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Torture Chamber (2013)

DVD Cover (Vivendi Visual Entertainment)
Director:
Dante Tomaselli Dante Tomaselli
Starring:
Vincent Pastore Vincent Pastore
Christie Sanford Christie Sanford
Lynn Lowry Lynn Lowry
Ron Millkie Ron Millkie
Carmen LoPorto Carmen LoPorto

2.9 / 10 - Overall Rating

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Genres: Horror, Religious Horror, Sadistic Horror, Slasher Film
Members of a religious community try to save the soul of a possessed boy and his child cohorts after he escapes from an asylum and starts murdering anyone who gets in his way. --IMDb
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Review by Bill Wolford
Added: December 12, 2012
Dante Tomaselli is one of the most overlooked, and underrated horror directors that I know of. He has consistently put out great movies (Desecration, Horror and Satan's Playground) with barely a whisper from the mainstream. Is this a good thing? Yes and no. On one hand it keeps his maniacal genius to those chosen few lucky enough to find and appreciate his movies. I however, would like to see him strike it big. He deserves it. Not because multi-millions would change his ideas one iota, but because his vision would appeal to the masses. They just don't know it yet.

His latest film, Torture Chamber, is just the latest in a line of fever dream films designed to scare us, disturb us, and make us think about the society that we live in. Jimmy (Carmen LoPorto) is a young burn victim who seems to have special powers. He also seems to have a mind and soul that come straight from the bowels of hell. So when he decides to get revenge on everyone who he feels has done him wrong, recruiting and brainwashing a group of other young burn victims to help him in his plan, it seems as if nothing will be able to stand in his way. Jimmy's older brother, a priest, has tried to exorcise him several times without success. And his mother (Tomaselli regular Christie Sanford), is overtly religious as well, trying to find help for her youngest son, even though she was blinded by him. As the bodies pile up, will anyone be able to stop Jimmy's reign of demonic terror?

This is a movie that will leave you thinking. It will also immerse you in its intensity, and its atmosphere. It could almost qualify as a "drug movie". You know, Pink Floyd's The Wall, The Wizard Of Oz? That type of drug movie. It transports you. It takes you places. Almost all of his movies do this. There is not as much abstract horror imagery in this film as there is in "Horror" or "Desecration". But what it lacks in imagery, it makes up for in the music (oh, boy does it ever!). The music for the film was also done by Tomaselli, as is it should be. The director of a film should have the best ideas of how he or she wants the music to sound. The soundtrack here is intensely haunting. Voices and screams swirl and moan, and even take over for some of the dialog at points, transporting you into Jimmy's world. A world where hell lives on earth, and God is dead.

Also of note for Tomaselli fans is a cameo by Danny Lopes, who has had either major or minor roles in all of Dante's films. Knowing that there are several cast members who have appeared in previous films by the director makes the film seem more welcoming in some way. It somehow feels like we know the actors personally, and wonder what kinds of hell that Tomaselli is going to be putting them through this time. Lynn Lowry (from George Romero's The Crazies) also has a small role as one of Jimmy's school teachers. It's nice to see her getting some good roles recently, as it seemed as if she were away too long.

Torture Chamber has not been released yet. But it will be soon. Until then, you have Dante's other three films to digest, and I suggest that you do so at your earliest convenience. He is deserving of much, much more attention than he gets from movie goers. Give him and his new film a chance. I swear that you won't regret it. 9/10.
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