Saturday, March 20, 2010
Curse of the Devil (1973, Carlos Aured)
Also known as Return of the Werewolf, Return of Walpurgis and The Black Harvest of Count Dracula, Curse of the Devil is one of 12 films with Spanish horror legend Paul Naschy in the role of the werewolf Waldemar Daninsky. Considered as one of his best, I figured sooner or later I should check out more of Naschy films and thought this would be a good place to start.
Paul Naschy plays Inquisitor Ireneus Daninsky, who orders the death of Countess Bathory because of her ties with Satan. Before she dies, she curses Daninsky and all of his decendants. Many years later, his descendant Waldemar Daninsky (also played by Naschy) transforms into a werewolf after pissing off some gypsies who know about the curse. Waldemar ends up entangled with two sisters who are put in danger when the moon is full.
Curse of the Devil has a lot of good things going for it. Paul Naschy does a great job as the tortured hero/villain. The rest of the cast are all quite good and the women are all beautiful. A nice mix of a classic werewolf story, filled with satanism and the legend of Countess Bathory. The settings and cinematography (especially in the opening scene), are all well done too and there are also some nice gory scenes for those easily bored by historical horror films. Some of the themes are a little silly and there are some slow parts, but overall the film worked well and was quite entertaining.