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Cult Spanish horror actor Paul Naschy not only stars in Panic Beatshe wrote and directed it too; I guess that puts the majority of the blame for this dreadful mess squarely on his massive hairy shoulders.
Taking the basic premise of French classic Les Diaboliques for the first half of his storysomeone plots to kill their spouse by scaring them to deathand then veering wildly off in to all manner of convoluted goings on, until the final supernatural ending, Naschy delivers a muddled effort that bores more than it scares.
The film starts rather promisingly with a nifty pre-credit sequence that sees a nekkid chick running for her life from an evil knight on horseback. Falling to the ground in terror, she is beaten to death by the knightweapon of choice: a nasty looking flail with spiked metal balls.
The rest of the film is set in the present day, and proves to be pretty uninspiring stuff, until about 20 minutes from the end, when viewers are treated to smattering of cheesy OTT gore. At least Naschy has the decency to feature a couple of Euro-babes in the altogether to keep us from completely glazing over; Paquita Ondiviela (¡Ay, caramba!) is particularly winsome as the wayward niece of Naschy's housekeeper.
Panic Beats is a film I can see appealing only to die-hard Euro-horror completists; anyone else will have a hard time seeing this one through to the end.
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