As with Stanley Kubrick, I have a love/hate relationship with Dario Argento. On one hand, I’ve always been a big giallo fan, and The Bird With The Crystal Plumage is one of my all time favorite movies. In terms of sound design, for example, he can be every bit as sadistic as Kubrick. In fact, I’m not willing to argue who learned it from whom. I suspect the influence may have been mutual.
On the other hand, I had a sneaking suspicion that Phenomena might have at least slightly “borrowed” from Kiss Of The Tarantula. An adolescent girl who can control insects is mercilessly bullied by her peers and discovers a murder plot involving an authority figure. I assumed Phenomena’s Jennifer (Jennifer Connelly) would follow right in the footsteps of Kiss Of The Tarantula’s Susan.
Despite what I thought was a damn good prediction, I was wrong. In fact, take away the bugs, and these two movies have zero to do with each other. In fact, they don’t even both use insects.
Cuz tarantulas. Continue Reading