Some horror films leave you waiting on the edge of your seat, with building crescendos of suspense and curiosity that ultimately come crashing down without quite delivering the terror you were expecting. Paura 3D- which means Fear in Italian- does exactly that.

The subtitled faux-Giallo piece from the Manetti Brothers (who also brought this year’s The Arrival of Wang to FrightFest too), see mechanic Ale convince two friends to have a party they’ll never forget in his client’s house.

Young, swaggering mechanic Ale (Domenico Diele) overhears a conversation between his boss and a rich client, the Marquis Lanzi (Pepe Servillo). Lanzi wants them to service one of his vintage cars whilst he’s in Switzerland for the weekend. Sensing an opportunity for a party, Ale and his mates – paranoid and jilted Simone (Lorenzo Pedrotti) and worrier Marco (Claudio Di Biagio) – head for the secluded mansion outside Rome, and begin making themselves at home.

The guys think they are in luck- they raid the place for champagne, food and make use of Lanzi’s home entertainment system whilst getting high and planning a party. All seems too good to be true- and that certainly is the case. Simone goes exploring the house only to find the wine cellar with a door bolted shut. He hears strange noises from behind the wall and soon realises they are not as alone in the mansion as they first thought.

The plot is a little flimsy but I enjoyed the interlacement of the character’s lives. We saw each of the boys separately giving some character depth and not knowing that their stories would overlap and become one.

The use of heavy metal and grimy rap lyrics throughout the film’s soundtrack act as precursors to the violence that is about to ensue. The loud heavy music make the scenes seem chaotic- yes it does suit the situation- three young boys partying, but the anger in the music connotes a sense of urgency and terror. A lot of the camera shots are from a distance as if the boys are being secretly followed and watched. The best shot is Simone looking through a crack in the wall to find out just who is in the bolted room- this creates real tension and the audience is desperate to see the full picture. The 3D is also really well done but lacks reason- why shoot a film like this in 3D? It doesn’t add to the story or fear factor at all.

The onslaught of violence that ensues once Simone figures out the secret behind the bolted door is sickening and at times unnecessary. There is little story to the rest of the plot- why does this room exist and what is Lanzi’s motive?

All we get is pornographic scenes mixed with torturous and gruesome killing sprees. A prolonged close-up of female genitalia is wholly distasteful and does not add to the narrative at all.

I was hoping for a beast or inbred in the cellar style shocker but instead got prolonged nudity,  a curious case of Stockholm syndrome and another Frightfest disappointment.

About The Author

Emily Stockham

Emily is from South London and has a degree in English Literature. Emily is a marketing assistant who writes about films and music in her spare time. Horror and grindhouse are her thing - although she will happily watch anything if it means a trip to the cinema.