4.3/10
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10 user 5 critic

I frati rossi (1988)

| Horror
A young woman weds a seemingly charming young man, and moves into his ancient mansion. She quickly learns to hate the old mansion and its inhabitants, while she gets frustrated with her ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Gerardo Amato ...
Robert Gherghi
...
Ramona Icardi
...
Priscilla
Chuck Valenti ...
Ben (as Richard Brown)
...
Lodorisio, the Lord
Mary Maxwell ...
Lucille
Gaetano Russo ...
Riccardo Gherghi (as Ronald Russo)
Ludovico Della Jojo ...
(as Ludovico Dello Jojo)
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Storyline

A young woman weds a seemingly charming young man, and moves into his ancient mansion. She quickly learns to hate the old mansion and its inhabitants, while she gets frustrated with her husband's secrecy on his late night activities and the contents of the dungeon below. As heads begin to roll she discovers about her husband's past and his connection to some cult called the Red Monks. However, wait till he finds about HER past. Written by Parca Mortem <icy_shadow@rocketmail.com>

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The Red Monks  »

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Was released in Germany with the gonzo tagline "Das Meisterwerk von Lucio Fulci" (=The Masterpiece of Lucio Fulci), even though Fulci was just one of the movie's producers and had nothing much to do with the final product. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Insipid potboiler
20 April 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I was tricked into buying THE RED MONKS by the plastering of director Lucio Fulci's name on the front cover (it was only when I got home did I realise the box says "LUCIO FULCI" and then "presents" in tiny letters underneath – yep, he only gets a producer's credit here). I was hoping for a good old-fashioned Italian horror and, failing that, a semi-forgotten oddity along the lines of SWEET HOUSE OF HORRORS or HOUSE OF CLOCKS. Instead what I got was a long-winded and dull outing in which very little actually happens and the story seems to float along endlessly without going anywhere.

The story is straight out of an old black and white haunted house flick of the 1960s: a beautiful young bride moves into her husband's ancestral home before being disturbed by sinister events. These include strange nightmares, her husband's frequent disappearances into the vast cellars beneath the house, the antagonism of the housekeeper and her husband's bizarre refusal to have sex with her. As written, it sounds far more interesting than it actually is, not least because the pacing is so slow and the script devoid of imagination. Horror scenes are left to a couple of nightmarish dreams, in which we see a skeleton with glowing eyes. Oh, and one of the pipe-cleaner-legged spiders from THE BEYOND makes a guest appearance, with hilarious results. The locations, especially the cobwebbed cellars, are great, so it's a shame the makers of this didn't offer a better story to fill them.

There's barely any bloodshed to mention – a couple of cheesy decapitated heads and that's about it – so director Gianni Martucci serves up titillation instead in terms of nudity from stars Wendel and Longo. The cast are wooden – not least lead Gerardo Amato, who's completely terrible in what should be a complex and imposing role – and the only actor who really fits the part is Malisa Longo as the sultry housekeeper. The title of this film alone brought to mind memories of Mickey Hargitay's red-hooded murderer in THE CRIMSON EXECUTIONER but it's a real misnomer as the red monks rarely appear and are almost incidental to the plot.


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