Abstract: Italian horror found footage Road to L. – Il mistero di Lovecraft (2005) and mockumentary H.P. Lovecraft – Ipotesi di un viaggio in Italia (2004) revolve around the fictional discovery of a letter by the supernatural writer, documenting a putative journey to Italy. The films envisage the conception of the HPL mythos‘ stories as inspired by the writer’s imagined encounters with the gloomy geography, folklore, and cryptic creatures from the Italian river Po delta. Ipotesi is a mockumentary focusing on the fabricated manuscript. The separate Road to L. is presented as Ipotesi’s Blair Witch-inspired “backstage”, revolving around a found VHS and documenting a film crew’s Italian journey on the tracks of HPL. The study discusses horror found footage as a sub-set of risemantisation practices characterised by features, such the diegetic camera and a make-believe register, that aim to bridge over regionalist landscape and “folklore” representations and global horror tropes, depicting the Po Delta region as resonating with the accursed geographies of Lovecraftian literature. The films represent examples of how make-believe found footage and mocku-horror formulas have been used by productions to repurpose regional themes, align with globally popular canons, and attract national and international audiences.

Full reference & Paper:

Carbone, M.B. (2022), ‘Popularising the “folkloric”: Innsmouth and the Italian Polesine in mocku-/found horror films H. P. Lovecraft and Road to L.’, Imago. Studi di cinema e media, n. 24, Edited by G. Ravesi & R. Catanese, pp. 117-137.