Lucio Fulci left behind a legacy steeped in horror—dozens of films ranging from sex romps, spaghetti westerns to science fiction socio-political fables—after his death in 1996 from complications with diabetes. Coined the godfather of gore alongside maestro Dario Argento, Lucio Fulci can be instantly recognized by fans of horror for his contribution to the ever-fluctuating zombie genre with Zombi 2, a 1978 spiritual successor to George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead, titled Zombi for Italian audiences. Fulci followed up Zombi 2’s box office success—grossing more internationally than Dawn—with City of the Living Dead in 1980 and The Beyond in 1981. Both tackle themes of religion and the supernatural, and showcase some of Fulci’s more inspired splatter moments; a power drill through the brain, a face doused in acid. For fans of giallo—a genre blending mystery, murder, and psychological elements with that of the slasher genre—Lucio Fulci had been a household name since 1969’s One on Top of the Other; a film that heavily prefigured the shift into erotic thrillers of the 1990s, such as Paul Verhoeven’s Basic Instinct. However, his garish visual flare and the sleek stylistic choice of the giallo genre wouldn’t stalk hand-in-hand until Don’t Torture a Duckling; Fulci’s lambaste of the Catholic Church. Dealing heavily in the sin of sex, Duckling would ultimately find itself blacklisted all around Europe, marking it as Fulci’s most controversial examination of religion.
Tag: Lucio Fulci
Written by Kris Tronerud
“(The Zombies) are alienated creatures who live on the fringes of societyâ€¦ the revenge of those defeated in life.â€
– Lucio Fulci
As the crunching sound of slow, shambling footsteps and ominous musical cues are heard, he (or she) lurches onto the screen, slow, rotting, dangerous and… dead. Itâ€™s that favourite cinematic baddie of eighties film, the only movie monster thatâ€™s easier to get away from than the Mummy: the Zombie! Briefly popular in the 30â€™s in such films as White Zombie and Val Lewtonâ€™s I Walked with a Zombie, the zombie has made a roaring (shuffling?) comeback in such recent hommages and remakes as 28 Days Later, Shaun of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead and zombie pioneer George Romeroâ€™s long awaited sequel Land of the Dead; and while the general filmgoing public probably thinks of Romeroâ€™s Night of the Living Dead as the start of the World-wide Zombie film craze of the 80â€™s, that scurrilous honor actually belongs to another film, the still-notorious Zombie, directed by the late, lamented Lucio Fulci.