Dario Argento: The Man, The Myth & The Magic Review

Author: Alan Jones

Originally released almost a decade ago as Profondo Argento, Alan Jones really is the man to be doing a book on Dario Argento. He’s be working as an onsite journalist since Argento’s Opera and, Giallo aside, hasn’t missed a set report since. His love for the genre and broad appreciation for cinema as a whole marks Jones as a man in the know who can deliver fact and fact on the fictions. Jones also has the sturdy reputation of being brutally honest in his opinions (which is a rare thing these days as it is hard to get yourself positioned anywhere in the game without “playing it” to a degree.  Jones has had the years, and the advantage of being one of the few around in his day to not have to worry too much about such things. These days his name is so well renowned and he has dug himself in tightly with his work and audience that to try to tarnish his work be like trying to scratch gold. In short… Expect high quality and little bullshit in his writing.

The original run of the book sold out, and due to the demand Jones has returned to the subject and updated his book to the present. This time round the book is called Dario Argento: The Man, The Myth, & The Magic and almost 100 extra pages have been put together covering everything from Do You like Hitchcock up to Argento’s forthcoming film Dracula 3D.

Jones has refused to even touch the original text leaving it as it is – simply giving the inside of the book a two-part divider. Primo Tempo is the original text, Secondo Temp is now the new section of the book (a neat reference to Italian cinema screenings).

Anyone who has seen a copy of the original print of the book will know already how well it has been put together. There is a great selection of stills, poster art and behind the scenes photography (sometimes by Jones himself – Watch out for Alan in the days when he still had hair).

Jones covers every film Dario directed, but also had a hand in writing and producing. There will of course be mention of his work then associated with George Romero, and also the many films he produced for the wonderful Michele Soavi.

Also throughout Jones has inserted various one to one interviews he has had with various cast and crew along the way. If you want to get more of an in depth feel for each film Jones prints not just his own opinion, but the viewpoint of various others on each film.

The book also comes with introductions from Argento himself as well as UK critic Mark Kermode. This is the first stop for any Argento fan – be you new or old. It’s all here.

Steven Hurst

Share this!