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The devil, following in the footsteps of Christ, decides to become flesh and take a stroll around Earth to see how humans have progressed, and have a little fun creating havoc and mayhem in the process.
A woman searches for her missing lover, a psychiatrist who has suddenly vanished for no apparent reason. She ends up at a villa populated by a group of eccentric individuals. A string of murders commence immediately.
The plot of this Spanish giallo is fairly straightforward and doesn't require much elaboration: it involves a modern-day killer murdering women in the manner of Jack the Ripper. Along the way, the plot is embellished with a succession of investigating detectives, peripheral characters, hidden identities, red herrings and suspects. To be honest, the plotting is pretty crude, and it's fairly easy to guess the identity of the killer from the outset; there's no reason for their character to be in the film other than for them to be the killer! On the whole, this is a vehicle for Spanish horror icon Paul Naschy.
Although his character of Peter Dockerman isn't even integral to the main storyline, he occupies much of the screen playing a bereaved cripple whom the police believe to be the murderer. Naschy is impossible to dislike; he's larger than life here, sporting a pronounced limp, brawling in bars, stabbing would-be killers and even taking a bullet with no ill effect, and much of the film's entertainment value comes from his presence. The supporting cast are effective, too, particularly Renzo Marignano as the cop hot on Naschy's heels.
What more is there to say? The series of murders occupies much of the narrative. I saw the 'clothed' version, which features a succession of beautiful women parading in their underwear before being knifed via some dodgy effects by the unknown killer. I enjoyed watching another Spanish production trying to convince us that it's set in London, with all the usual landmarks popping up for effect. The music is atmospheric, the action scenes well portrayed, and the twist ending well handled. It's a typical example of the giallo, marked only by its rareness.
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