Door Into Silence – Lucio Fulci (1991) – Movie Review

Door Into Silence - Movie poster from IMDB
Movie poster from IMDB

Originally published on this site here, in Italian.

Original Title: Le Porte Del Silenzio

Aka: Door To Silence

Year: 1991

Produced by: Filmirage

Directed by: Lucio Fulci

Written by: Lucio Fulci

Cinematography: Giancarlo Ferrando

Edited by: Rosanna Landi

Music by: Franco Piana

Make-up by: Pietro Tenoglio

Running time: approximately 87 minutes

Budget: According to Fulci “about 600 millions lire” (source: MacColl, Catriona (pref.), Romagnoli, Michele. L’Occhio Del Testimone. Il Cinema Di Lucio Fulci, II ed., Kappalab, Ferrara, 2015, p. 56)

Receipt: According to producer Aristide Massaccesi, the movie “didn’t even sell a brochure” (source: Nocturno)

Full Movie (ITA) from Minerva Pictures channel on YouTube


In 1988, after interrupting the direction of Zombi 3, Italian director Lucio Fulci, now in his sixties, works for small productions and for television1. These last movies, poor in their budget, are nevertheless full of ideas. From a belated nunsploitation (Demonia, 1989) to the meta-cinema (A Cat In The Brain, 1990), up to the family drama flavoured with horror (Voices From Beyond, 1991).

The last of these movies, which will also be the last movie directed by Lucio Fulci, is Door Into Silence, produced by Joe D’Amato’s Filmirage in 1991, and based on a story by Fulci himself, Le Porte Del Nulla2.

The plot: a car crash; a funeral in a cemetery; Mr. Melvin Devereux (John Savage), who went to the same cemetery to visit his father’s grave at the end of a business trip, is approached by a mysterious woman (Sandi Schultz) who says she knows him.

Then a substantially insane road movie starts, with Melvin who, as he returns home along the streets of Louisiana, among gospel choirs, jazz music and ferries on the rivers, comes into contact with an equally mysterious funeral director (Richard Castleman) who continuously blocks him the way.

That of Fulci, especially in the last phase of his career, is a poor cinema, it was said. And yet this movie somehow manages to hide it. In fact, apart from the permissions to shoot outdoors (which, being a road movie, may have been of a certain consistency) and the cars to be dirty and dented, the rest of the movie should not have required a very high budget: the same Fulci , moreover, speaks of 600 million ₤3.

And indeed, if one were to give a definition, for example, of the scenographies by Massimo Lentini, the term “ordinary” would perhaps be the most exact. The same applies to the costumes, curated by Laura Gemser. So it can be said that the budget, after all, was not wasted.

As far as we can read, there was no lack of disagreement during the production: John Savage, protagonist chosen because the production wanted a famous main actor, found himself quarreling with Fulci, and Fulci himself later declared to have been, he and the producer Massaccesi , almost about to hit him4. Massaccesi, furthermore, replaced Fulci’s name by a pseudonym, Henry Simon Kittay, in the foreign editions5.

But, along with the quarrels, since this is a movie by Lucio Fulci, there is no lack of quotes, first of all from Duel by Steven Spielberg (I also see, in the scene set in the autogrill, a quote from The Asphalt Jungle by John Huston).

Some themes, and this is another Fulci constant, come back: death, time, the cyclical nature of things and life.

Door Into Silence is a bloodless horror, but with a good dose of tension. It’s a road movie shot on real places, in Louisiana. It’s a dreamlike movie, with music that ultimately gives it a certain, bitter irony6. Perhaps it’s also, as Fulci himself has stated7, a movie ahead on time, a harbinger, in its own way, of “a new orientation in terror and thriller“.

In my opinion it’s a film to be seen, both to close a possible vision of Fulci’s entire filmography, and to spend an hour and a half with a particular movie, with substantially one character and the American roads to surround his obsession.

Full Movie (ITA) from Minerva Pictures channel on YouTube


MacColl, Catriona (pref.), Romagnoli, Michele. L’Occhio Del Testimone. Il Cinema Di Lucio Fulci, II ed., Kappalab, Ferrara, 2015


IMDB – Connections with other movies – (last visit 15/10/2019)

IMDB – Movie poster – (last visit 15/10/2019)

Nocturno – (last visit 15/10/2019)

  1. But the TV movies will be distributed only later in home video.
  2. It would have been Michele Romagnoli to push Fulci to propose the script to Joe D’Amato: see MacColl, Catriona (pref.) And Romagnoli, Michele. L’Occhio Del Testimone, II ed., Kappalab, Ferrara, 2015, pp. 55-56.
  3. See again L’Occhio Del Testimone, p. 56.
  4. See L’Occhio Del Testimone, p. 69.
  5. It was not the first time that Fulci appeared under a pseudonym: it had already happened, as we read on L’Occhio Del Testimone, p. 114, for the distribution in South America of his movies produced by Fabrizio De Angelis. However, it seems that Massaccesi’s choice was due to the lack of success that Fulci’s previous movies had achieved, not exactly a flattering reason.
  6. It seems, however, that some tracks have been recycled from Troll 2 by Claudio Fragasso. I didn’t check, but here’s the source.
  7. Always L’Occhio Del Testimone, p. 62.

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