Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Capsule reviews: Santo en el Tesoro de Dracula, The Monster, and The Sex Killer

All of these films are available via amazon for sale.

SANTO EN EL TESORO DE DRACULA: The 1969 Mexican masked wrestler battles with Dracula and a masked criminal in this insane, chaotic entry that blends time travel, the Lugosi Dracula tale and a search for Dracula's treasure in one convoluted flick. It's funnier than heck, though, particularly the time travel sequences, the cheesecake scenes of a Latina lovely in a sheer nighty, and the obligatory wrestling. And what's with that mask, Santo, do you ever take it off to sleep, shower, make love ...?
THE MONSTER: The presence of Lon Chaney Sr. as a mad scientist/doctor who is using patients at a sanitarium the imprison several is reason enough to watch this too-often stagy adaptation of a popular comedy thriller stage play of that era, 1925. Johnny Arthur, a comedian of that era, provides the laughs but Chaney's menace and strong facial emotions dominate the film.
THE SEX KILLER: Viewers will feel like they'll need a strong shower after watching this grimy, 1967 Barry Mahon directed "nudie roughie" filmed in that era just before grindhouses surrended and starting showing triple XXX. "The Sex Killer" would be an R today. It's about a loner who works in a manniquinn factory who progresses from peeping to rape and murder, although only breasts and flimsy nightwear is shown. The film is worth viewing only for the stark, lengthy shots of New York City in the 1960s. In fact, it's almost like a documentary of the city's grimy section of that era. The final scene, which scans the New Yorks business and industrial skyline, is great gonzo cinematography.

-- Doug Gibson

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