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Review Dark Glasses a.k.a. Occhiali neri (2022): Highly flawed but still entertaining!

genre: horror, mystery, thriller

Dark Glasses is a Dario Argento light. It has a lot of similarities to previous works, but at the same time feels a little different. Compared to Giallo with Adrien Brody this is a vast improvement. Although that might not be saying much since one could and should expect a lot better from an experienced director like Argento. Then again, the man is 81 years old. And still has a hunger to explore the dark and perverse sides of humanity. Let's face it, that never gets tiring. Besides, the film is immensely fast-paced and full of energy. Hardly the thing you would expect from someone who is burnt out. If he is game, I am all in. 

So what can I say about Dark Glasses. Almost like it's a requirement of Argento films. But there is a lot of overacting and annoying behaviour on the part of the main character. Instead of keeping it low-key and being quiet when hunted by a serial killer, she keeps screaming and yelling like a lunatic. I wished Chin, a Chinese boy, (I know right) was allowed to set her straight and slap her face. But he is a gentleman through and through. Even immensely worldly and mature for his age. Far more than Diana played by Ilenia Pastorelli. At first, I thought she was going to be among the first to be killed, where another actress would step in. Unfortunately, we are stuck with her. Surprisingly, though, she will grow on you. At times, I even liked her. I guess that most of her early behaviour was to show she was tough and not someone to mess with. Considering her line of work, luxury escort, that is very understandable and probably necessary. When disaster strikes and gets blinded in an accident after she got chased by a serial killer, she calms down considerably. It's almost admirable how quickly she adjusts to her handicap. Naturally, with some help in the form of Rita (Asia Argento) and Nerea, a German Shepherd. 

Dark Glasses does seem to have some style, but not as much you would expect from the genre. Dark Glasses feels a little grittier. Especially when it comes to the murders. Argento doesn't spare you. It's quite bloody and gory. While his previous films were always focused on the mystery elements. Here it's not that important. I mean, there are no red herrings or other misdirections. Still, there are many tense moments, especially in the finale, where the serial killer seems unstoppable. The ending is brutal but satisfying. Plus Chin gets rewarded for his patience and putting up with Diana.

Overall, I had a good time. And I wouldn't mind Argento making more films like these, although preferably more like his older films where mystery and violence go hand in hand.

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