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Dagon at Chazen Museum Of Art

October 23, 2022 @ 2:00 pm - 3:45 pm

Uxía (Macarena Gómez), dressed in a gold ceremonial outfit, brandishes a gold dagger shaped like a spine.

Uxía (Macarena Gómez), dressed in a gold ceremonial outfit, brandishes a gold dagger shaped like a spine.


From Ian Adcock’s feature on UW Cinematheque’s October Sunday series at the Chazen Museum Of Art

Combining two short stories by H.P. Lovecraft, Dagon (2001) is an atmospheric, fast-paced piece of gothic horror. After a boating accident off the coast of Spain, wealthy tech geek Paul Marsh (Ezra Godden) and his girlfriend Bárbara (Raquel Meroño) find themselves stranded in a gloomy, remote fishing village. They quickly discover the town is populated by half-human fish-people who worship the ancient pagan god Dagon and make masks out of outsiders’ skin. Racing through the rain-soaked streets, Paul tries to rescue Barbara from being sacrificed to Dagon while fending off murderous villagers and the advances of tentacled temptress Uxía (Macarena Gómez).

Though slightly marred by the lead actors’ woodenness and some very dated CGI effects, Dagon is one of Gordon’s most unsettling works. The Spanish coast is a surprisingly good substitute for Lovecraft’s gloomy New England setting, making Dagon feel more faithful to the writer’s vision than Gordon’s other adaptations. By using all handheld cameras and purposely not subtitling the Spanish cast’s dialogue, Gordon immerses the viewer into Paul’s panicked point of view, making the plot’s many twists and turns all the more surprising. As Gordon’s final horror film, Dagon is an underappreciated entry in his filmography.


October 23, 2022
2:00 pm - 3:45 pm
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Chazen Museum Of Art
800 University Ave
Madison, WI 53706 United States
+ Google Map
(608) 263-2246

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