Euro Horror

All posts tagged Euro Horror

Hell of a Gal: Nightmare Castle

Published January 26, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

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(Hell of a Gal explores the films of the powerful, ever luscious Euro Vixen Helga Liné.)

Jealous looks good on Helga Liné. Of course, it should be noted, that almost everything looks absolutely fabulous on this devilish wonder. But most fans would probably agree that her dual role in the classic Nightmare Castle shows her off best of all.

As Solange, the devoted companion to the crazed Dr. Stephen Arrowsmith (Paul Muller), Liné makes her first appearance in this black and white gothic adventure as a withered crone. But, when we see her next, this gorgeous creature’s true beauty is shining through. (Hmmm…I just had to work a Melanie Griffith title into the proceedings, didn’t I?) It seems that Arrowsmith’s experiments have given the aged Solange the glow of youth…and a bit of possessiveness, as well. Solange is definitely not happy with the arrival of Jenny, played by the irreplaceable Barbara Steele. Jenny is the exact replica of Arrowsmith’s late wife and although she may hold the key to their fortune, Solange would, from all appearances, like her dispatched as quickly as possible.helga 1

Of course, all does not go according to plan in the world of villainy and the arrival of Jenny’s handsome and kindly doctor (Marino Mase) and a couple of vengeful ghosts soon spell doom for Arrowsmith and Solange.

But despite the corrosiveness of her character, Steele and director Mario Caiano have nothing but praise for Line’s beauty and talent on the special features of Severin’s beautifully restored copy of the film. Indeed, Liné is, nicely, given more range to play here than is normally required of her and while Ms. Steele, rightfully, has claimed the top spot in my many terror lovers’ hearts, Line’s take on Solange here proves that, in a fair world, she would be right up there with her.

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Those interested in the restored version of this film should definitely check it out at https://severin-films.com.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan

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Hell of a Gal: Rings of Fear

Published March 23, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

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(Hell of a Gal explores the films of the ever luscious Euro Vixen Helga Liné.)

The radiant Helga Liné has over 130 credits on her resume. If all of the alternative titles of Rings of Fear, a mid career giallo, were counted among those credentials, she would have quite a number more. Known, alternatively,  as Red Rings of Fear (or Enigma Rosso), Trauma and Virgin Terror, this final entry in an unofficial Italian film series known as the Schoolgirl Trilogy, also found Liné portraying a totally sympathetic character, something that she was rarely given a chance to do.

Helga VK 4As Mrs. Russo, the anguished mother of the film’s first victim, Liné is given just a couple scenes here, but she provides plenty of understated sorrow and maternal strife in them. She also shares a nice connection with fellow Euro superstars Fabio Testi (What Have They Done to Solange, Four of the Apocalypse), as the detective investigating the case, and Nicoletta Elmi (Deep Red, Demons), who plays her youngest, incredibly inquisitive daughter. In fact, her best moments come as she, thoughtfully and quietly, answers Testi’s Di Salvo as he questions her after the funeral of her eldest child. Nicely, she gives these moments a disconnected quality, as well, nodding to her character’s expected melancholy.

The rest of the picture focuses on the unusual friendship that develops between Testi and Elmi as they try to discover what happened to her sister. Bolstered by such genre regulars as Ivan Desny, (Franco favorite) Jack Taylor and Christine Kauffman (Murders in the Rue Morgue), whose kleptomaniac character simply decides to leave Di Salvo halfway through the film, this slow burner is redeemed by an ending with several twists. Director Alberto Negrin also provides some interesting moments like the one where the off-kilter Di Salvo physically threatens Taylor’s smarmy shop owner on a roller coaster.

Helga VK 1Granted, the world probably didn’t need another sleazy film about underage prostitutes being done in by sweaty superiors, but the sight of the exquisite Liné, for even a very short period of time, is always a good reason to let some greasy celluloid settle like red dust around your sagging viewing chair.

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan

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Hell of a Gal: Death Will Have Your Eyes

Published July 25, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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(Hell of a Gal explores the exceptionally European film career of the always glorious Helga Liné.)

Sometimes a bra is tossed, irretrievably, away…and sometimes friends are ignored. Sigh. Support is just not appreciated on occasion.

The glorious Helga Liné learned this first hand in 1974 Euro trash fest Death Will Have Your Eyes. As Yvonne, the saucy best friend of Marissa Mell’s adulterous Louisa, Liné finds her honest council ignored – with murderous consequences. Of course, at first, these two ravishing beauties play nice and Liné brings a wearied friendliness to the table as Yvonne helps Louisa establish herself.helga 2

Fortified, Louisa soon marries an older, upscale doctor (Farley Granger) whose idea of a good time is reciting poetry into a recording machine. Bored, Louisa begins an affair with Stefano (Riccardo Salvino), a colleague of her husband’s. Murdering her husband in order to be with Stefano, Louisa is soon ensnared in the clutches of an all seeing blackmailer and, despite a desperate call to Yvonne, ends up falling further into self-destructiveness.

Mell, known for such films as Danger: Diabolik and The Mad Dog Killer, is just as ravishing as Liné  here and one would like to think that this duo could have gone onto create even more continental mayhem if the goddesses of cinema had looked (even more) kindly upon them.

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Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Hell of a Gal: My Dear Killer (1972)

Published May 28, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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(Hell of a Gal explores the films of the ever luscious Euro Vixen Helga Line.)

It’s always nice to introduce a new color into one’s wardrobe for hire. In fact, even the irreproachable Helga Liné turned her back on the villainous seductresses and medieval monsters that she was best known for with her appearance in the rock solid giallo My Dear Killer.MDK1

As the confused (yet surprisingly calm) Mrs. Paradisi, Liné does her best to assist George Hilton’s determined detective as he investigates the brutal murder of her common law husband. Adding glimmers of humor and classic world weariness to their conversations, our deductive damsel eventually sets out to retrieve a clue from a post box that may provide the identity of the killer. Alas, even though she is surrounded by other customers, Liné is strangled to death by a quick moving assailant, allowing the film’s mysteries to proceed to full boil.

Hilton’s Inspector Peretti soon realizes that Mr. Paradisi had discovered the identity of the killer of a young girl and her father in a kidnapping scenario gone wrong and he is soon giving investigative chase to others who may lead him to the murderer. Naturally, each meets a particularly gruesome end. Especially notable is the savage annihilation of the young girl’s former school teacher, played with saucy bravado by gorgeous Euro-regular Patty Shepard.

MDK2What is, perhaps, most notable about this entry, though, is director Tonino Valerii’s hard boiled take. He provides a slightly more realistic edge to the film’s outrageous acts of violence and twisted turns of plot, setting My Dear Killer a step or two above other black gloved entries of that era. Nicely, his efforts gave Hilton, best known then for sex comedies, a new lease on life, career-wise, and, even more importantly for viewers such as myself, allowed the world to see an established actress like Liné in an entirely different light.

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan

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Hell of a Gal: The Vampires Night Orgy

Published April 23, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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(Hell of a Gal explores the films of the ever luscious Euro Vixen Helga Liné.)

If anyone knows the importance of a well timed entrance, it’s our glorious Helga Liné!

Liné’s mysterious Countess doesn’t show up in 1974’s The Vampires Night Orgy until almost 32 minutes into the film. But she quickly makes up for lost time by seducing a sensitive poet-type and then, vampirically, feeding on him…before throwing him down to a throng of her devoted followers for further ravaging. Talk about stealing the show!

Helga VN 2Another ludicrously fun slab of cheap Euro horror, TVNO concentrates, mainly, on a group working class travelers who wind up in the Countess’ fog soaked village after their bus driver, quite rudely, dies at the wheel. Offered the run of the town by the mayor, they soon discover the price of such hospitality is their lives. Of course, the swinging lovers of the group, played by Franco regular Jack Taylor and Naschy favorite Dyanik Zurakowska, escape, but returning with the authorities, soon discover that the charming death trap has, simply, disappeared into the mists.

Unfortunately, Liné is mostly invisible here, as well. After her initial appearance, she shows up a couple of more times to feast on some of the other (less desirable) visitors, but this is definitely Taylor and Zurakowska’s show. TVNO is still highly enjoyable foreign trash, but Liné’s relative absence from the proceedings is widely felt by those looking to add a bit of auburn comfort to their afternoons.

So, until the next time, throw that copy of The Loreley’s Grasp into your DVD player…

…and SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Hell of a Gal: The Loreley’s Grasp (1974)

Published March 24, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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(Hell of a Gal explores the films of the ever luscious Euro Vixen Helga Line.)

The Wild West, the Trans-Siberian Express, a Gothic mansion…you actually can take the stunning Helga Line anywhere. But…she’ll usually be playing someone ruthless when you do it!

1974’s The Loreley’s Grasp is no different. Taking place in a tiny German village and at the all girl’s academy that is located on its outskirts, this tale, directed by The Blind Dead’s Amando De Ossorio, finds Line scantily enacting the deadly siren of the film’s title.

Beguiling Sirgurd (Tony Kendall), the hunter that has been hired to protect the students, with her black, string laden bikini and frequent dashes through the lakeside brush, Line is all exotic sexuality here. With moody stares and pouty concentration, she is an eternally compelling figure even though the plotline dictates that Sirgurd ultimately ignore her wiles for the more straightforward charms of school marm Elke, played by the equally beautiful Silvia Tortosa, who also shared the screen with Line in 1972’s Horror Express.

Helga 2Full of obviously fake, but very bloody attacks (including several shots of beating hearts being ripped from chests) courtesy of Loreley’s alter-ego, a scaly green monster, this cheesy time capsule is enjoyable not only due to Line’s compelling attitude but because of its innate ludicrousness. While Kendall’s swarthy handsomeness is a plus, the character of Sirgurd has to be one of the densest Euro horror heroes ever. After being filled in by a local musician and a determined scientist about Loreley’s deadly origins, he still can’t figure out that she is the mysterious woman that he has encountered – even after she practically confesses to him during their initial seduction scene. Tortosa’s Elke is almost equally insipid. Despite the evidence of several brutal outdoor attacks, she is constantly sneaking out at night to confront Sigrud – often ending up being targeted by her slimy nemesis.

Interestingly, the Americanized version of the film inserted red flashes to warn audiences when the picture’s more gruesome elements were about occur and was retitled When The Screaming Stops. Barf bags were also provided as a gimmick for the more sensitive viewers, as well.

If they would have asked me, I would have told them to simply concentrate on the ample awesomeness of Line to draw folks in. Well…better late than never!

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Hell of a Gal: Horror Rises from the Tomb (1973)

Published February 12, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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(Hell of a Gal explores the deliriously delectable films of Euro cult goddess and frequent Queen of Mean, Helga Line!)

If one needs further proof that European sensation Helga Line is not only a goddess, but a warrior of the female flesh as well, then they need look no further than her performance as the heart ripping, blood gobbling Mabille De Lancre in writer-actor Paul Naschy’s insane warlock-vampire-zombie hybrid Horror Rises from the Tomb.Helga 3

As the mistress to the penultimately evil Alaric de Marnac (Naschy), Mabille is executed along with him in Medieval France. The swinging 70s uproots more than those hideously flashy fashions at the discotheque, though, when de Marnac’s distant relative Hugo (Naschy again) and his friends wind up reviving the evil duo through a series of mysterious and violent circumstances. Human sacrifice, anyone?

As ravishing as ever, Mabille is soon bedding down with smitten villagers and eviscerating their central organs…all in the name of ferocious survival, of course! With a sick twist in her eye and an upturned lip or two, Line commands the screen here, reveling in Mabille’s psychotic deliciousness. Even the inevitable uprising of the corpses on the family estate doesn’t take the focus off of her.

Helga 2Missing out on the action for a good half of the film, Line also definitely makes up for lost time by showing off her glorious body (in often very chilly looking scenarios) with grand efficiency. In fact, her presence and professionalism here assure that she far outshines all of her feminine competition in the film – of which there is a great deal of – and makes one wish that she had been restituted for Panic Beats, the 1983 (sort of) sequel in which de Marnac and Naschy returned.

Oh, well….

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Get Scared TV: Riggor Mortiss Presents

Published January 7, 2015 by biggayhorrorfan

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Billed as “A New High in Horror” 1961 Euro cult masterpiece Werewolf in a Girls’ Dormitory could have probably saved my Deadhead friends a lot of weed money with just a single viewing!riggormortiss

Thankfully, gravelly voiced horror host Riggor Mortiss is here to rectify that damage with his ghoulish take on this swinging terror fest – and this latest episode of ghoulery can be seen for free on Get Scared TV.

So, get out your mini-skirts and pink Nair bombs and head on over to getscared.tv now!

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Hell of a Gal: The Blancheville Monster

Published November 13, 2014 by biggayhorrorfan

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Hell of a Gal explores the many genre credits of the eclectic, eternally glamorous Helga Liné.

Helga 3Every time I try to float into a room, I wind up tripping over my shoelaces! But, as the sensually foreboding Miss Eleonore (the companion and resourceful assistant of a regal heir) in 1963’s The Blancheville Monster (AKA Horror), the stunning Helga Liné seemingly glides into spaces with creepy panache.

Thus, despite the presence of an ominous nobleman (or two) and the escape of a crazed and disfigured father figure, Line is, ultimately, the most frightening thing on display, here.

Forever wielding needles, knives and glasses filled with potions, Liné invests her creation with such cool mystery that it appears even her cheek bones could kill you, if your trespasses were serious enough. Helga 1

Of course, director Alberto De Martino and cinematographer Alejandro Ulloa fill this tale (of a young college woman battling the dangers of a family curse) with shady texture and magnificently ominous shots of mausoleums and drafty castles. (You can even see the actors’ breath in certain shots, determining that this must have been a very frightful shoot for reasons other than haunting predictions.)

But, the arresting Liné, ultimately, cancels out even the ancient architecture. She combines the wide eyed, horrific glamour of Vampira with the elegance of a European duchess to create an indelible role in this minor Italian horror masterpiece.
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Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Heiress Horror: Formula for a Murder (1985)

Published July 24, 2014 by biggayhorrorfan

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Ruth: “I almost envy her. What a way to die, making love.”
Craig: “I know a place where you can watch.”

While they might not all enjoy the terror subgenre of Heiress Horror (wherein a sweet moneyed miss is done wrong so others may gain her fortune), The Society of Disgruntled Altar Boys simply has to enjoy the 1985 rarity Formula For A Murder for another reason. Here, two men of the cloth are, alternately, razored and bludgeoned to death with vicious glee by the film’s cash grubbing antagonist. Note: Never take a donation from amnesia stricken cripple, folks!

formula coverYes, our leading lady here, Joanna (a modestly thoughtful Christina Nagy) is confined to a wheelchair due to being viciously attacked, as a child, by a man impersonating a priest. Now, that the money is coming her way, a proposal from a hunky archery (???) coach falls on her lap. Of course, post-marriage, a morbid case of gas-lighting soon ensues.

Here, though, director/co-screenwriter Alberto de Martino (The Tempter, Blood Link, Contraband) lets you know, fairly quickly, that it is indeed the young woman’s new love (a finely outrageous David Warbeck) and her saucy best friend who are planning her undoing. With her noted weak heart, Craig (Warbeck) plans to fuck Joanna to death!formula4

Of course, strange dreams, betrayals and growing affections alter the course here and soon blood is being spilled in all directions. Even fans of strictly classic cinema should get a (minor) kick out of the proceedings due to the appearance of Rossano Brazzi (South Pacific, The Italian Job, Omen III) as Joanna’s concerned mentor.

formula-for-murder-dvd-coverStill, more than anything, this is a movie to track down for Warbeck’s blazingly frightful work. Those familiar with his heroic antics in Twins of Evil and The Beyond will be delighted by the frenzied passion he brings to this role. With demonic energy pouring from his eyes, he attacks the landscape (and Nagy) with an over brimming psychosis and scenery chewing panache.

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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