Ilsa Collection She Wolf of the SS/Harem Keeper of the Oil Sheiks/The Wicked Warden 2004 Horror Movie Review
Horror movies Review
I’ve read so much about these infamous 70’s exploitation films that I just knew I had to see them. In the mid-1970s the limits of bad taste were stretched by the notorious Ilsa films, these were over-the-top exploitation films which had plenty of stomach-churning gore, violence and sex that they both shocked and amazed grindhouse and drive-in audiences. Crowds generally lined up to watch a larger-than-life Dyanne Thorne whip and torture her way through these films and the audience loved it, Ilsa was the evil dominatrix nazi that loved torturing and mutilating her victims and in each film she would be in a different setting and time period, while most of the acting was pretty laughable you just can’t help but enjoy these films if off course you weren’t offended by this material. Dyanne Thorne was just great in this role and you must admit that Ilsa was quite a cool and memorable villain and not to mention quite despicable and yet still attractive, but a one night stand with Ilsa is something you’ll definitely regret in the morning! ;-).
In Ilsa: She Wolf of the SS, a Nazi medical camp during WWII provides the backdrop for brutality as Ilsa (Dyanne Thorne) and her minions including the sinister Dr. Binz (Buck Flower), perform bizarre experiments. A truckload of fresh prisoners, both male and female are subjected to insidious and extreme torture as Ilsa tries to prove that women have a higher threshold for pain and suffering than men. At night Ilsa indulges in in a liaison with one of the new inmates, an American named Wolfe (Gregory Knoph) with abnormal sexual powers. While Ilsa prepares to show off her cruel scientific breakthroughs to the General (Richard Kennedy), the other inmates plan an escape and to get their revenge on the She-Wolf. The scenes of torture were pretty heavy and there was some nasty stuff like a woman who gets boiled alive in scolding hot water agh!, you also get electric shock, genital torture, whipping, castration ect. This was probably my favorite from the Ilsa films, the hamminess of the acting can distract the viewer into laughing at inappropriate moments but you will still feel sick at the shocking scenes of torture. this film is still essentialy ‘wrong’ on so many levels it’s just not true, and I doubt it could even get made today! That alone is probably enough to keep those who aren’t easily offended glued to the screen to the end. Great stuff!.
In Ilsa, Harem Keeper of the Oil Sheiks, this time Ilsa shows up in the Middle East. The evil Sharif (Victor Alexander) depends on Ilsa to run his white slavery ring, which kidnaps young girls and sells them to the highest bidder. Between auctions Ilsa trains the girls to please their new masters who are rich oil barons looking for new additions to their harems. There’s also a subplot where a secret agent shows up to investigate and Ilsa risks the security of El Sharif’s operation as her sexual desires once again outweigh her duties, just like how it happened in the first film. Off course the plot was ridiculous, how did she survive at the end of the last film and how come she hasn’t aged one bit when this film supposedly takes place in the present 1976, but then again you probably won’t be watching this for a great storyline or oscar worthy acting, just watch this for the gore and nudity there was an exploding stomach scene that made this worth watching as the special fx looked pretty good for a 70’s flick. The amount of flesh on display is just staggering, so sexploitation fans will definitely get their fill and it was pretty good but not as shocking or great as the first film.
In her third incarnation as Ilsa the Wicked Warden, Ilsa is the keeper of a South American prison infirmary dedicated to cleansing its female inmates of nymphomania, lesbianism, and prostitution. After a prisoner of Ilsa’s institution named Rosa mysteriously disappears, her younger sister Abbie (Tania Busselier) has herself committed to find out what really happened. Meanwhile, Ilsa who is never satisfied with just torture, has an attractive sideline going. She secretly films her girls in sexual situations and then sells the footage to rich private collectors. This was the weakest film in the series cause it took a while for the torture to happen and it was a bit tame compared to the previous films so I was a bit disappointed, however there was plenty of nudity and sleaze. This particular film had alot of boring dialogue scenes and what made it worse was the horrible acting and dubbing, it was more like a prison film but I wasn’t that impressed.
Each of the films has an enhanced widescreen aspect ratio of (1.66:1) and the picture quality was quite impressive and looked well, each of the films had the same features. You have a theatrical trailer, commentary track and talent bios and that’s about it but Anchor Bay did a great job restoring these films. Fans of cult and exploitation cinema simply have to own these films, or at least rent them but make sure there the uncut versions, my bet is that probably at least half the general population will be repelled, the rest would be bored or possibly seriously offended. It’s not PC, it’s not clever but at least they’re well-made sleazy exploitation trash, which doesn’t take itself the least bit seriously and they are kind of enjoyable. I highly recommend these films to hardcore horror fans with strong stomachs, the rest should probably avoid this you have been warned.