Sunday, May 1, 2016

The Embalmer, Preserving the Beauty of Italy

...with embalming fluid! 1965's "The Embalmer" (aka "Il Monstro di Venezia") is another Italian horror film which utilizes a sex-maniacal killer who preys on beautiful young women. Edgar Allan Poe believed there was nothing more beautiful than a dead, beautiful woman.  The fiend in our film obviously agrees.  With a jazzy musical score and a tip of the hat to the beatnik culture, today's film plays out like a Poe tale.
Beautiful 18 year old Italian damsels are grabbed by a SCUBA clad madman and dragged into the canal.  These women are then pulled into an underground lab, and embalmed, thus preserving their stunning looks forever.  Who is our monster?  Andrea (Luigi Martocci), a handsome investigative reporter, is on the case.  The cops haven't any clues, and no bodies have washed up, but Andrea figures a monster from the canals is responsible.  Lucky Andrea, he befriends Maureen (Maureen Brown) who is chaperoning a dozen 18 year old beauties from Rome.  Maureen and Andrea get quite close and the students are eager to see Venice.
As more gals are abducted, and added to the monster's macabre harem, the students catch the eye of our killer. As Maureen valiantly attempts to keep a watchful eye on her gals, Andrea dives into the canals looking for the killer's lair.  A dozen sultry college students from Rome frolicking through the canals are just too much for our killer's hormones and he makes a bold move for one of them.  As Andrea reacts to that, the fair Maureen stumbles onto a macabre secret deep underneath the streets of Venice.  The ending will be frightening, fast-moving....and rather surprising.
Directed with style by Dino Tavella, this film never feels obliged to make us feel good.  As Venice slowly is consumed by the water, the evil from an underground/water lab bubbles up to the surface in shocking fashion.  Will Maureen's naive beauties be spared unimaginable horror and torture?  Will Andrea and Maureen kindle a love affair amidst the carnage?  For some quirky and semi-erotic horror, enjoy "The Embalmer" from Italy.

1 comment:

  1. I have to see this! Thanks again, Chris for another recommendation!