is still capable of delivery a solid movie, or have you lost faith in the director? Is Dario Argento GUILTY or NOT GUILTY?

COMMENT BELOW WITH YOUR VERDICT!

*The cases for and against a defendant going to Movie Jail by the author are not necessarily his views and opinions but they are some of the beliefs that one would use to effectively make an argument for both sides. Not quite a devil's advocate but you get the point. Anyways, this is all in fun so don't take it too seriously. We have a separate jail for those people called "Troll Tower" and believe me you do NOT want to go there.

WHAT SAY YOU, GUILTY OR NOT?

LAST WEEK'S VERDICT

In last week's trial, Kiefer Sutherland was found NOT GUILTY of all charges, however it had nothing to do with the jury, although most did say Jack Bauer doesn't belong in prison. No, it's because Mr. Sutherland snuck into the prosecution's house, kidnapped him, and then proceeded to torture him until he agreed not to send the actor to Movie Jail, regardless of the verdict. Mr. Sutherland is a free man, while the prosecution, is a man in pain. Ball pain.

PREVIOUS VERDICTS

GUILTY Adam Sandler, Eddie Murphy, Vince Vaughn, Tim Burton, The Farrelly Brothers, Michael Bay, Jessica Alba, Ice Cube, Gerard Butler, Halle Berry, Marlon Wayans, Julia Roberts, M. Night Shyamalan , Katherine Heigl , Cuba Gooding, Jr., Tyler Perry, Cameron Diaz, Kate Hudson, Ashton Kutcher, Happy Madison Productions, Jennifer Lopez, Bruce Willis, Paul W.S. Anderson, Matthew Broderick, Sarah Jessica Parker, Brett Ratner, Rob Cohen, Renee Zellweger, Shia LaBeouf, Renny Harlin, Diane Keaton, McG, Demi Moore, King Joffrey (Game of Thrones Special), David Spade, Spike Lee, Kevin James, Joel Schumacher

NOT GUILTY Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer, Nic Cage, John Travolta, Oliver Stone, Ben Stiller, Jim Carrey, Wes Craven, Matthew McConaughey, Robert Rodriguez, Kristen Stewart, Roland Emmerich, Kevin Costner, Sandra Bullock, Hilary Swank, Al Pacino, Keanu Reeves, Kevin Smith, Channing Tatum, Jennifer Aniston, Owen Wilson, Anna Faris, Robin Williams, Charlize Theron, Ray Liotta, Jason Statham, Paul Walker, Will Smith, Salma Hayek, Michael Cera, Johnny Depp, Ryan Reynolds, Milla Jovovich, John Singleton, Jon Voight, Jack Black, Brian De Palma, Jerry Bruckheimer, Nicole Kidman, Justin Timberlake, Freddy Krueger (Halloween Special), Johnny Knoxville, Orlando Bloom, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Dan Aykroyd, Sylvester Stallone, Gavin Hood, Jason Lee, Jennifer Garner, Carrie-Anne Moss, Kate Beckinsale, John Cusack, Chris Columbus, Clive Owen, Terrence Howard, Andrew Niccol, Drew Barrymore, Steve Martin, Joel Silver, Michelle Rodriguez, Kiefer Sutherland

Extra Tidbit: Who should stand trial next week? Share your suggestions for actors, directors and writers below with your verdict!
Source: JoBlo.com

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1:34PM on 06/24/2014

NOT GUILTY!

With Giallo being okay ( I have seen much worse) and I didn't like the Card Player at all along with Phantom of the Opera. Why is Sleepless in the prosecution? That is one of my favorite Argento films and his last solid movie he made?? Plus when I watched Dracula 3D I was expecting something much worse but was pleasantly surprised. I liked the story a lot actually. A different take and the film quality had that certain feel. The Mother of Tears he just eventually made it because people kept
With Giallo being okay ( I have seen much worse) and I didn't like the Card Player at all along with Phantom of the Opera. Why is Sleepless in the prosecution? That is one of my favorite Argento films and his last solid movie he made?? Plus when I watched Dracula 3D I was expecting something much worse but was pleasantly surprised. I liked the story a lot actually. A different take and the film quality had that certain feel. The Mother of Tears he just eventually made it because people kept harping about it. It also wasn't horrible it just didn't compare to Suspiria or Inferno therefor gets flack. Mr. Argento took the Giallo genre and fantasy and flung into terrifying realism. Argento at this point can do what he wants because he is Argento. He still has a wonderful vision and a twisted mind.
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10:52PM on 06/23/2014

Guilty

Yes, his earlier works were amazing and different, but he never grew as a filmmaker. Now, please don't misconstrue that phrase- I get a director has motifs or a style he/ she is drawn to- like Wes Anderson's quirk in all his films. He has a definite style that one could identify just by a screenshot, but with "The Grand Budapest Hotel", while unmistakably his, is also a different genre, etc. for him.

Argento doesn't have that. His films in the last fifteen or so years have been bogged done
Yes, his earlier works were amazing and different, but he never grew as a filmmaker. Now, please don't misconstrue that phrase- I get a director has motifs or a style he/ she is drawn to- like Wes Anderson's quirk in all his films. He has a definite style that one could identify just by a screenshot, but with "The Grand Budapest Hotel", while unmistakably his, is also a different genre, etc. for him.

Argento doesn't have that. His films in the last fifteen or so years have been bogged done by feeling dated thanks to his failure to grow. Aside from that, a lot of his recent films just feel lazy, lacking even the luminous cinematography at the start of his decline.
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7:51PM on 06/23/2014
I think the COMMENTERS should be tossed into movie jail for not knowing who Dario Argento is! Come on guys, aren't you supposed to be movie buffs?! This is the father of modern horror we're talkin about here! Good lord, watch some damn movies, would ya?
I think the COMMENTERS should be tossed into movie jail for not knowing who Dario Argento is! Come on guys, aren't you supposed to be movie buffs?! This is the father of modern horror we're talkin about here! Good lord, watch some damn movies, would ya?
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3:52AM on 06/24/2014
Get over yourself. Who cares who this bitch is.
Get over yourself. Who cares who this bitch is.
8:22AM on 06/24/2014
Amen, Grand_Marquis; this is embarrassing.
Amen, Grand_Marquis; this is embarrassing.
11:35AM on 06/25/2014
I completely agree. Shame on them for not knowing who one of the most legendary Giallo directors of all time is. Even if you don't like horror you can still love his films if you love mystery especially his early works. The Giallo genre is what inspired American slashers.

He is called the Italian Hitchcock for a darn reason.
I completely agree. Shame on them for not knowing who one of the most legendary Giallo directors of all time is. Even if you don't like horror you can still love his films if you love mystery especially his early works. The Giallo genre is what inspired American slashers.

He is called the Italian Hitchcock for a darn reason.
7:11PM on 06/23/2014
I can`t get over how many people don`t know who he is,Suspiria! Shame on you .I bet people know who Asia Argento is though lol.Guilty because Giallo and Mother of Tears were truly fecking abominations of cinema.
I can`t get over how many people don`t know who he is,Suspiria! Shame on you .I bet people know who Asia Argento is though lol.Guilty because Giallo and Mother of Tears were truly fecking abominations of cinema.
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3:15PM on 06/23/2014
'Sleepless' is part of the prosecution? GTFO, it was probably the last decent movie he made.
'Sleepless' is part of the prosecution? GTFO, it was probably the last decent movie he made.
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2:54PM on 06/23/2014

This is a terrible movie jail person to have.

While i fully know and respect who he is. His movies are too obscure and niche for me. Ive only seen one or two of his "good" movies and they are terrible. But I know it is simply because its not my thing. this is the first fail movie jail this site has had. He would have been better placed in the arrow in the head section. Too obscure for most people.
While i fully know and respect who he is. His movies are too obscure and niche for me. Ive only seen one or two of his "good" movies and they are terrible. But I know it is simply because its not my thing. this is the first fail movie jail this site has had. He would have been better placed in the arrow in the head section. Too obscure for most people.
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2:02PM on 06/23/2014
I've only seen two of his movies. They were both horrible, but his other movies could be great. Pass.
I've only seen two of his movies. They were both horrible, but his other movies could be great. Pass.
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+0
1:59PM on 06/23/2014

Not guilty.. BUT barely.

Dario to me is on that list of Craven, Carpenter and Romero of great horror directors whose desires to stay relevant and show that being older means that they lost their touch have made them sacrifice quality for quantity. Also sorry to be shallow like this but I really dig his daughter, Asia.
Dario to me is on that list of Craven, Carpenter and Romero of great horror directors whose desires to stay relevant and show that being older means that they lost their touch have made them sacrifice quality for quantity. Also sorry to be shallow like this but I really dig his daughter, Asia.
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2:01PM on 06/23/2014
*show that being older means that they HAVEN'T lost their touch*

Argh, I wish they'd let me edit posts I've done
*show that being older means that they HAVEN'T lost their touch*

Argh, I wish they'd let me edit posts I've done
2:08PM on 06/23/2014
I wanted to see her in more American movies after she was in XXX. To bad that didn't work out.
I wanted to see her in more American movies after she was in XXX. To bad that didn't work out.
-1
1:28PM on 06/23/2014
Not a single fuck was given.
Not a single fuck was given.
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11:55AM on 06/23/2014

Who???

I have no idea who this fellow is, and I don't recognize 3/4 of the movies he's done.

Not Guilty, I guess?

How about some more star quality people on the stand next: Jeff Goldblum? That dude from "Ride Along" and "It's a Guy Thing Too"...not Ice Cube....the other guy!
I have no idea who this fellow is, and I don't recognize 3/4 of the movies he's done.

Not Guilty, I guess?

How about some more star quality people on the stand next: Jeff Goldblum? That dude from "Ride Along" and "It's a Guy Thing Too"...not Ice Cube....the other guy!
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-2
11:20AM on 06/23/2014

Not Guilty

Simply because I have no idea who he is. Sorry.
Simply because I have no idea who he is. Sorry.
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-1
11:15AM on 06/23/2014
Well, I sorry. Im not familiar with any of his work. Heard of a few, but I never seen any of the movies he made.
Well, I sorry. Im not familiar with any of his work. Heard of a few, but I never seen any of the movies he made.
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+0
10:44AM on 06/23/2014

Oh, man! 2nd week in a row that...

... I have to pass. I've never seen any of his movies. But I will answer to one of your questions: "Shouldn't Mr. Argento be allowed to do whatever the hell he wants?". Ummm... Of course not. This is Movie Jail. That's like saying people in real life have the right to commit a crime just because they've done good deeds.
... I have to pass. I've never seen any of his movies. But I will answer to one of your questions: "Shouldn't Mr. Argento be allowed to do whatever the hell he wants?". Ummm... Of course not. This is Movie Jail. That's like saying people in real life have the right to commit a crime just because they've done good deeds.
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10:17AM on 06/23/2014

The defense is weak for this one

Of course, he has the right to do what he wants, which defendant doesn't? But if you look at what the goal of this column is, how many of the people who had a guilty verdict made worse movies than Argento did, and for a longer period of time?

Definitely guilty.
Of course, he has the right to do what he wants, which defendant doesn't? But if you look at what the goal of this column is, how many of the people who had a guilty verdict made worse movies than Argento did, and for a longer period of time?

Definitely guilty.
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9:31AM on 06/23/2014
Who the f is this guy?!
Who the f is this guy?!
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9:51AM on 06/23/2014
I agree, not the best column for some unheard of dude.
I agree, not the best column for some unheard of dude.
10:14AM on 06/23/2014
lol
lol
8:33AM on 06/23/2014

Not cool

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8:50AM on 06/23/2014
Re: your link - that sucks, man! I wish him a speedy recovery.
Re: your link - that sucks, man! I wish him a speedy recovery.
-2
8:08AM on 06/23/2014

Ooh, this one stings.

I'm not sure I can justify a "not guilty" vote here per the original conceit of this column. Sorry, Argento...I even stuck with you as far as "Do You Like Hitchcock?"... but I just can't anymore. I'll gladly rewatch your older films over and over while you serve your sentence.
I'm not sure I can justify a "not guilty" vote here per the original conceit of this column. Sorry, Argento...I even stuck with you as far as "Do You Like Hitchcock?"... but I just can't anymore. I'll gladly rewatch your older films over and over while you serve your sentence.
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7:52AM on 06/23/2014
The man hasn't made some great films of late but the films he's done on the early years outweigh any of his previous work. Not guilty.
The man hasn't made some great films of late but the films he's done on the early years outweigh any of his previous work. Not guilty.
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7:16AM on 06/23/2014
It's true that his films, as of late, aren't as good as his films in the 70s or 80s. But Argento's work has a special place in my heart - the use of gore, very bright colors, etc. There's something special about it. Not guilty for me.
It's true that his films, as of late, aren't as good as his films in the 70s or 80s. But Argento's work has a special place in my heart - the use of gore, very bright colors, etc. There's something special about it. Not guilty for me.
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6:39AM on 06/23/2014
He's got a niche genre and sometimes he gets carried away with it. Not the best comparison, but it kind of reminds me of Robert Rodriguez, though Argento's back-catalogue of films is, on the whole, more impressive. Fans of giallo know what they're getting into when they watch a horror movie of that genre - over the top, violent, kitschy yet oddly stylish and elegant, and that's what Argento delivers, so I guess not guilty.
He's got a niche genre and sometimes he gets carried away with it. Not the best comparison, but it kind of reminds me of Robert Rodriguez, though Argento's back-catalogue of films is, on the whole, more impressive. Fans of giallo know what they're getting into when they watch a horror movie of that genre - over the top, violent, kitschy yet oddly stylish and elegant, and that's what Argento delivers, so I guess not guilty.
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