Monday, October 14, 2013

Versace, Black Sunday are both Italian Horror Movies

Drug crazed fashion designer Donatelle Versace struggled with a pesky family and  cutthroat high fashion competition in the Halloween Lifetime movie “The House of Versace” with Gina Gershin as DV.  The actor who was Veronica Mars' dad  appears briefly as Gianni Versace.

The Versaces lived large in the 90s when business was good with mansions in Miami Beach, Italy and elsewhere.  Keeping up appearances has got to be tough.  The roof came crashing in on the enterprise after Gianni was murdered by Mad Andy and DV took over the business, running it into the ground with unmarketable rags.  Driven by hatred for her deceased brother who basically cut her out of his will and other issues, she binged on cocaine and whatnot.

Finally the day of reckoning came with the family intervention and her trip to a drug rehabilitation facility.  Rather than some Minneapolis dump, she is comfortably housed in a tropical facility where she is deprived of her stiletto pumps. Such an ordeal!  Refreshed from  rehab and sober as a judge she is reinstated in the House of Versace where she apologies to the help for her bad behavior.  So the melodrama ends on a sweet note.

Much is made of the Versace  designed revealing dress that actress Elizabeth Hurley wore to an awards ceremony.  That dress brought a lot of positive buzz to the Versace brand but if Ms. Hurley had appeared in public in a gunny sack with her puppies popping out the results may have been the same.

Nightmare alert:  Lifetime followed the movie with a Behind the Story documentary on the Versaces and let me tell you the real life DV suffers by comparison with the actress Gershin.  Don’t let the kids watch.

Make a double feature of it with the Italian Gothic horror classic “Black Sunday” featuring Barbara Steele as Katia who is revisited by a presumably dead witch who was horribly executed.  Katia is treated badly but then she wasn’t tops at house keeping with her fog enshrined dungeon like mansion decorated with cobwebs.    Mario Bava directed “Black Sunday,” a horror masterpiece in black and white from the ‘60s.

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