The Awful Dr. Orlof (1962) - News Poster


Jess Franco’s The Diabolical Dr. Z – The Blu Review

Review by Roger Carpenter

Few filmmakers are as polarizing as Spanish director Jesus Franco. Some hail him as a trash film king while others denigrate him as a complete hack. His overuse of the zoom lens causes some viewers to twitch while others apologize for his sometimes convoluted plots by describing them as dream-like and insisting his films are multi-layered and filled with meaning. Regardless of which side of the fence you may be on with regards to Jess Franco, most viewers praise his early genre works as artistic, gothic classics of European horror.

Long before he wallowed in softcore lesbian adventures, cheap knockoffs of genre hits, and hardcore pornography, Franco created a series of black-and-white gothic chillers which were well-received upon release, with titles such as The Awful Dr. Orlof, The Sadistic Baron Von Klaus, and Kino Lorber’s latest Franco release, The Diabolical Dr. Z.

Dr. Zimmer, an acolyte of the discredited Dr.
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Eyes Without a Face (Bfi Import)

Sometimes a movie is simply too good for just one special edition… Savant reached out to nab a British Region B import of Georges Franju’s horror masterpiece, to sample its enticing extras. And this also gives me the chance to ramble on with more thoughts about this 1959 show that inspired a score of copycats.

Eyes Without a Face (Bfi — U.K.)

Region B Blu-ray + Pal DVD


1959 / B&W / 1:66 widescreen / 90 min. / The Horror Chamber of

Dr. Faustus, House of Dr. Rasanoff, Occhi senza volto / Street Date August 24, 2015 / presently £10.99

Starring: Pierre Brasseur, Edith Scob, Alida Valli, Francois Guérin,

Béatrice Altariba, Juliette Mayniel

Cinematography: Eugen Schüfftan

Production Designer: Auguste Capelier

Special Effects: Charles-Henri Assola

Film Editor: Gilbert Natot

Original Music: Maurice Jarre

Written by Pierre Boileau, Thomas Narcejac, Pierre Gascar, Claude Sautet from a novel by Jean Redon

Produced by Jules Borkon

Directed by Georges Franju

Savant has reviewed Eyes Without a Face twice,
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"Get Mean" Starring Tony Anthony Gets First North American Release Through Blue Underground Video

  • CinemaRetro
"Get Mean" (1975), the most obscure and final entry in the series of "Stranger" Westerns starring Tony Anthony is getting a long-awaited release in North America thanks to the new deluxe edition Blu-ray that is jam-packed with extras including an insightful collector's booklet written by Cinema Retro columnist Howard Hughes.

Here are the details from the official press release:

The Stranger’s Thrilling Final Adventure!

When an American cowboy stumbles upon a gypsy family in a wind-swept ghost town, they offer him a fortune to escort a princess back to her home in Spain. But this silent Stranger finds himself in over his head (and strung up by his feet) when he gets caught in the middle of an epic battle involving Vikings, the Moors, brutal barbarians, evil spirits, a raging bull, and a diabolical Shakespeare-quoting hunchback. Tired of their never-ending attempts to kill him, the cowboy arms himself to the teeth with guns,
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Ho Ho Horrors - The Favorite Christmas Movies of Roger Corman, Mick Garris, Neil Gaiman, and more!

  • FEARnet
Ho Ho Horrors - The Favorite Christmas Movies of Roger Corman, Mick Garris, Neil Gaiman, and more!
Christmas is a time for feel-good movies. It’s a Wonderful Life, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and the usual Hallmark Hall of Fame drivel that hits the airwaves every December. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the mainstream Christmas classics as much as the next guy. But at night, when my family is all snug in their beds, that’s when I drag out my sick and twisted Christmas collection…

Black Christmas, Christmas Evil, Silent Night Deadly Night, Don’t Open Till Christmas, those are the films I like to cuddle up to with a spiked eggnog. What is my favorite? That’s a difficult question. I love them all for different reasons, but if I had to pick one, I would have to pick a recent import from Finland called Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale. A modern mashup of The Thing and the Krampus mythology, it is
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The Awful Dr. Orlof (1962) (Blu-ray Review)

The Awful Dr. Orlof (1962) (Blu-ray Review) Directed By: Jess Franco Starring: Howard Vernon, Diana Lorys, Conrado San Martin Rated: Ur/Region A/1:66/1080p/Number of Discs 1 Available from Redemption When beautiful music hall entertainers begin to disappear under mysterious circumstances, Inspector Tanner is summoned to investigate. His resourceful fiancee decides to help him by going undercover as a cabaret singer, and succeeds all too well, at…
See full article at Horrorbid »

Three Jess Franco Films Get the Deluxe Blu-ray Treatment

  • FEARnet
Three Jess Franco Films Get the Deluxe Blu-ray Treatment
Revered horror/exploitation auteur Jess Franco left us last month (you can read our tribute to him here), but his legacy is being preserved thanks to some excellent video releases of his many genre creations – the latest being new Blu-rays of three Franco classics via Kino Lorber and Redemption Films: The Awful Dr. Orlof, A Virgin Among the Living Dead and Nightmares Come at Night will be released in deluxe editions this August, all mastered from archive materials from Eurociné Paris. The deluxe edition of Franco's 1962 landmark The Awful Dr. Orlof is newly mastered in HD, taken from the original uncut French-language version. It will also feature one of the last videotaped interviews with the director, a new commentary track by Tim Lucas (founder/editor of magazine Video Watchdog), as well as newly-filmed remembrances by Franco's friends and collaborators. The new disc of 1970's Nightmares Come at Night, starring the lovely Soledad Miranda,
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The Forgotten: Tarzan Versus Ibm

  • MUBI
The late Jesús Franco was, we are told, once named by the Vatican as being, along with Luis Buñuel, "the most dangerous filmmaker in the world." There's little evidence of that in early spy caper Cartes sur table (Cards on the Table, a.k.a. Attack of the Robots, 1966), but there is, by pleasing coincidence, a Buñuel connection or two. Franco's co-writer on this and other early productions was none other than the great Jean-Claude Carrière, the collaborator's collaborator, who worked with Buñuel on all his later French movies (as well as ghosting Don Luis's autobiography My Last Breath). The movie also features regular Buñuel star Fernando Rey among its seamy rogue's gallery of villains.

The movie stars craggy Yank abroad Eddie Constantine as a former Interpol agent lured back for one last job, but betrayed by his bosses who see him as a pawn in the game. Although the movie is light,
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Jesús Franco obituary

Prolific Spanish film-maker who specialised in psychedelic gothic horror – often laced with sex and violence

According to the Internet Movie Database, the Spanish film-maker Jesús Franco, who has died aged 82, directed 199 films, from El árbol de España in 1957 to Al Pereira vs the Alligator Ladies in 2012, a record few can match in the era of talking pictures. Given that many Franco films exist in three or four variant versions, sometimes so radically different that alternative cuts qualify as separate movies, his overall tally might be considerably higher.

Born Jesús Franco Manera, he was most often credited – at least on international release prints – as Jess Frank or Jess Franco, though he used a host of pseudonyms, writing scripts as David Khune, composing music as Pablo Villa and co-directing pornographic films (with his long-term muse Lina Romay) as Rosa Almirall. He was a true man of the cinema, whose CV ranged from
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Jess Franco, Spanish Director Of Cult Film Favorites, Dead At Age 82

  • CinemaRetro

Spanish film director Jess "Jesus"  Franco has died at age 82 in Malaga, Spain. The prolific pioneer of Spanish horror and fantasy cult films capitalized on a relaxation of censorship laws to create a body of films that have withstood the test of time and still maintain loyal followings today. Among them: Succubus, Vampyros Lesbos, 99 Women, The Awful Dr. Orlof, Necronomicon and the 1969 Count Dracula starring Hammer film favorite Christopher Lee.  He also served as second unit director on Orson Welles' Chimes at Midnight. A respected talent who specialized in exploitation films, Franco also occasionally acted, wrote screenplays and composed music for his own films as well as those of other artists. In all, Franco was involved in the production of over 200 films.

Click here to read Variety obituary

Click here to view kinky trailer for Vampyros Lesbos
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Jesús Franco: creator of erotic horrors who had a unique cinematic vision

Jess Franco, who has died aged 82, was a dedicated exponent of weird sex who leaves a vast and complex body of work

When the grand dames and gentlemen at Spain's 2009 Goya Film Awards sat drinking their champagne, I doubt many of them expected to see, before the night was through, a naked man and woman tied up and whipped in a circle of knives, two scimitar-wielding lesbians duking it out on a hilltop, a sadomasochistic orgy in a brothel or a coven of elderly witches massaging their nipples with a crucifix. Such, though, was the explosion of licentiousness in a montage of images from the career of Spanish filmmaker Jesús Franco Manera, aka Jess Franco, who received that night a lifetime achievement award.

Franco died in Málaga this week at the age of 82, but he leaves behind a vast and complex body of work – more than 180 movies in 54 years. Casual
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Jesus Franco dies: Spanish director passes away at age 82

  • Pop2it
Jesus Franco, the Spanish director best known for his work on post-1970s horror films like "The Mansion of the Living Dead" and "Vampyros Lesbos," has died in Malaga of heart complications. He was 82.

During the course of his career, Franco directed close to 200 films. He worked in the Spanish film industry since the mid-1950s and dabbled in all manners of movie creation, including directing, acting, composing, producing, writing, editing and cinematography.

Franco's first big success was the 1962 film "Gritos en la Noche," released in the United States as "The Awful Dr. Orlof." He became known for the way he mixed horror and eroticism in his films, and became a cult favorite. In the 1970s and 1980s, Franco transitioned to directing hardcore porn, but then return to horror in the late 1980s with "Faceless." His wife and collaborator Lina Romay, who starred in many of his porn films, passed
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Cult Filmmaker Jess Franco Dies at 82

Cult Filmmaker Jess Franco Dies at 82
Jess Franco, the prolific Spanish filmmaker who became renowned for his low-budget cult films, died in Malaga, Spain, of heart complications. He was 82.

Franco’s feature pic debut came in 1959 with “We Are 18 Years Old,” but the helmer found more mainstream success with 1962′s “The Awful Dr. Orlof,” which received wide distribution Stateside and in Blighty. He is best known for his contributions to the cinema fantastique genre, which veered away from the mainstream and employed supernatural phenomena in otherwise realistic narratives. Notable credits include “Necronomicon,” (1967), “Count Dracula” (1969), “Vampyros Lesbos” (1970), “Dracula vs. Frankenstein” (1971), and “Oasis of the Zombies” (1983).

The auteur steered the 1960s Spanish horror boom, and even in the face of fascist censorship, placed sex, blood and gore at the front and center of his motion pics.

Born Jesus Franco on May 12, 1930, in Madrid, Spain, the would-be cineaste got his start composing music at age six and followed that
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Jess Franco has Passed

While very few details are available at the moment, international outlets are reporting that Spanish director Jess Franco passed away earlier today. According to El Pais, Franco’s death was due to a stroke and the announcement was made this morning by Kike Mesa, the director of a 2007 documentary on Jess Franco’s life.

Jesús Franco Manera, better known as “Jess” Franco, was born on May 12, 1930 in Madrid, Spain. He directed nearly 200 films over the years and is probably best known for his horror films in the 1960′s and 1970′s, including Count Dracula and The Bloody Judge with Christopher Lee, Vampyros Lesbos, The Awful Dr. Orloff, Oasis of the Zombies (in 1983), and many more.

Our thoughts are with Jess Franco’s friends and family. As mentioned above, this information is all coming from secondary sources, so we’ll be looking for an official statement from his family, and will update
See full article at DailyDead »

Wamg Tribute: Director Jess Franco – 1930-2013

Sad news from Spain. Legendary director Jesús Franco Manera, aka Jess Franco, aka Clifford Brown and a couple dozen more pseudonyms, often took from the names of the American jazz musicians he so admired, has died at the age of 82. Franco suffered a stroke last week from which he couldn’t recover.

His Erotic Rites Of Frankenstein featured a shrieking, silver-skinned Frankenstein’s monster relentlessly whipping a man and a woman tied together over a bed of spikes. It was but one of countless sublime images from the output of the most prolific Exploitation director of all-time (yes, that includes Corman). With a repertoire of over 200 titles, Franco enriched the world of Eurohorror/Exploitation by writing, directing, and scoring a vast variety of films, including masterpieces such as Female Vampire, Count Dracula, Faceless, Night Of The Bloody Judge, Eugenie De Sade, and Venus In Furs, an epic amount of art,
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R.I.P. Director Jess Franco

  • FEARnet
R.I.P. Director Jess Franco
Euro-cult great Jess Franco has passed away at the age of 82 after producing nearly 200 films. A unique filmmaker, Franco’s work fits in a category all its own, combining art, the erotic, and the macabre into titles like Lorna the Exorcist, The Awful Dr. Orloff, Dracula vs Frankenstein, and of course, the eponymous Vampyros Lesbos.

While Franco isn’t to everyone’s taste, he certainly stretched the definition of horror cinema and elevated stunner Soledad Miranda to icon status. Get a crash course on Franco’s films here from FEARnet’s Alison Nastasi and watch a (Nsfw) clip from Vampyros Lesbos below.

Vampyros Lesbos Trailer
See full article at FEARnet »

Jesus Franco 1930-2013

Jesus Franco 1930-2013
Jesus "Jess" Franco, the Spanish maverick who wrote, photographed and directed more than 200 films in a career spanning 60 years, has died aged 82. Keeping active in his ninth decade, he was still directing, most recently shooting the typically gonzo Al Pereira Vs. The Alligator Women.Franco worked tirelessly in the 1950s as a writer, assistant director, director, producer, and even composer - he was a passionate musician all his life - but arguably "arrived" in 1962 with The Awful Dr. Orloff. Concerned with the potential reaction of the Spanish censors, he prepared two versions of the flesh-grafting mad-scientist classic: one with nudity and one without. It was a policy he'd continue throughout his career, although "soft" and "hard" would take on different connotations later.He's perhaps best known in the UK for his several collaborations with Christopher Lee: a curious Count Dracula (1969) that Lee starred in away from Hammer; The Bloody Judge
See full article at EmpireOnline »

Iconic Spanish Horror Director Jesús Franco Dies

Jesús "Jess" Franco - director of nearly 200 films, father of the 1960s Spanish horror boom and father of several generations of filmmakers - has died in Malaga of heart complications, at the age of 82.I don't think you could find a post-1970 horror filmmaker who doesn't know Franco's work or hasn't been influenced by him. From The Awful Dr. Orloff and Vampyros Lesbos to The Mansion of the Living Dead, his work was outrageous, bloody, sexy, gory, creepy, and crossed just about every line imaginable - some that even today's horror filmmakers wouldn't dare put a toe over. Making films in Spain in the 1960s wasn't easy. Censorship rules imposed by the fascist government meant that horror films were rare. But some changes to policy (made...

[Read the whole post on]
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

Rest in Peace: Jess "Jesus" Franco

Some truly sad news out of Spain this morning as the horror genre mourns the passing of one of its most prolific filmmakers: Jess "Jesus" Franco.

As reported by El Pais, the word broke today, where Kike Mesa, director of the 2007 documentary Jess Franco: Way of Life, announced Franco's passing early this morning at the age of 82.

Franco's output was simply staggering, having helmed nearly 200 films ranging from shorts to features (and many uncredited works as well). He is perhaps most known for the 1971 erotic vampire opus Vampyros Lesbos (1971), which focused on a vampire's efforts to seduce a young office worker into the world of undead and erotic delights. More of Franco's most impressive works are The Awful Dr. Orloff (1962), The Blood of Fu Manchu (1968), Exorcism (1975), Bloody Moon (1981) and Faceless (1988).

Mr. Franco was never perhaps as well-regarded as he should've been among his peers. His films were often derided
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Paula-Paula – DVD Review

The Film:

At the ripe old age of 80, Jess Franco isn’t collecting dust. He’s still making movies, as evident in this 2010 experimental “nudie-cutie” Paula-Paula, which has been given a wider release thanks to a newly founded Intervision Pictures Corp. Running a mere 66 minutes, the film’s been dubbed an “audiovisual experience”. Hardcore Franco fans will collect every one of his films on DVD, from the great (like The Awful Dr. Orloff) to the atrocious (Oasis of the Zombies). Where does Paula-Paula fall?

Somewhere in between.

Within these 66 minutes of its running time, there’s a minute plot, which has a night club entertainer institutionalized for a murder of another stripper, but Franco uses this plot line ambiguously. Paula-Paula is more of a digital experiment, something that is echoed in the disc’s extras, but it does feature some typical Franco elements. Like his sex films, there’s plenty of long,
See full article at Killer Films »

The Sinister Eyes of Dr. Orloff (1973) – DVD Review

The Film:

With over 200 films to his resume, Jess Franco certainly has enough films to devise a few best of’s and worst of’s. But one title most Franco fans haven’t seen to place on either list is 1973′s The Sinister Eyes of Dr. Orloff. Newly founded Intervision Pictures Corp. has issued this rare Spanish film for its first U.S. DVD release, which is an event amongst itself, really, and now fans can see this “lost” Franco film. Where does it stand? In the middle.

To me, Franco works best within the sexploitation genre. He just has a pornographic eye that makes his erotic/sexploitation films feel more sexual than most. But it’s when he dabbles in other genres that sometimes he loses himself in the worst ways as Cannibals is any example. But his Dr. Orloff series remains one of the most loved amongst fans,
See full article at Killer Films »
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