The final installment of the "Three Mothers" trilogy. A young American art student, Sarah, "unwittingly opens an ancient urn that unleashes the demonic power of the world's most powerful witch. As a scourge of suicides pla... more »gue the city and witches from all over the world converge on Rome to pay homage, Sarah must use all her own psychic powers to stop the 'Mother of Tears' before her evil conquers the world."« less
James B. (wandersoul73) from LINDALE, TX Reviewed on 6/24/2009...
A very fitting end to Argento's witch trilogy.
This Mother made me shed tears alright... tears of joy!
D. Wilson | NY by way of Cali | 09/28/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If there is one thing that two seasons of the often underwhelming TV series Masters Of Horror gave us, it was a rejuvinated Dario Argento. The Italian director delivered a pair of entries(Jenifer and Pelts) that stand not only as some of the best from the series, but also some of the best material(and most extreme) that he had done in nearly 10 years(Opera from 1987 being his last great work in my opinion), and showcased that he still had the ability to disturb and entertain. Gone was much of his famous trademarks-- inventive camerawork, use of heavy colored lighting, and artistic quirkiness; which were now replaced with more straightforward and solid pacing and scenes of shocking grue. With Mother Of Tears, Argento uses that same aforementioned formula from his Masters Of Horror episodes, except now stretched into full-length form AND used to complete his 28-years-in-the-making "mothers" trilogy of films(begining in 1977 with Suspiria, and it's sequel Inferno from 1980). The movie follows Sarah(poorly acted by Dario's own daughter Asia Argento), a museum worker who unwittingly unleashes the evil of the Mother of Tears on Rome when she opens an ancient cask... hijinx ensue and feature some of the Italian maestro's most excellent moments of depravity ever, including(but not limited to) stangulation by one's own intestines, baby cannibalism, and impalement(Cannibal Holocaust style!). Throw in some solid atmoshere, brisk pacing, tons of nudity(even some full-frontal for the gents), and a fantasic jump scare towards the middle of the movie(so good I had to watch it twice in a row), and we have a definite winner here(all that was missing was a soundtrack by Goblin). Between the joy of seeing Dario Argento's return from Hacksville(where Tobe Hooper and George Romero unfortunately still reside) and the amount of fun watching this provided, I have no choice but to deliver a rare 5 star rating... not to mention that I feel the film does catch some unnecassarily harsh critism due to Argento being the director; let's face it, if this was some nobody fresh out of film school he'd be heralded as the "next big thing" in horror cinema. Still, this isn't a true return to form for Argento as far as his classic style is concerned... it IS a return for Argento to making a great horror movie though(and that's a start right?)-- ABSOLUTELY RECOMMENDED!"
Not Suspiria, but a lot of fun.
Puzzle box | Kuwait | 09/10/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"There seems to be alot of mixed reviews for Dario Argento's Mother Of Tears, the latest conclusion to the trilogy of the three mothers which began with Susperia and followed up with Inferno. It's the type of film that you either love or hate, while the film wasn't exactly perfect I still thought it was quite enjoyable and very entertaining. The main reason why some people were complaining was because of the acting was horrible, I also agree with this but then again Argento's films are known for their bad acting so I'm already used to that and the storyline was incoherent and there were a couple of weak characters but what really makes this film great was the stylish cinematography and over the top death and gore scenes which were just amazing, there was some stuff in here that was truly shocking even for me and I didn't even expect that. Dario Argento still knows how to create an artistic death scene, he definitely has not lost his touch. I honestly thought it was way better than most of his recent stuff. And to think that some Argento fans were disappointed by this, the film was great but it did have a few flaws but all these flaws aside I have to admit that it was his best film in years. Anyway the film was about a mysterious urn, which is dug up during an excavation. The urn is then sent to Rome Italy for study where an archeologist named Sarah (Asia Argento) gets her hands on the mysterious object and proceeds to study it alongside her friend Giselle. However when Giselle is brutally murdered before Sarah can even start the background check on the artifact, she begins to realize that something sinister lurks within the urn and it has it's sights set specifically on her. Terror and chaos is unleashed upon Rome and Sarah who is very skeptical of the occult discovers that she has some exceptional powers. After witnessing a grizzly murder, the ominous kidnapping of a friend's son and a group of witches that seem intent on killing her, she goes on a quest to find the cause behind the madness and discover the extent of her powers. The plot might sound cheesy but its not, the film had a very weird and dark atmosphere and it had a couple of creepy and horrific scenes that are guaranteed to satisfy any hardcore Argento fan. Theres this one scene that starts off at the beggining of the film where Gisele who is Sarah's friend gets disembowled then gets strangled by her own intestines while being stabbed repeatedly in the mouth and stomach and its all shown in graphic detail, that basically shows how gory this film is. There is also a short but amusing cameo from Udo Kier as a priest who helps out Sarah. Mother Of Tears definitely feels and looks like an Argento film. It has the Italian setting, the use of some Italian dialogue and alot of bloody moments. Then there's also the strange, creepy and weird moments which Argento is famous for adding into his brand of horror films. The story of the movie is intriguing and very eerie, as it follows the third witch of the "Mother" series The Mother Of Tears, a witch who thrives and derives her powers from the pain, suffering, and death of others. Along with the power to drive people to murder, suicide, and madness she also has many followers, including a group of witches. As you'll see in the film most of these witches have really bad hair and makeup and some of their acting was way over the top and laughable. Anyway the film was definitely worth while and was nicely shot with some great atmosphere and locations and plenty of memorable scenes in it making this one of Dario Argento's best although Asia's acting could have been alot better, I highly recommend this to Italian horror fans check it out."
For DIE-HARD ARGENTO Fans ONLY! The Legendary Director retur
Woopak | Where Dark Asian Knights Dwell | 09/25/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Legendary horror filmmaker Dario Argento returns as writer and director, the man has definitely made a name for himself for his mischievous flair and touch of the macabre. MOTHER OF TEARS: The Third Mother is the supposed third installment in his "Three Mothers" trilogy which began with "Suspiria" and its follow up "Inferno". Now, the question on everyone`s mind; is it worth the wait after more than 2 decades?
When an ancient artifact becomes uncovered in an old cemetery, it proves to be the harbinger of doom. The murder of an art historian is just the beginning as Sarah Mandy (Asia Argento) is caught up in a frightening situation that she doesn't have the knowledge to grasp. Sarah is pursued by forces beyond her understanding and she enlists the aid of museum specialist Michael Pierce but he proves ineffective. Amidst the widespread chaos that ensues in Rome, Sarah then approaches a local exorcist and even an alchemist for aid in hopes of uncovering the mystery of her mother and her connection to a coven of evil witches. Mother Lachrimarum (Moran Atias) has risen and plans to orchestrate the second fall of Rome unless Sarah can find her hidden power and stop this dark witch.
The Italian maestro of horror returns to his tale of witchcraft, chaos, evil and darkness. Part of me is very pleased that the legendary horror director had stepped up to finish his "witches" trilogy. After the very disappointing "The Card Player", one wouldn't be hard-pressed to think that he has lost his touch but thankfully, his "Masters of Horror" entry "Pelts" did have its moments and it gave hints that Argento still had it. Thankfully, amazon friends Puzzle Box and Dave K. have caused me to lower my expectations, nothing could compare to "Suspiria", which is arguably Argento's finest film, so I approached this film with an open mind. While "Mother of Tears" may somehow fit the trilogy, if you elevate your expectations, it may result in a timid laughter.
The film does start fairly strong. The discovered ancient artifact is an interesting enough concept although it is a hugely unoriginal one. Then again, what could past for a TRULY original horror film anyway these days? Sometimes I feel that Horror filmmaking may have already peaked and it shouldn't be how original a horror film is but what the director does with a concept. The film does have a fair amount of blood and gore, in this unrated version, we get to see more gruesome deaths and nudity. Death by intestine strangling, literally screwing the mouth open, a spear driven to women's vaginal areas, infant slaughter, impalements, all contribute to the film's main draw: "Brutality". Argento doesn't hold back when it comes to these elements.
The plot elements does have potential. Sarah's investigation into her past displayed a lot of ambition, accompanied by eerily creepy scenes mildly enhanced by CGI with the old-school blood and gore. I found some elements mildly interesting but unfortunately, these scenes were only used to delay the film's outcome. The proceedings didn't exactly help the film's resolution and I felt that it started running out of gas in the 45 minute mark. I also felt that the chaos caused by the supposed "rise" of Mother Lachimarum is severely underused. Where is the army when all these hinted wanton acts of violence, rape and murder is occurring? Some characters were merely plot devices, supporting characters were so unconvincing and once they served their purpose, you guessed it, they will suffer a grisly death. Some scenes were also too convenient.
The dialogue in the film feels a little too perfunctory for my tastes. It just proved too "card board" and it isn't helped along by the casts' very "robotic" acting. I also wondered whether the film was dubbed in English and was originally meant for another language. The so-called "Mother of Tears" was too underwhelming; after all the overlong dialogue and fact-finding, this is how she is finally overcame? I'm NOT spoiling anything, as you would know that the bad guy has to be beat. I have to admit that Moran Atias' scenes of almost "very" nude may be worth the price of the dvd itself.
Ultimately, Dario Argento's heart seems to be in the right place when he made this film. However, it was quite obvious that he was being held back due to the film's measly budget. The blood, guts and gore were very nice to look at, (despite the fact it isn't anything new) and the back story of the "Three Mothers" does tie up some loose ends. However, the film does feel that it came straight out of the Hollywood oven and made to fit more "mainstream" tastes. Still, the film is a decent dose of lusty, brutal fun that is a welcome change from all the horror remakes we've been plagued with of late. The film does feel quite ridiculous and rather rudimentary. But it's very nice for fans of Dario Argento to witness that the horror legend can still dream up ludicrous mayhem and violent deaths.
Recommended Timidly, RENT it first [3 Stars]
A (Semi?) Solid Return To Form
J. McHenry | Detroit, MI | 10/01/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
Ten reasons to like this film: the soundtrack by Simonetti is great; the credits are beautiful; the cinematography is often gorgeous even on DVD; Asia's performance is solid; the Mother, while no actress, is very hot; it has Udo Kier; the street witches are uniquely Argento; the ape is cool; the script is more coherent than haters claim; and Fulci's effects man worked on it! Also, it's never boring and much better than Argento's TV work. And Daria Nicolodi is back, if unrecognizable. So see it. As for the Vid Watchdog attack on MOT, they seem to have forgotten that the third mother enjoys cruelty; it's her theme. Also, they give Suspiria a pass when its script is little better, and Inferno is mostly a (delicious) disaster. Their claims of misogyny are problematic. If audiences don't feel the characters are in danger, where's the scare? Gratuitous cruelty (and stupidity, in comedies) is inevitable when movies compete to be the latest and greatest. (Welcome to Capitalism, folks. I guess you thought it couldn't have a downside.) The point of horror "art" is to explore the dark stuff on purpose - safely, from a distance. So when the Mother licks up a dying woman's tears, that ties in to the "mother of tears" title pretty well, don't you think? The lack of crane shots or primary colored sets is an intentional step away from his old style, says the director. So no points detracted there. Who knows - or cares - why some are so upset about the monkey. Isn't it enough for it to be weird and unexpected? That fits nicely with the characterization of Argento as a sort of Surrealist. Sure, there are plenty of sloppy moments here. And beautiful ones, too. But watch again for when Asia discovers the lair of the Mother - if you don't think that lighting is intentional, and very cool, you probably can't be won over to the Argento camp. So: no masterpiece, but plenty of bizarre and suprising stuff to keep us happy."
The Father Of Horror Brings Us The "Mother Of Tears"
J. B. Hoyos | Chesapeake, VA | 10/03/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Italian Hitchcock, Dario Argento, brings the world to the brink of disaster in the "Mother Of Tears," the third installment in the Three Mothers Trilogy.
The Three Mothers are evil witches who spread death and destruction wherever they go. In the first film "Suspiria," the Mother of Sighs is destroyed in Freiburg, Germany by ballet student Suzy Banyon. In the next film "Inferno," the Mother of Sorrows is destroyed in New York City by music student Mark Elliot. I have written detailed reviews for both "Suspiria" and "Inferno."
In the third installment, art restoration student Sarah Mandy has opened an ancient urn, restoring power to the Mother of Tears, the most evil and beautiful of the Three Mothers. Chaos reigns n the streets of Rome. Citizens commit vicious, unexplainable crimes against each other as witches all over the world converge on the ancient city. Sarah races against time to kill the Mother of Tears before Rome falls again.
"Mother of Tears" is a family project. Director Dario Argento casts his daughter Asia Argento in the role of Sarah Mandy. She has starred in numerous films which her father has directed such as "The Stendahl Syndrome" (her debut), "The Phantom of the Opera" (Dario Argento's only gothic horror film to date), and "Trauma" (a giallo). Her superb performance as a gritty, gutsy police officer in "The Stendahl Syndrome" won my respect for her as an actress. Daria Nicolodi stars as the spirit of Sarah's murdered mother and is the real-life mother of Asia Argento and ex-girlfriend of Dario Argento. Nicolodi was the one who gave Dario Argento the idea for "Suspiria." She has also starred in numerous of his films such as "Deep Red," "Inferno," "Tenebre," and "Phenomena" - all of which are excellent Italian gialli except for the occult thriller "Inferno."
The plot, the gore, and the music of "Mother of Tears" reminded me much of "Demons" and "Demons 2," which were produced by Dario Argento and directed by Lamberto Bava. Instead of zombies, "Mother of Tears" has demon possessed individuals who are committing atrocious acts. The gory makeup is provided by Sergio Stivaletti and the pounding rock score is provided by Claudio Simonetti of the disbanded Goblin. Both of these highly talented men have worked with Dario Argento on numerous projects. In the film, there was some unnecessary use of gore and sexual perversion. Fortunately, it only hindered the plot rather than overwhelm it as in the case of "Jenifer" and "Pelts," episodes that Dario Argento recently directed for the cable series "Masters of Horror."
The gorgeous blue and red color scheme that was prevalent in "Suspiria" and "Inferno" is not found in "Mother of Tears." Therefore, it lacks the nightmarish, dreamlike quality of its two predecessors. However, this movie had a greater feeling of impending disaster, a disaster that would affect the entire world and not just a ballet school or high rise luxury apartment building.
Indeed, "Mother of Tears" is not the classic mega hit that was "Suspiria." Nevertheless, it is an enjoyable horror movie that can stand alone. This film will terrify and repulse you with its dark, barbaric images. The "Mother of Tears" is recommended viewing for fans of modern horror and for fans of Dario Argento, the Father of Horror. "