After interpreting the ancient text of 1981’s Evil Dead for modern audiences, Fede Alvarez has moved on to adapting another difficult work whose intricacies require careful navigation and blood placement: Dante’s Inferno, the epic 2010 video game that serves as an allegorical exploration of the afterlife, man’s inextricable relationship with the demons he has to smash with his big-ass scythe, and the moral choice facing everyone between forgiveness and just hacking someone to pieces. According to the game box, the classic, metaphorical tale of the soul’s journey toward God—whose salvation awaits every man who can solve His lever-based mini-puzzles—was itself based on The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri, so named for the way it hilariously imagines a story where a guy goes to Hell but just faints a lot, instead of being super buff and getting into wicked fights with monsters.
In adapting Dante’s Inferno to the screen, Alvarez will be tasked with similarly improving upon a work that’s already been pored over for years by scholars who studied the price tag and realized it was slightly cheaper than God Of War, and faithfully translate its imaginative passages from one screen to a bigger screen, likely by adding way more guts. Should he succeed, the Dante’s Inferno movie could at last provide an entry point for younger audiences to the Dante’s Inferno video game, and kindle a love affair thereafter with classic literature-based hack-and-slash.
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