Balladeer’s Blog’s month-long celebration of Halloween continues with this look at five unusual movies with that certain seasonal feel.
5. THE NUDE VAMPIRE (1970) – France’s Jean Rollin is one of those love-them-or-hate-them directors. The snooty French often bashed his films for their devotion to style over all else. Don’t believe reviews which claim that his movies have no comprehensible storylines. Personally I find him more straightforward than Lynch or Jodorowsky. At any rate the central figure of this arthouse Euro-horror is indeed a beautiful female vampire in skimpy outfits and less.
Members of a Suicide Cult have taken to offering themselves up to a vampress who turns out to be science-spawned rather than supernatural. Throw in various allusions to evolution, morality and mortality for good measure. There’s plenty of eerie and macabre imagery to go with the subtext which not only addresses the previous concepts but also examines the way in which the older generation of any time period always considers the younger generation to be figurative “monsters” who will quite literally inherit the Earth.
I’m not sure if Anne Rice was influenced by Rollin’s films but fans of her novels will probably enjoy most of this director’s oeuvre.
4. ORGY OF THE DEAD (1965) – Written (but not directed) by the one and only Ed Wood this film features a hack horror writer and his girlfriend out for a nighttime drive to aid in the creative process. After predictable misfortune with their vehicle the pair stumble into a nearby graveyard where the Emperor of the Dead, played by Wood regular Criswell, has his werewolf and mummy minions bind them to stakes. They then serve as a captive audience for a series of strip-tease dances performed by sexy undead women. No, seriously.
The strippers from beyond the grave use various themes. There’s a “Hawaiian Dancer”, a “Zombie Dancer”, a “Skeleton Dancer”, “Mexican Dancer”, “Slave Dancer” and many others. Pat Barrington from Russ Meyer movies does double duty as the writer’s girlfriend and the “Goldskinned Dancer”.
Lorali Hart, the woman whose boobs got grabbed by Leslie Nielson in the first and third Naked Gun movies, plays the “Cat Dancer” and Fawn Silver herself camps it up as Criswell’s consort the Black Ghoul. Criswell calls himself the Emperor of the Dead and Emperor of the Dark interchangeably and spouts dialogue Ed Wood recycled from Night of the Ghouls during its notorious period in limbo over Wood’s unpaid film lab bill.
3. NUDE ON THE MOON (1961) – Even Kang and Kodos on The Simpsons’ Treehouse of Terror specials have asked “What do aliens have to do with Halloween?” Well, I always use three B-movies that were often staples of Halloween marathons on various tv channels as my measuring stick. Assignment: Terror, Plan 9 From Outer Space and Frankenstein Meets The Space Monster all mix aliens in with the scares so as far as I’m concerned that means Nude on the Moon is fair game for this list!
An all-female nudist colony of telepathic aliens is living on the moon in a VERY strange city that was really just a park near Coral Gables. This movie was from the legendary Doris Wishman, who was known for having troubles with sound-synch so the aliens being”telepathic” meant their lines could be delivered via voice-over narration instead of by speaking on-camera.
Two Earth astronauts fly to the moon as part of an independent research effort. (!) Needless to say they are thrilled to see all the nude ladies and to learn the moon has a breathable atmosphere. It also goes without saying one of them falls in love with a moon-woman, causing the usual complications.
2. THE NAKED WITCH (1961) – No this is not the legendary – and as of this writing still lost – Andy Milligan movie of this title, but the better-known Larry Buchanan flick. Doris Wishman had pretty much blazed the trail for oddball premises for the dying genre of Nudie Cuties from the 1950’s. Texas’ Larry Buchanan offered his own bizarre twist on the approach with this enjoyably awful movie set in his favorite state.
(And by that I mean the state of Texas, not the state of undress.)
Buchanan fused a nudist film premise with the very, very Latin theme of a vengeful wielder of Black Magic wiping out all the descendants of the people who put the malefactor to death. Remember Black Sunday, The Brainiac and other movies, including a work or two by Paul Naschy. A man removes a stake from the corpse of a witch in a Texas cemetery, freeing her to embark on her murderous revenge spree. She’s nearly nude and is also free to perform sexy (well, sexy-ISH) dances at various Texas landmarks, but NOT the Alamo.
1. NUDIST COLONY OF THE DEAD (1991) – Written and directed by Mark Pirro, the odd mind behind Curse of the Queerwolf, A Polish Vampire in Burbank and Death Row Gameshow. Cult figure and camera hog Forrest J Ackerman portrays stuffy Judge Rhinehole (sigh), who orders the closing of the Sunny Buttocks Nudist Camp. The camp’s members all form a suicide pact and kill themselves en masse.
Five years later, when religious right-wingers have taken over the site of the former nudist camp the exhibitionists come back from the dead and terrorize them. These “pillars of the community” caused Judge Rhinehole to close the camp so they could make it a religious retreat and now the dead nudists (who are really just topless, NOT nude) exact revenge.
If you enjoyed Pirro’s other excursions into ghoulish weirdness there’s no reason you won’t like this one as well.
FOR FOUR UNIQUE ZOMBIE FILMS CLICK BELOW: https://glitternight.com/2013/10/17/four-zombie-films-that-are-actually-unique/
FOR SILENT HORROR SHORTS FROM 1896 – 1909 CLICK HERE: https://glitternight.com/2012/10/19/the-best-silent-horror-film-shorts-1896-1909/
FOR MORE HALLOWEEN ITEMS CLICK HERE: https://glitternight.com/category/halloween-season/
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