June 28, 2020
THE BLANCHEVILLE MONSTER (1963) is a gothic horror film set in 1884 which has a small cast of characters wandering around a huge castle-like home searching for different things. At times the castle search is for the origin of a strange nighttime noise (Is that a man moaning in pain?) or for a missing companion (Did they go down to the dungeons for some reason?). Sound familiar? But, in the end, everyone is searching for both romance and the answer to a family mystery. Well, usually that’s what happens in these types of movies. Actually, this film throws us several curveballs by, at first, having a haunting mystery at its center (“Oh, you silly dear. You didn’t really see what you clearly saw.”) and then tossing it out for a darker plot involving disfigurement, madness and murderous intent. It all revolves around family curses so at least that aspect of gothic tales is kept all the way through!
Troy and I step carefully through this film’s dark corridors holding our candelabras aloft searching for the meaning of it all. We discuss the Gothic Romance as a genre and I outline my newer understanding of it. We talk about the usual tropes of these tales and the ways in which this one adheres and deviates from them. I was actually shocked that there was no incest! The period setting and real castle locations work well to create a fair amount of atmosphere and the fact that we can almost always see the actor’s breath adds to the chilly mood. It is really a shame that this movie’s status as a Public Domain work continues to keep a good looking print available. The black and white photography cries out for sharp resolution without the dark, muddy smearing that obscures from view the efforts of the legendary cinematographer Alejandro Ulloa. I sincerely hope that we one day get a remastered version of this interesting film. I did I mention that Helga Line is in this? We must get a better print!
We end the show with a new instrumental song called Mystery Machine from Troy’s band The Exotic Ones. This tune is on their forthcoming EP and it drops in the next few days. Check it out! The podcasters can be reached at email@example.com with any comments or suggestions. As is evidenced by this episode we do take advice from listeners, so add your voice to the proceedings. We’re always interested in what Naschy related films we could cover next! Thank you for listening.
April 28, 2020
Westerns are not the most frequent category of cinema covered on this podcast. In fact, this episode marks only the third one in the ten years we’ve been doing this! That might be considered strange when you know just how many fine examples of the genre were made in Spain employing Spanish actors and technicians. Because of the low costs of production many westerns were shot in the Spanish countryside and on the standing sets built for countless Italian movies including some American productions. The cleverest of filmmakers found ways to make those places look fresh and interesting. Such is true of THE MAN CALLED NOON (1973).
We discovered this film while digging into the credit listings of one of Paul Naschy’s most impressive female co-stars. The sight of Patty Shepard aiming a six-gun while dressed in an all black cowboy ensemble encouraged our curiosity and the online plot synopsis grabbed our attention. Based on a Louis L’amour novel? Directed by the guy who made THE ITALIAN JOB (1969)? The lead is played by Rambo’s boss? And the luminous Rosanna Schiaffino is in it as well? How could we resist?
The mystery at the heart of this twisty tale is unraveled slowly over the film’s running time so we do our best to keep spoilers out of our discussion. There are so many reveals and discoveries along the way that we thought it would be best to let new viewers find them as the story plays out. This is a movie with a lot of interesting characters and learning about them is more than half the fun.
We don’t have any new emails or messages to respond to in this episode so if you have any comments for the show we can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or over on the FaceBook page. We’d be thrilled to hear from you!
March 26, 2020
The year of new guests continues as the 10th anniversary year celebration rolls on!
This time we have only two people visiting but we talk to them for quite a long time. Kat Ellinger has made a name for herself in film fanatic circles over the last several years as the editor-in-chief of Diabolique Magazine as well as writing for both that site and the British Film Institute among others. She is a prolific commentary track creator contributing to dozens of Blu-Rays ranging from classic Hollywood to arthouse cinema to Euro-Trash of the filthiest type! She’s even a podcaster, teaming with up with fellow female film fans to discuss cult movies in Daughters of Darkness and Helles Belles. And did I mention her book about the great Sergio Martino? Kat was nice enough to add her voice to this show and chose DOCTOR JEKYLL AND THE WEREWOLF (1972) to dig into. I had a blast talking with her and can’t wait to do it again!
Robert Monell has been a guest on The Bloody Pit but never before on this show. His is the writer behind the amazing blog “I’m In a Jess Franco State of Mind” where he has reviewed and dissected the work of that Spanish filmmaker since 2006. He has since branched out into creating extras for various Franco Blu-Ray releases and moved into commentating on movies as well. He also runs the Cinemadrome film forum which hosts some of the most interesting discussions of cult cinema you’ll find on the web. For his visit to this show Mr. Monell chose one of the most problematic of Naschy’s werewolf films, FURY OF THE WOLFMAN (1970). He has some interesting things to say about it starting with digging into the probable origins of its basic plot. It is quite an interesting find!
Troy and I end the show with an extended dive into the mailbag to finally catch up on our backlog. We answer a lot of questions and take notes on possible future episode subjects. We can be reached at email@example.com or over on the FaceBook page for the show. Let us know what you think and we’ll be back soon with more Spanish Horror!
February 2, 2020
With this episode we cross the one decade mark!
Neither Troy or I thought we’d still be making this podcast ten years after we began, but here we are! We realized that, although our enthusiasm for Paul Naschy’s work has only grown, it was time to actively seek out more new voices to include on the show. So, our goal for 2020 is to speak to a host of people who have never been on the podcast to get their perspectives on his movies. A diversity of opinion is always food for thought and we think this will be the perfect way to start new discussions about the long legacy of Jacinto Molina. These are great days for Senor Naschy as more and more of his films are available on Blu-Ray bringing a whole new generation of fans to his mad world of monsters and horror. That means people are discovering El Hombre Lobo and his other creations every day so its time to kick open the doors and see what his influence is a full decade after his passing.
This giant-sized episode includes four new voices to the podcast. I asked each participant to talk about one of the Waldemar Daninsky films and they (luckily) jumped at the chance. Adrian Smith has podcasted with me over on The Bloody Pit discussing INSEMINOID and CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST but he steps up to discuss his first Naschy werewolf film - WEREWOLF SHADOW. Derek Koch is a podcasting O.G. with his incredibly popular Monster Kid Radio serving as a focal point for these kinds of classic (and not so classic) movies. He joins us to talk about the Naschy monster mash ASSIGNMENT TERROR. Author Steven Sullivan has been on the Bloody Pit in the past talking about the colorful Doctor Who films made in the 1960’s, but his love of all things Naschy bubbles over in our conversation about CURSE OF THE DEVIL. Matthew Kowalski is a longtime fan of the podcast and has often written in to give us his thoughts on the various Spanish horror topics we dig into on the show. He sat down to talk about his favorite of the Daninsky films – WEREWOLF SHADOW - giving us a different look at that iconic movie. Afterward, Troy and I tackle an email and makes plans to get to our backlogged correspondence over the next couple of shows. We promise!
I’ve already got a couple more guests for future episodes lined up including some folks I’ve never spoken with before. So exciting! This is going to be a great year for the Naschycast even if I don’t think we’ll produce another four-and-a-half-hour episode! Seriously, I’ll try to break things up as we go forward.
If you have any comments or suggestion please write us at firstname.lastname@example.org or message us on the Facebook page. Thank you for listening and we’ll be back soon!
October 25, 2019
The Naschycast returns for October! Barely. And we work diligently to NOT spoil this film for newcomers!
THE CORRUPTION OF CHRIS MILLER (1973) is one of the most overlooked and least talked about of the Spanish horror films of the 1970’s. In a way this is good because its rarity leaves its many secrets and revelations unknown to modern viewers. There’s a good debate to be had about how the film should be labeled. Is it a thriller or a horror film? Often the line between those two symbiotic genres can be teased apart but I think this film straddles the fence right up until the mid-point farmhouse set-piece. That is a sequence that is sure to impress even the most jaded of horror fans! Mark this film down as another precursor of the slasher genre.
We start off this show with some news and a sad goodbye to a good friend and contributor to the podcast. As stated, Troy and I do our best to not spoil the many third act disclosures that twist this amazingly well written thriller into new and wholly unexpected shapes. We talk a little about the three actors at the center of this pressure cooker drama with some attention to the earlier careers of the two female leads. Jean Seberg is a screen legend with a dozen films on her resume that would be the highlight of any actor’s life. The lovely Marisol is great here but it’s fascinating to learn of her very successful music career as a young woman. And we speculate that Barry Stokes may have been asked by a British director to essentially play exactly the same role he does here in a later film. I’d love to find out how much this movie influenced that 1977 picture. We marvel over the fine direction and cinematography, the sharp dialog and nuanced characters as we strain to keep from discussing the end of the story. It is not easy!
If you have any thoughts about THE CORRUPTION OF CHRIS MILLER or anything else we discuss in this episode please drop us a line at email@example.com and we’ll include them in the next episode. Thank you for listening and we’ll talk to you again soon.
August 24, 2019
After nearly ten years of covering Paul Naschy films it is no secret that we have reached the final few movies that are available for us to see. Sure, we’ve stayed away from some later efforts with very small roles for our hero that might be worthy of attention. But, of the movies made during his most productive years, there are not many left to dig into and most of those are movies that were never released in the United States or, in some cases, outside of Spain. Luckily, the fan-subbing community once again comes to the rescue allowing us to finally check another rare one off our Naschy bucket list. The film’s cast also includes the excellent Aurora Bautista in a significant role as well as Eva León and Loreta Tovar so there are some familiar faces for Spanish Horror fans.
LOS PASAJEROS (1975) is a hard to find film for many reasons. It seems to have been barely released even in Spain and to have been the first of only two feature films directed by José Antonio Barrero. Mr. Barrero contributed the screen story for this effort as well so it seems logical to attribute the film’s quirks to his sensibilities. He appears to have been aiming this movie at the arthouse crowd couching his (supposedly) big statements in arch symbolic actions that often leave viewers scratching their heads. It may be that a Spanish filmgoer in the mid-1970’s would have been able to puzzle out the meaning of what happens onscreen but we might never know. Still, there are points of interest for the hardcore Naschy fan since Mr. Molina has a substantial role as the rich patron presiding over a house filled with subservient people. Naschy commands these visitors to his isolated home to act out scenes from plays while he watches. It’s all pretty weird!
At the end of the show we reply to a pair of recent emails to the podcast. If you have comments or questions the address is firstname.lastname@example.org where we’ll be glad to hear from you. If you don’t want us to use your full name on the show please let us know. Thank you for listening to this episode and we’ll be back soon with another Beyond Naschy show!
July 19, 2019
It’s not often we get the opportunity to meet any of the friends we’ve made over the course of making the Naschycast. When we do (and I have enough lead-time) I try to record these fellow fans’ thoughts on our favorite Spanish Horror star. Such is the case with this mini-episode interview with longtime fan of the show and major fan of Paul Naschy – Mike Tutino! Mike has been a generous contributor to the podcast over the years with several letters of comment and observation as we’ve gone along. It was a joy to finally meet him at this summer’s Monster Bash in Pittsburgh and he is more than willing to give us a list of his favorite Naschy movies. There are a few surprises in our discussion with some affection lavished on films that Troy and I have possibly given less attention than we should. Food for further thought……..
Also, we mention the details of the upcoming releases of the new Naschy Blu-Rays coming out this year but – when talking about the exciting release of THE MUMMY’S REVENGE on Blu-Ray we neglected to tell listeners to go to the Ronin Flix website to purchase that disc. That is the only place you’ll be able to buy the film before it starts turning up on secondary sites for outrageous inflated prices. Don’t miss out!
If you have any comments or suggestions or if you want to let us know what your favorite lesser talked about Naschy film might be the email address is email@example.com where we’ll be thrilled to hear from you. We’ll be back next month with a new, regular episode covering a really rare Naschy film from 1975. Thanks for listening!
June 19, 2019
Leon Klimovsky directed dozens of films of all genres but will forever be remembered for his substantial contributions to Spanish Horror. In collaboration with Paul Naschy he made some of the most successful and effective monster movies to come out of Europe in the 1970's. The horror tales he made without Naschy are often overlooked with THE DRACULA SAGA (1973) being a perfect example. Graced with a literate, intelligent script and the music of Bach, Klimovsky brings all of his impressive skill to making a smart and, in the end, surprising take on classic vampire mythology. This one doesn't end the way you might think it will!
Troy and I are clearly thrilled to be back in the Golden Age of Spanish Horror again. We marvel over the very strong cast that includes an actor who played Dracula multiple times over the years but is rarely talked about when discussing screen vampires. Working with the director again is the always wonderful Helga Liné as the matriarch of the cursed family, Maria Kosty as a young, dangerous part of the clan and Betsabé Ruiz as a local bar wench gone vamp. Add in Tony Isbert as a husband with a wandering eye and the talented Tina Sáinz in the lead role and you have a great group of actors giving this story their full attention. And how many Dracula films add the lamia myths to the mix?
If you have any comments or suggestions we can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on the show's FaceBook page. Thank you for listening and we'll be back soon with another very rare Naschy film!
March 15, 2019
Our latest episode has us finally covering an under seen and not often spoken about horror classic. A BELL FROM HELL (1973) straddles the fence between the worlds of Art-House and Exploitation cinema taking elements from both to create an impressive fusion. It's easy to imagine this film playing to highbrow crowds seeking an intellectual vision of the fate of aristocratic families in rural Spain under the Franco regime. But it's even easier to think of it playing in grindhouse theaters for people looking for cheap horror thrills from a film about a well planned, well deserved revenge. Luckily, these dissimilar audiences get what they want here with enough intelligence and excitement for both types to feel satisfied with this darkly comic tale. It's a creepy tale of hate, greed and lust couched in clearly symbolic terms to make comment on life under a repressive government. It'll keep you guessing right up until the end credits!
Troy and I try not to spoil too much of this one as it is less well known than it should be. (Where is the Blu-Ray of this exceptional work?) Nevertheless, we talk about the obvious symbolic connection between the titular bell and the film's main character as we watch him released from an asylum to return home. His aunt and cousins welcome him back, with reservations, as we watch him begin a series of increasingly cruel practical jokes with a deadly endpoint in mind. We discuss the unfortunate fate of the film's talented director, the exceptional career of the screenwriter and explain that you certainly have seen some of the cast in other places. See if you can spot where I catch myself when delineating the possible symbolic nature of certain characters because I realize I might end up spoiling one of the film's nastier surprises. Sometimes my thoughts race ahead of my best intentions!
We end the show with a voicemail from a British listener which prompts us to talk a bit about Jess Franco films again. It's pretty easy to get us onto that topic, huh? If you have any comments or questions the email address is email@example.com or we can be reached on the show's FaceBook page. Thank you for downloading and listening! Oh -and vote for us in the Rondo Awards! We'd love to win in the category BEST MULTIMEDIA SITE!
February 15, 2019
The Naschycast returns with our ninth anniversary episode! We dive back into the films of beloved Spanish filmmaker Jess Franco with THE DIABOLICAL DR. Z (1966). This is one of the director's final black & white movies and is considered by many to be his most accomplished work. I'm not sure where I would rank it on Franco's long list of credits but it is certainly a fantastic and beautiful horror film that features several amazing performances. It also has one of the best revenge seeking female mad scientist characters in cinema history. The lovely and deadly Doctor Zimmer is not someone you want to antagonize! Especially not when she can bend to her will the incredible nightclub dancer Nadia (a.k.a. Miss Death) whose long fingernails are laced with poison! And did I mention the murderous, mind-controlled escaped convict willing to strangle anyone blocking the destructive path of this mad woman? Strap in or, more likely, be held down by scary robotic arms for this amazing film!
Troy and I ramble our way through a discussion of this Spanish Horror classic marveling at the clarity and sharpness of the print available on the Kino Blu-Ray. The black & white cinematography of Alejandro Ulloa is remarkable to see in high definition. As fans of his director of photography work for Naschy's lushly colorful EL CAMINATE (1979) and NIGHT OF THE WEREWOLF (1981) we're amazed by his ingenuity at presenting shades of light and darkness without losing detail. Even if the film was only half as good as it is Ulloa's skill would make this a must-see for curious cinema aficionados.
We pick apart the plot, question the need for certain evil elements and gush about the intelligence of the script. Some time is spent on co-writer Jean-Claude Carrière's amazing career with me delighting in talking about his late 1950's Frankenstein sequel novels. The adult nature of the story is discussed as we make note of possible censored spots in the narrative. The amusing onscreen roles played by Franco and his longtime musical collaborator Daniel White are pointed out so that we can praise their acting talent. And we can't resist taking note of Franco's kitty co-star in one scene and his rather direct directorial touch with this wandering performer. Meow!
Any comments or questions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or dropped on the Naschycast Facebook page. We read out a couple of missives in the final few minutes of this episode and they stir some unexpected conversation, as always. Thank you for downloading and listening to the show. We'll be back next month with more Spanish Horror!