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Brazzi plays mad Dr. Frankenstein, Dunn is an evil dwarf and Lugosi (no relation to Bela) is a Neanderthal man. Add a monster named Hulk, and some nude women for sexploitation value. Written by
Arthur Workman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
FRANKENSTEIN'S CASTLE OF FREAKS is a genuine howler of a movie, an Italian "Sexy Horror" thriller made at the tail-end of the Euro Horror explosion and sleazy to a very enjoyable tee. Rossano Brazzi plays "Count Frankenstein", carrying on the family traditions of monster making using spare parts dug up from the local cemetery by his goon squad of misshapen, demented assistants. When the boneyard runs short of choice pickings he is not adversed to using the freshly murdered corpses of various supporting cast members.
The main thing to recommend this movie is it's audacity and utterly bizarre cacophony of weirdness that it hurls at the viewer. Almost nothing in the film is done in good taste, the assault on one's sense of propriety topped off by a scene where a mutated Neanderthal type & the lab midget kidnap a buxom young lass, tie her up, and enjoy the fruits of their labors. The film bombards viewers with a seemingly endless array of nude female bodies undressing, bathing, skinny dipping, and being ravished by the various goons in the gallery.
Little Person performer Michael Dunn -- best known for playing little Alexander on that weird STAR TREK episode with the telekinetic Platonians -- steals the show as the horny, vengeance minded dwarf. But the cast is actually filled with some top ranked Euro Genre talent: Luciano Pigozzi (best known for his work with Antonio Margheriti), frequent Euro Horror monster Xiro Papas, the always mousy Edmund Purdom, sexy Simone Blondell, and most fascinatingly Gladiator/Muscleman Matinée Idol Gordon Mitchell, who probably helped to finance the movie once the market for Spaghetti Westerns dried up.
I mean look, what can you say about a movie titled FRANKENSTEIN'S CASTLE OF FREAKS?? It's smutty, sleazy, non-pornographic monster movie mayhem, with a heavy emphasis on atmosphere & fleshy thrills over any sense of coherency. There's a Frankenstein monster (albeit without the Universal makeup look: Get over it, Frankenstein's monster can look any way someone wants), the sex-crazed dwarf, the Neanderthal (played by one Salvatore Baccaro, billed here as Boris Lugosi but best remembered by fans of Italo Sleaze as MONKEYBOY!! from Luigi Batzella's BEAST IN HEAT), women taking hot sauna baths together, some interesting gore effects, and drippings of Euro Horror atmosphere. The complete lack of morals sets it on a different plane than the Hammer horror films that it apes, but it's all in good fun, the low budget making it seem all the more patently absurd.
The reason why I call it a "howler" is that it's practically impossible to keep a straight face while watching a movie like this. One ends up howling with laughter not so much at how "bad" it is but how absurd the whole concoction seems. You also can't make 'em like this anymore, there is zero political correctness to be found, the attractive young women are all objectified into sex mavens and Count Frankenstein is mean to the little dwarf. If you can suspend your insistence on big-budget entertainment this is actually a sick, riotous little time killer that should make a fantastic party movie, provided of course all of your friends are a little sick.
6/10 for having the nerve to show it to us.
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