• Berberian Sound Studio is the second directorial effort from Peter Strickland.
  • The film follows a British, timid sound editor named Gilderoy (Toby Jones) as he works away from home in Italy on a macabre Giallo horror film.
  • Strickland clearly adores and has autopsied these films- he knows them like the back of his hand. As the mixer- Gilderoy smashes watermelons to substitute for some gruesome murders on screen, users a blender noise as a stand-in for a chainsaw. This is Italian cinema in the 1970s, so this would be a film where the sound is dubbed entirely. The director of the film within the film is named Santini (Antonio Mancino). Santini acknowledges that “half of the film will be made in this room”- and claims “this is not a horror film, this is a Santini film.”

This is a surrealistic and elliptical journey for Gilderoy—the film he is working on slowly has an effect on him.

A reoccurring shot behind Toby Jones head. The red glow of the SILENZIO sign – Strickland builds up a sort of formal rhythm with Gilderoy working on the film, getting the runaround from the film company about his flight receipt, audio storyboarding at his apartment, reading letters from his mother. It is all part of the editing stew as he slowly descends into madness as his physical appearance deteriorates.

  • Strickland is also interested in playing in form- for a section of the film, Strickland restarts the movie with Jones’ dialogue dubbed in Italian.

The film within the film has a masterful opening title sequence

At sublime shot at the 82-minute mark with the red panel lights from the mixing room bouncing off the glass where the new actress is recording.

  • Recommend but not in the top 10 of 2012