Dante's Inferno

Dante's Inferno

DVD - 2008
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Dante is a hard-living hoodie-clad slacker who will take you on a gritty tour of Hell that bears a disturbing resemblance to our own world. In an attempt to save his lost soul, Dante is led through the seven rings of Hell.
Publisher: [United States] : Ricochet Releasing, [2008]
Edition: Widescreen
ISBN: 9781934921104
1934921106
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (ca. 78 min.) : sd., col. ; 4 3/4 in

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Nursebob
Jan 17, 2015

Sean Meredith’s outrageous little film uses meticulously drawn cardboard puppets on an elaborate toy stage to give the epic poem a very hip modern spin without losing any of its satirical wit. Dante, an unshaven twenty-something slacker, wakes up alone and disoriented in a decidedly low rent neighbourhood after pulling an all-night bender. He’s rescued from his predicament by the poet Virgil who proceeds to take him on a guided tour of the nearby city, which as luck would have it turns out to be Hell itself. What follows is a heady mix of camp horror and political satire as the two men journey deeper into a colourfully contemporary Hades where the souls of the damned suffer some updated punishments for age-old sins. The lustful are trapped in an endless red-light district; hypocrites are doomed to wander forever dressed up as corporate logos (Strom Thurmond in a Mrs. Butterworth outfit…priceless!); and in the infernal city of Dis, now a yuppie condo development, heretics such as L. Ron Hubbard and the Ayatollah Khomeini spend eternity immersed in boiling jacuzzis. It soon becomes clear where Meredith’s political sympathies lie as we see many of George Bush’s cronies suffering one indignity or another all under the malevolent eyes of a Fox News helicopter. This is a gorgeously executed work that incorporates low-tech effects and bright comic book action with an irrepressible energy that’s impossible to ignore. Meredith stays true to the original text while at the same time producing something highly original and fiercely intelligent. Two thumbs up!

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