Achingly romantic and creepy-funny, this funereal fantasy from the director of La Chiesa (1989) is unlike any Italian film in memory. Rupert Everett plays Francesco Dellamorte, a lonely cemetery caretaker who just wants to get out of his small town of Buffalora. His assistant and sole companion, Gnaghi (played by famed French musician Francois Hadji-Lazaro) is an overweight cretin who speaks only in grunts, and the dead people outside are rising from their graves as zombies and trying to have him for breakfast. This situation, coupled with all his other problems, gives Francesco a real complex. His troubles are compounded when he meets a series of mysterious women (all played by the beautiful Anna Falchi) whom he loves before they die tragically. Soavi's film is based on a graphic-novel, Dylan Dog by Tiziano Sclavi, but Soavi's more obvious influences range from Jean Rollin's La Rose de Fer (1973) to Tim Burton's Edward Scissorhands (1990). Barbara Cupisti (of Soavi's Deliria) has a small role, and the film also benefits from Manuel de Sica's memorable score and excellent pacing by editor Franco Fraticelli. This is a film to savor and it will go down as one of the most striking Italian genre efforts of the decade, despite some weak effects work by the normally reliable Sergio Stivaletti.
by Robert Firsching synopsis