Euro | Varied Celluloid

Dracula A.D. 1972

Posted by Josh Samford On October - 10 - 2013

Dracula A.D. 1972 (1972)
Director: Alan Gibson
Writers: Don Houghton
Starring: Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Christopher Neame, Caroline Munro and Stephanie Beacham

The Plot: Dracula A.D. 1972 begins the same way that one expects a Hammer vampire movie to end, with a grand battle between Van Helsing (Peter Cushing) and Count Dracula (Christopher Lee). As the two wage war whilst riding through the wilderness in a carriage, it derails and ultimately leads to both of their deaths. Once Dracula dies, via a broken spoke from a wheel that is jammed straight through his heart, one of his followers comes along and secretly scoops up his ashes. He then sneakily buries Dracula’s ashes only a few feet away from Van Helsing’s grave. We then skip forward one hundred years to wild and vibrant 1972 Britain. Here we meet a gang of friends comprised of social misfits. They are continually crashing parties, having fun, and generally living the rock & roll lifestyle. Within this group we meet the relative newcomer Johnny Alucard (Christopher Neame) who bares a shocking resemblance to the previous follower of Dracula who buried the great vampire’s ashes next to Van Helsing’s grave. Also within this group is Jessica Van Helsing (Stephanie Beacham), the great-granddaughter of the original Van Helsing. Her father, Lorrimer Van Helsing (also played by Peter Cushing), has continued on with the family legacy and is now one of the world’s most formal leaders within the study of occult activities. As one might derive, Johnny Alucard hasn’t joined Jessica Van Helsing’s group of friends for no reason in particular. He has some shady goals in mind, and after hosting a black mass near the grave of Dracula, Britain will once again be haunted by a Vampire plague.

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Bay of Blood

Posted by Josh Samford On October - 9 - 2013

Bay of Blood (1971)
Director: Mario Bava
Writers: Mario Bava, Giuseppe Zaccariello, Filippo Ottoni, Sergio Canevari, Dardano Sacchetti, and Franco Barberi
Starring: Claudine Auger, Luigi Pistilli, Laura Betti, and Claudio Camaso

The Plot: Our film begins, as all great stories do, with an elderly woman being strangled with a noose by her husband. Although this may seem cliche, A Bay of Blood isn’t afraid to switch things up! So, we then watch as the deceased woman’s husband is killed by a faceless assailant immediately after he finishes the job. This new killer then drags the murdering son, Fillipo, out to the bay that their home sits upon, leaving the police to find a forged suicide note that tries to explain the elderly woman’s death. Meanwhile, Fillipo’s body is not found during the investigation. Our film then skips forward in time and we meet four young teens who are hoping to spend their weekend partying by the bay, unfortunately they are instead hunted down and murdered one by one. In a very violent sequence of events that are not foreshadowed in great detail, the movie dispatches all four of the teens as they become part of the bodycount building up around this bay. We then meet real estate agent Frank and his wife Laura who are interested in some property by the bay, and as the film unfurls, through them we will witness why all of this undue carnage has been taking place.

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Vampire Lovers, The

Posted by Josh Samford On April - 9 - 2013

The Vampire Lovers (1970)
Director: Roy Ward Baker
Writers: Harry Fine, Tudor Gates, and Michael Style
Starring: Ingrid Pitt, George Cole, Kate O’Mara, and Peter Cushing

The Plot: The Vampire Lovers tells the slightly episodic story of a powerful female vampire (Ingrid Pitt) who wanders into the homes of affluent families along the Styria countryside. We are first introduced to this stunning young woman when she assumes the name Marcilla and moves into the home of General von Spielsdorf (played by genre great Peter Cushing). Unknown to those surrounding her, Marcilla is sneaking away during most nights and is siphening the life away from the General’s daughter. Although Spielsdorf does eventually try to get his daughter some help, he proves to be too late and Marcilla kills the girl before vanishing into the night. We quickly catch back up with Marcilla and find that she has assumed a new identity, that of a young woman named Carmilla. After manipulating the destruction of her carriage, Carmilla presses her way into the Morton household. Once again, this is an affluent family that has another young daughter named Emma (played by Madeline Smith) who begins to show the same symptoms that afflicted the Spielsdorf girl. Mr. Morton is a bit more proactive, however, and starts searching for anyone who can help him discover what plague is causing his daughter’s illness. Will he be able to stop Carmilla before it is too late?

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Cold Prey II

Posted by Josh Samford On March - 26 - 2013

Cold Prey II (2008)
Director: Mats Stenberg
Writers: Thomas Moldestad, Roar Uthaug, and Martin Sundland
Starring: Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Marthe Snorresdotter Rovik, and Kim Wifladt

The Plot: Jannicke (Ingrid Bolsø Berdal) is the only survivor after the events of the first Cold Prey, and in this sequel we first find her wandering aimlessly around a snowy Norweigan rural area. The police pick her up and bring her back to the local hospital where she meets local nurse Camilla who tries to discover just what poor Jannicke has been through. The police, meanwhile, head back to the hotel where Jannicke was attacked and they discover multiple bodies. Among them, the mountain man from the first movie. They bring the bodies back to the morgue, but it seems that the mountain man may not be completely out of the game yet. Much to the dismay of Jannicke, the mountain man is brought back to life and his reign of carnage continues yet again.

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Zombi 3

Posted by Josh Samford On October - 20 - 2012

Zombi 3 (1988)
Director: Lucio Fulci and Bruno Mattei
Writers: Rossella Drudi and Claudio Fragasso
Starring: Deran Sarafian, Beatrice Ring, Ottaviano Dell’Acqua, and Mike Monty.

The Plot: On a secluded military base, several top scientists are hard at work on a serum known as “death one,” which will hopefully reanimate the dead. Unfortunately, when Dr. Holder (Robert Marius) uses the serum on a human corpse, the results are not very optimistic. The cadaver awakens with a hunger for human flesh and no ability to think or feel. As Holder resigns from the project and looks to give his serum back to the military, a pair of criminals ambush the center and one makes off with “Death One.” After a series of infections break out, the military end up burning a number of bodies. This of course leads to ashes drifting into the air and infecting all flying animals within the area. As this happens, we are introduced to a trio of GIs who are off partying while on vacation. These troops team up with a bus full of other young people, and all seems to be going well for this group. However, the tides turn when some of the infected birds are discovered on the ground nearby. With this discovery comes a new human infection, and pretty soon this group will be desperately fighting for their survival.

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