A priest comes to a small town to help get rid of a monster whose blood coagulates very fast. This creates problems as the monster is very hard to kill and then decides to go on a killing spree of its own.
Grief-struck after the death of his wife, a young man attempts to keep her with him forever - by gutting her, stuffing her and replacing her eyes with glass eyes, turning her into a doll. But his bouts of insanity are just beginning.
Tourists take a boat to a remote island, where they find that most of the people have disappeared, and something is stalking them. They find a hidden room in the big mansion on a hill, and an ancient diary, which gives them clues to the source of the terror.Written by
Ed Sutton <firstname.lastname@example.org>
There's evil on this island. An evil that won't let us get away. An evil that sends out an inhuman, diabolic power. I sense its vibrations now. The vibrations are an intense horror. It will destroy us! The very same way it did all the others!
Shut up, Carol!
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The American region 0 version (aka "The Grim Reaper") replaces the original music with the soundtrack used in Kingdom of the Spiders. In addition to that, two scenes of extreme gore were cut; the first is where the maniac pulls out and eats a woman's unborn baby. The other is the final scene which after the maniac is stabbed by a pickaxe in the abdomen, he pulls out and starts to eat his own entrails in a futile attempt to keep them inside him which completely alters the ending of the film. This version in total appears to be around 10 mins shorter than the full 91 minute Italian version, though some of the edits are also dialogue scenes. The U.S Special Edition on the Media Blasters/Shriek Show label is the original version and fully uncut. See more »
I originally watched this on SKY a few years back and I enjoyed it then as I did this time around.
That's right I said I enjoyed it and judging by low scores on IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes, I think I'm in the minority.
The worst thing about this film is the soundtrack. To say it's dreadful would be doing an injustice to the term understatement. There are a couple of scenes where the music sets the mood perfectly... but it is only a couple. The rest of the time the audience is assailed with a manic Wurlitzer pianist - I actually had a vision of an old time theatre (back in the silent movie days) and a man, half-crossed between The Phantom Of The Opera and The Joker, going insane of the ebony and ivories... all it lacked was a maniacal laugh.
Apart from that what the writers Joe D'Amato (Director) and George Eastman (Actor) give the audience is a new take on both the Cannibal and Zombie legends, by giving you Nikos Karamanlis, a man turned beast who is something other than alive and with a penchant for human flesh. He acquired this evil and unnatural taste after he and his family were shipwrecked... when you're miles from anywhere and starving you have to eat.
This is so much better than his follow on movie Absurd, which also fell foul of the dreaded Video Nasty title and banning.
The acting is above average. Tisa Farrow (Mia Farrow's sister) who gave a well-disposed portrayal of Julie, a student on her way to a Greek island and summer job. Along with Saverio Vallone who gives an affable portrayal of Andy, the unheralded leader of the group, these two hold the film together. Even the mostly silent Eastman as The Beast does a decent job of being menacing and actually uses his size and facial features to add power and unease (wish he'd done the same in Absurd)
For the time the effects are more than passable, the only let down is Eastman's "Beast" face as it looks like somebody has spilt cold porridge over him. Most of the dead look nasty enough, with decaying skin and maggots writhing in eye sockets. The scene with the rats would have looked more realistic had they not covered a skeleton in spam... they could have added more blood to disguise the fact - go Herschell-Lewis on them.
One thing that did impress me is most of the scenes are shot in daylight and D'Amato still builds a sense of tension and unease. The scene where Arnold is looking for his pregnant wife Maggie and stumbles into a clearing by a ruinated abbey sent a shiver down my spine. You can actually feel something watching him.
There is more to this film than I originally thought and I would recommend it to all horror fans who haven't seen it yet. And I will be watching this again in the future.
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