Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Nasch This

Don’t hurt me, but I have something quite shaming to say:
Before last week I had never seen a Paul Naschy film.

Ouch! I should’ve said not the face.
Anyway, it’s true. I can reenact every Freddy Krueger kill and identify each of Toulan’s puppets, but somehow, in 28 5/6 years on this planet, I simply haven’t delved into the weird and wonderful world of Spain’s most memorable genre star. 
That was certainly one reason for jumping on the Vicar of VHS and Duke of DVD’s Paul Naschy November Blogathon. The other being their site, Mad Mad Mad Mad Movies, is a joyous blogging nook of the horror world, oozing with dry wit and affectionate reviews of some of the worst movies ever made. Be sure to head their this month to see what these royal noblemen have brewing!
Until then, let’s get avenging.
Quick Plot: A married couple argues over whether to do some grave robbing. Today, this is what celebrities call ‘irreconcilable differences.’
It’s off to the mausoleum of a murder victim, where our morally questionable pair are soon locked inside with a reanimated corpse. Death happens. Insanely jazzed credits roll. Life is good.

Over in England, the redhead Elvire introduces her friend to her HIndu mystic Krisna, played (in one of three performances) by Sir Naschy. Though Krisna’s brand of self-burning and peacefulness seems to be drawing the British crowds, he and his entourage 

(which includes a gorgeous Catherine Zeta Jones-ish Indian lass...

a mysterious farmer with a comically oversized pitchfork...

and henchman baring an odd resemblance to the killer in Terror Train)

 take leave in Elvire’s homeland right after her father and house servants are brutally slain. 
It doesn’t take too long for Krisna and Elvire to fall in love, he for her crimson hair and blue velour and feathered fashion sense, she for his very own Naschyness. There are complications, of course. A spurned lover. A mangled faced brother who likes to abuse voodoo. The Devil.

You know, the typical roadblocks every new couple meets.
Vengeance of the Zombies is an unusual movie, and I mean that as a compliment. Between brutal dream sequences and bizarre voodoo inspired kills, you never quite know what you’ll get next, nor is it easy to read any of the characters’ motives. It’s a rare treat to be able to say that of any genre film.

High Points
Jumping jazz hands this score was a blast! Tribal drums, smooth jazz, frantic jazz, classical cellos, disco magic, elevator about diversity
Death by soda can. DEATH BY SODA CAN!!!
Low Points
Though I liked Rommy’s portrayal of Elvire (even despite the fact she’s a pesky one-named actress) it’s always a disgruntling sight when I see a female character stand back and worriedly watch her lover be attacked by a villain. Dear, please: there are always things you can throw, even if you have the arm of a girl

Lessons Learned
You know your marriage is in trouble when the only thing that gets your wife hot is robbing a grave
Like any person that loves comfort, Satan is not above lounging in a fluffy bathrobe
Voodoo is a great outlet for those with an interest in arts ‘n crafts
The Winning Line
“It was there my brother raped her, causing her death. It was supposedly an accident.”
Why, please why, is there no flashback to an accidental rape/manslaughter???
Stray Observation
Are morticians all closeted members of Overeaters Anonymous? I’ve lost count of how many movies set in a morgue involve the supposed professional chomping down on a sandwich a mere foot and half away from the recently deceased

I thoroughly enjoyed Vengeance of the Zombies for its unique visual and audio style. Though the final act dragged a little, it’s an oddly fascinating little movie that combines a surprisingly complex story with some rather elegant gore. Zombie fans looking for some typical Romero shamblers should be warned that the titular monsters here are more old school, but don’t let that deter a rental. It’s something fresh, something colorful, and bazoinks was that score groovy.

Now get thee to Mad Mad Mad Mad Movies for more Nasclogging!


  1. Don't feel bad Emily. I have yet to see one either.

  2. "Jenn" over at "The Cavalcade Of Perversions" is crazy about this geezer.

  3. Yay Heather! We are co-slackers!

    Welcome Jimmie! And thanks for pointing me over to the Cavalcade. Fun little place!