After being lost for over four decades, the infamous haunted movie from English painter David Fleas, Opera Mortem, has been discovered, as well as remastered and restored in 2K with the expectation that it will be released on home video this year. Today, Crypt Teaze has been provided with brand new artwork created by Yersinia Pestis for the aforementioned release!
I'm still digging up more information about this obscure film as of writing this, but here's what I've learned so far.
Shot over a span of 10 years on Super-8mm and VHS, the film was screened only one time in the 1973 at the Nottingham’s Odeon Film Theatre, supposedly resulting in an unpleasant and lethal riot. After the premiere, the film vanished and Fleas reportedly passed away sometime in the '70s.
Opera Mortem was thought to be long lost up until a few years back, when it was discovered in an old case of random films at a market by Italian collector Giovanni Mele. Describing the film as "weird, trippy, filled with graphic blood, sex, and black magical ritualistic symbols," Giovanni desired to know more about the film so tracked down the son of David Fleas, who seemed very reluctant to speak about his late father and this film. Mele ended up acquiring the rights to Opera Mortem and began his journey to save the film and find out more about it's maker.
The film is said to be extremely graphic and obscene, including sexual acts and loads of gore. We've also learned that the team behind the restoration had contacted an expert to decipher some symbols used within the film, with the expert explaining that it "is a kind of metaphorical transposition of a black magic ritual." Creepy!
Even weirder, we've hear that one of the conditions for the film’s restoration is that Fleas’ son would like privacy and doesn’t want too much revealed about his family or the full story. Although, this could just mean he simply doesn't want himself or his family associated with such a controversial film. However, we do know some interviews are being compiled for its release.
It seems like there's a fascinating, somewhat eerie story lurking here that we look forward learning eve more about once Opera Mortem is unleashed. With that said, judging by the trailer, this is going to be a intense experimental experience, somewhat along the lines of E. Elias Merhige's Begotten and Nico Bruinsma and Rozz Williams' PIG. Stay tuned for an official release announcement.
Check out the exclusive artwork below, along with a NSFW trailer and some stills from the restoration.
Be sure to follow the Opera Mortem Facebook page for more updates!