Torture Chamber of Dr. Sadism and Death Smiles on a Murderer 2008 Horror Movie Review
Horror movies Review
In THE TORTURE CHAMBER OF DR. SADISM (Die Schlangengrube und das Pendel, 1967), horror icon Christopher Lee plays a cruel nobleman torn to pieces as punishment for his crimes against innocent local virgins. But terror once again grips the peaceful European countryside when he rises undead from his glass coffin, seeking his own brand of twisted vengeance! Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe s The Pit and the Pendulum (but more directly influenced by Hammer Horror and Roger Corman s Poe adaptations), few stumbling across this atmospheric yarn during its run on the Late Late Shows of yesterday have been able to shake director Harald Reinl s heady blend of Gothic chills, movie serial thrills, outrageous sets, dynamic use of color and unforgettable imagery. With a fiendish performance by Lee (Horror of Dracula, Lord of the Rings), strapping heroics from former Tarzan Lex Barker and luscious panic courtesy of Euro goddess Karin Dor, Dr. Sadism is one-stop shopping for fans of cliffhanger suspense, rich Gothic atmosphere and good old fashioned fright films!
Taking a very different approach to Gothic horror, DEATH SMILES ON A MURDERER (La Morte ha sorriso all’assassino, 1973) tells the tale of mysterious young Greta, a bewitching amnesiac whose beguiling beauty triggers the erotic attentions of everyone she encounters…with gory and murderous results! Elliptical and darkly poetic, this unnerving early work by notorious Eurosleaze auteur Joe D Amato (aka Aristide Massaccesi) is a bizarre and hypnotic cinematic puzzle that s part ghost story, part bloody revenge saga and all synapse-frying head trip! With a memorable cast that includes former Miss Teen International Ewa Aulin (Candy, Death Laid an Egg) and the legendary Klaus Kinski (Nosferatu, Venus in Furs), DEATH SMILES ON A MURDERER is an impossible-to-categorize film with an indefinable something that has kept it high on the wish lists of every admirer of classic European horror and exploitation.
Two big, bloody bites of obscure Euro Horror, served up rare on a silver platter. Dig in!
-Wyatt Doyle, NewTexture.com
BOTH FILMS INCLUDE COMMENTARY TRACKS by Chris D. (programmer for the
American Cinematheque in Los Angeles and author of OUTLAW MASTERS OF
JAPANESE FILM) and Wyatt Doyle (newtexture.com).