Monday, October 3, 2022

Angel of Death, The 4th Reich Emerges in South America

I loved the Gregory Peck, Laurence Olivier film from 1977 "The Boys from Brazil."  The Ira Levin story made a terrifying film.  In 2022 we yawn at talk of an emergence of a Fourth Reich.  When Ira Levin wrote the story, the horrors of the Third Reich were still in our immediate past.  A lot of questions were still unanswered.  Did the Nazi leader really die in a bunker?  Where was Mengele?  What were the escaped Nazis doing in in South America with the blessings of the Perons and even some left wing nuts there.  Hence we look at a film, directed in part by Jesus Franco, 1985's "Angel of Death" (aka "Commando Mengele, Angel of Death").

The Israelis desperately want Mengele (Howard Vernon).  They send commandos to Rio to try to positively identify him and capture him alive.  Then, finally, a break.  The sultry Eva (Suzanne Andrews), a nightclub entertainer, is fetched at her club by Wolfgang (Christopher Mitchum).  Wolfgang collects Eva, not for himself, but his boss...Dr. Mengele.  Mengele collects perfect specimens to birth his genetic experiments...and Eva is a perfect specimen.  She'll be artificially inseminated with the sperm of...well, this is where it gets abhorrent.  She might be carrying a chimpanzee in her womb.  To the rescue, Israeli commandos led by Mark (Antonio Mayans). with child (or, with monster) tells Mark to send her back...she wants to help overthrow Mengele.

Uh oh...Mengele is training soldiers to take over every South American country and turn the continent into his own country.  From there, the Fourth Reich will emerge and conquer the world.  Eva tries to tell Mengele she was kidnapped and did not leave willingly.  Mengele does not believe her and cages her in a room filled with his failed experiments which include half man/half ape mutants and even a cute little chimpanzee.  Now the commandos, commanded by some guy named Folsberg (Fernando Rey) are sent to destroy the emerging army of the Fourth Reich and capture Mengele alive.  A vicious battle with machineguns and crossbows ensues.

Not the feel good movie of 1985, but a lot more tamed in the morbid factor than...say..."A Bridge Too Far."  In real life, Josef Mengele was never captured by the Israelis.  No doubt his punishment is appropriate where he is now.  For a weird take on a weird historical epoch (the German migration to South America post World War 2), see "Angel of Death," and then see the more louder "The Boys from Brazil."  

1 comment:

  1. hi chris! is there an email address for you? where I can send press releases or updates. thank you!