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Black Sunday

Black Sunday

1960
Horror
1h 27m
A vengeful witch and her fiendish servant return from the grave and begin a bloody campaign to possess the body of the witch's beautiful look-alike descendant (imdb)
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Black Sunday

1960
Horror
1h 27m
Your probable score
Avg Percentile 54.93% from 646 total ratings

Ratings & Reviews

(646)
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Rated 27 Jun 2016
85
63rd
Has occasional flashes of brilliance, but it's not the classic it could have been.
Rated 26 Jun 2014
75
72nd
This is a good-looking film - the lighting is very effective, bringing the well-composed B&W shots to life, and the set design and camerawork contribute to a creepy, gothic atmosphere. It starts really strongly, but becomes a bit uneven and unfulfilling towards the end. The dubbing on the version I saw was a bit ropey, but acceptable. Still, it's entertaining, and fans of Bava, Italian horror and even Hammer films (well-dressed academics battling evil?) will probably enjoy this.
Rated 14 Sep 2007
67
35th
The sets are fantastic, and there are some wonderful shots. But after the striking first part, the film gradually gets slower and less interesting, and the final act is rather anticlimactic.
Rated 05 Dec 2009
86
82nd
Cheesy at times yet creepy at others. Overall I really liked it. This was not a typical vampire movie as there were no wooden stakes, no garlic, and no fangs. I liked that about it. Very well-written and directed as well. The black and white cinematography looked great, utilizing shadows and light to make a great gothic atmosphere.
Rated 22 Jul 2009
84
81st
This is pretty impressive for a debut, a first-rate gothic horror film. The mood is appropriately creepy, the music is very good, the cinematography quite thoughtful and evocative. It's a little cheesy, but horror and cheese often go together well.
Rated 08 Sep 2009
74
40th
Starts off very creepy but it doesn't quite succeed in carrying that through the film.
Rated 07 Feb 2012
70
65th
She's cute and she's a witch and they kill her at the beginning in spectacular fashion and then she comes back and plays two roles and did I mention she's beautiful. She is.
Rated 18 Feb 2009
4
71st
"...the greatest gothic horror movie ever made in Italy."
Rated 31 Mar 2007
100
95th
Classic. Barbara Steele looks beautiful and like a corpse at the same time
Rated 23 Oct 2013
76
38th
Beautifully shot but curiously told. Barbara Steele has the perfect look for a wicked witch but she is so underutilized that I am left a little annoyed at the end. Still worth watching, especially since it's an early Bava film.
Rated 21 Feb 2013
80
81st
Strikingly beautiful black-and-white photography and great sense of horror. If it weren't for the wooden acting and horrible dialogues I would consider it a masterpiece of Gothic Horror.
Rated 22 May 2019
50
29th
The striking opening scene is great, but - though visually impressive as well, particularly for a directorial debut - the rest of the film is not very interesting at all.
Rated 22 Jan 2022
75
41st
Bava's definitely got some impressively creepy and even brutal shots (the mask stuff can hold up against anything these days) that must've made this ahead of its time, but there's very little surprise or momentum sandwiched between the setup & climax. Even the climax is a bit anti-climactic as neither of the 2 leads or lead monster does much. & since they barely know each other the romantic angle's meh. I do wonder how the hell he got Steele to age & de-age - if it's a dissolve it's invisible
Rated 01 Feb 2016
76
70th
Practically an archetype for gothic horror and its great. Witches and castles and hero doctors and secret passages, and this is Italian so above all FOG.
Rated 07 Apr 2013
79
64th
An absolutely brutal film.
Rated 03 Aug 2016
82
88th
The chiaroscuro, the practical effects and the intense search for a moral ambiguity -- the witch is burnt among people dancing and laughing, and even though the couple ends with a kiss, the last is given to the fire burning the witch -- make this a true powerful gothic horror film, with Bava's skillful, quick and intelligent camera floating around in every which way it can -- from long pandering shots to strong closeups and raccords. It's christianity (again) seeking purity through violence.
Rated 03 Jun 2014
80
65th
Fantastic atmosphere and overall look. It's a tiny story, which helps focus it. The biggest problem is the dubbing, which is really unfortunate. Aside from that, it's a really effective horror film that has aged really well.
Rated 09 Mar 2017
60
38th
It's got a beautiful Gothic setting and Barbara Steele's hypnotic eyes going for it. Some of the performances are more wooden than the surrounding woodland, but the English dubbing might have been to blame (at least partially) for that.
Rated 04 Jul 2016
75
66th
A wonderful horror film with powerful macabre imagery and spellbinding gothic ambiance. Very strong start and finish but the middle undoubtedly drags quite a bit. The story is fine although nothing really special or exciting. The atmosphere is fantastic though and a couple of scenes actually kinda spooked me out despite the well worn gothic horror style. Mario Bava was such a brilliant craftsman his films are always worth watching just for the exquisite visuals.
Rated 19 Jan 2010
60
41st
A great intro and perfect casting in Barbara Steele. The film has some really nice photography and a few interesting ideas and techniques. Unfortunately for a 86 minute movie it manages to have pacing problems as well as awful dubbing on some of the secondary characters.
Rated 18 Jun 2008
35
34th
Atmospheric but ultimately empty italian horror flick. Highly influential, which only means that it's worth watching but not necesarilly that it's any good.
Rated 25 Mar 2009
75
54th
The pic that put graveyard beauty Steele -- cast here as a reanimated witch -- on the horror-movie map also represents one of gothic great Bava's most atmospheric excursions.
Rated 11 Apr 2018
72
24th
Doesn't live up to the excitement of its introduction. Nice visuals here and there but lacking in everything else.
Rated 17 Nov 2019
76
41st
Some nice shots and set designs, but besides that, there's not much here.
Rated 08 Oct 2022
72
51st
Lots of crucifixes, shadows, secret passages, and some pretty good gore. Bava’s classic isn’t very scary but it succeeds in nailing a good gothic tone.
Rated 07 Apr 2009
2
8th
Ish. Some atmospheric photography, but this may mark the beginning of sick modern horror and the end of horror classicism. Not Freder's cup of fur at all.
Rated 05 Jan 2014
88
84th
A Maldição do Demônio estreava há 60 anos na Itália. Como feminista e simpatizante de Satã, eu daria uma nota melhor se a bruxa satanista tivesse ganho no final. Rá! Como o revi recentemente, hoje só o vi hoje com os comentários em áudio do Tim Lucas que são excelentes (ainda tô lutando para ler aquele livro maravilhoso de dele sobre o Bava no tablet). Box Versátil A Arte de Mario Bava.
Rated 28 Jul 2013
55
19th
Starts with promise, but ends up being totally forgettable.
Rated 20 Oct 2014
64
69th
My first Bava film is also his first credited feature film, is an atmospheric gothic vampire/witch film. At first I was very impressed by b&w cinematography and sets. Oh, and of course Barbara Steele, who is creepy and beautiful at the same time, much like this film on the whole. The story, though, doesn't offer any surprises, and as the film progresses the boredom slowly creeps up. Still better than most Universal or Hammer horror flicks.
Rated 16 Jul 2009
75
58th
La maschera del demonio: 9 // 6 // 5 // 7 // 9 // 10 // 7
Rated 10 May 2014
38
14th
Classic Italian horror that hasn't aged well. Stylistically it's pretty well-made, but acting and plot is often unintentionally funny.
Rated 02 Dec 2011
62
24th
#753
Rated 19 Dec 2008
64
28th
729
Rated 01 Nov 2013
76
63rd
It's aged enough that it can't really scare anymore, but it's still a fun time.
Rated 23 Sep 2009
91
73rd
No idea why I didn't like this movie as much as I do now after a long overdue second viewing. This film has a great performance from Steele, gorgeous black and white cinematography and style to match. It is also pretty creepy for an early 1960s flick. All hail gothic cinema.
Rated 25 Jan 2011
74
39th
Great opening, then pfffft.
Rated 20 Apr 2014
79
61st
79.000
Rated 06 Aug 2014
90
90th
Make this the first Bava you watch
Rated 05 Sep 2013
50
14th
Groundsmoke with a mind of its own. Sex and fear always close companions. And crosses as weapons. Despite its impressive attention to every gothic detail, the final product is mostly silly and occasionally disturbing.
Rated 21 Aug 2009
75
68th
Watch it in Italian, without the subtitles, if you can. Not saying that to be a purist, just that everything non-visual ruins the movie. The story you'll come up with in your head will be much better than the one in the film. Stunning and creepy otherwise.
Rated 10 Jan 2014
42
57th
The least interesting Bava film I've seen so far.
Rated 06 Feb 2007
68
88th
The essential Italian gothic horror film. Mario Bava makes great use of his limited budget with detailed sets, practical effects and inventive photography. Barbara Steele has an unique look that suits the film perfectly. While I do prefer Bava's later color films and best of Hammer horror, but it's still a pleasure to return to this every few years.
Rated 15 Jan 2010
64
28th
726
Rated 21 Jun 2011
67
71st
Good Movie
Rated 25 Aug 2008
85
75th
An average horror movie about witches, with a stunning cinematography.
Rated 10 Apr 2009
25
43rd
A stylish, though gruesome, horror movie.
Rated 28 Apr 2008
60
39th
Although undeniably well-shaped, the film is incredibly stiff. Despite not being engaging, it taste.
Rated 01 Nov 2017
68
49th
I never again want to hear the name "DOCTOR KRUVAJAN"
Rated 16 Dec 2015
65
4th
Nice looking, but fails to get any kind of traction until the final third.
Rated 18 Jan 2011
79
63rd
78.750
Rated 14 May 2017
70
71st
(Viewed in 2015): Bava generally wasn't as extreme as Argento or Fulci, so it's only natural that most of his work seems rather tame today and appears dated to the younger generations. Black Sunday would have been rather shocking in its time though, with its salacious blend of violence and eroticism, presented in an expressionist gothic style that is deeply atmospheric and borderline dreamy. Bava's ingenuity is evident in his use of practical effects, and Steele's presence is near otherwordly.
Rated 29 Oct 2009
70
65th
A minor work by Bava, but better than many films of the genre.
Rated 18 Aug 2018
90
77th
From what I can tell, there are three major versions - an 87min. Euro version with an English dub, the same 87min. with an Italian dub and English subtitles, and an 83 minute American version with a completely different English dub that actually significantly changes some lines and a different score. I'm not sure which is considered definitive, but I watched the 87 in Ita since the dub seemed less bad. The main draws are the sets and the cinematography so I'm sure either would be fine though.
Rated 06 Oct 2019
82
88th
(European "Mask of Satan" version with English dubs.) It looks very beautiful, the blocking and use of light and shadows is outstanding. The plot is very tight and efficient.
Rated 07 Oct 2019
62
35th
Yo I gotta say, I got a strong suspicion this movie inspired Phantom Blood.
Rated 15 Oct 2019
48
6th
It seems like every Hooptober I watch an acclaimed horror movie that I not only feel meh about, but strongly dislike. I think Black Sunday is that film this year. The introduction was promising, and then I found it to be a chore to finish. It was interesting to watch on the same day as "The Autopsy of Jane Doe." To avoid spoilers, I will leave you to figure out why.
Rated 10 Sep 2020
30
9th
Not very good.
Rated 24 Sep 2021
65
63rd
The sets, atmosphere, and cinematography were great the story was passable but the acting was quite silly and overdone.
Rated 18 Oct 2021
83
78th
Оценка - 80 Общая - 77 Нарратив - 5 Сценарий - 6.5 Постановка - 8.5 Целостность - 6.5 Монтаж - 5 Выполнение своей цели - 8.5 Флоу - 6.5 Жанр - 9 Культовость - 1 Сцены - 1 Личное - 8.5 Атмосфера - 9 Эмоции - 8 Саундтрек - 5.5 Синематографи - 8 Визуал - 9 Звук - 6 Продакшн дизайн - 9.5 Костюмы - 9 Грим - 8 Сложность
Rated 07 May 2022
70
58th
Take a shot every time someone shouts "Professor Kruvajan!" and you won't even be able to properly finish your mini-revieagifdoubgkndfansckxl
Rated 28 Oct 2023
68
35th
A fun enough but disappointing horror film from 1960. It's one of the many Italian films where they spoke multiple language in it and dubbed a couple of versions so there's no "best" version necessarily because there's always dubbing. I saw the English version as it was the main language of some of the leads. The gothic atmosphere and sets, etc, are excellent, but I was expecting a bit more given the film's reputation. The characters are generally boring. Steele has the perfect look for her role

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