After lots of hype, director Luca Guadagnino’s highly anticipated remake of Dario Argento’s 1977 classic Suspiria is now in theaters. Unfortunately, that doesn’t necessarily mean everyone reading this can see it, as the numbers of theaters it’s playing in is sadly limited.
Still, those who’ve had the chance to check out the new Suspiria were treated to quite the mesmerizing and artistic effort, and something that’s less a remake of Argento’s movie and more a completely different beast that just happens to use his premise as a foundation.
Many who’ve seen Suspiria were left stunned by a late-game twist involving lead character Susie Bannion, played by Dakota Johnson. Before she’s about to sacrificed to save a dying Helena Markos, Susie is revealed to in fact be the exalted Mother Suspiriorum herself.
The immensely powerful witch then destroys anyone who aligned with Markos, a pretender to her throne. However, was Susie Mother Suspiriorum all along, or was she changed at some point during the film? Collider recently asked Johnson, and she left things pretty vague.
That’s a great question. My perspective on that is I did make an effort to sort of leave that open for interpretation. So Susie’s evolution is very internal. It’s deeply internal, but the thing that draws her to Berlin to Madame Blanc is also deeply internal. There are so many threads of possibilities. She comes from a Mennonite family, which Mennonites came from Germany. She has sort of like denounced the church, her mother and her father. She does not … she just fundamentally does not accept the life that she’s been given, which a long time ago if you did that, you were a witch. If you were at all independent, if you thought independently, if you felt independently from your father or the church, you were a witch.
So there’s all these kind of like hints that Susie’s different but she doesn’t know. She just feels this pull, this magnet, this thing, to dance and she has to go to Berlin. She has to be with Madame Blanc. It’s like just she was born in the wrong place. I think that’s how she makes sense of it, like, “I just don’t belong here.”
Then I believe once she understands what is happening there is a very very subtle moment where I think she realizes what she’s meant to do. I want the audience to figure out when that is.
While Johnson’s comments admittedly don’t clear much up, she does seem to be hinting at Susie at least not knowing her ultimate destiny at the beginning of the film, whether or not she already knew there was something special about her.
Now, the task for those who enjoyed Suspiria (2018) is to figure out what subtle moment Johnson is referring to in which Susie has her “eureka” moment about what she’s meant to do at the academy, which is ultimately of course to explode lots of heads in gory fashion.