Eerie Midnight Horror Show
Continental Video – 1975 – Unrated – 85 mins
Ok, I know what you’re thinking… Why is Todd watching some film that sounds like a third-rate rip-off of “Rocky Horror Picture Show?” Well the answer is easy. That is only a title given by a U.S. distributor, but this film was originally known in Italy as L’Ossesso and released here as The Tormented, The Sexorcist and the lame-oid title above. This one has a bit of everything in it and so I cannot resist. Yep, you guessed it, we’re strapping on the big ones and heading back to Eurotrash country again this month. This one is a mid- to late 70s epic of sleaze. We’re talkin’ trashola classic here – and you will know why…
OK, Stella Carnacina stars as this kinda cute but not really brunette girl named Danilla who specializes in restoring old, run-down statues and other artwork.
The movie starts with Danilla and some guy going to a an old, abandoned church to pick up a strange life-size crucifix statue with some guy on it that looks kinda like David Hasselhoff without the afro. Danilla talks too damned much right here with a bunch of art critic types and we get some background stuff that does not matter really cuz it has no real bearing on the plot. Danilla thinks the statue is groovy and insists she works on it as soon as possible. They take it back to her art studio and sit it on a huge table. They figure the figure on the cross was made from a tree cuz he’s all one piece of wood and they take him off the cross and leave him on the table.
Next thing is Danilla going home that night to see her swinging parents are throwing a party where everyone dresses badly and dances worse. We get some real bad 70s funk music and lots of shaking butts. Here we meet Danilla’s Mom and Dad. Her Dad is in a card game, and her mom is trying to pick up some guy that looks like Joe Namath from the KC Chiefs! Soon Mom and Joe shamble off to a bedroom and she takes off her bad clothing and Joe says “You’re a gorgeous piece” and he grabs some roses and beats her naked body with ’em, leaving scratches. Mom not only is one sick chick, she needs to put her bad fashions back on. But I do know for a fact that this scene is important to the plot because Danilla sees her Mom and this guy going at it and leaves the party to go back to the art studio.
Now is when the plot really kicks in. Danilla is working on some painting of an old guy that I think might be someone famous, like maybe Col. Sanders or something. The statue starts breathing and stuff, but she doesn’t notice until the cross that he was on, now leaning on a wall, bursts into flames. Then the David Hasselhoff wanna-be statue comes alive and jumps off the table and tears off Danilla’s bad dress and they go into the mating ritual of the double humped goosenberry beast on the floor, if you know what I mean, and someone turns on a giant fan cause the scene must be getting too hot and lightning flashes and we find out it was a daydream Danilla was having while working… or so we think.
Danilla then freaks out about her daydream and calls her boyfriend who looks like a bad Robert Redford and they meet and she tells him her Mom is a freak that belongs in a sideshow and some other junk. He takes Danilla home and she climbs a million stairs to get to her bedroom only when she reaches the door she figures it’s a good time to freak out and go to town on herself, if ya know what I mean. I am not sure why, but these 70s Eurohorror/trashola flicks always have to have the girls get crazy and make like Madonna on themselves. Anyway, next thing her parents hear her and run to the room to see her flopping around on the bed like Linda did in the Exorcist. I am not sure if her bed is sitting on a bare electrical wire, or she just does the Madonna thing REAL good if you know what I mean, but she sure flops around like a crazy woman. While she flops, she scratched her stomach with her fingernails for no reason, but I am sure this is also important to the plot.
The parents talk to the boyfriend or something and decide to all go on vacation because they figure poor Danilla has just worked too hard. On the trip, Danilla has another daydream, only this time along with David Hasselhoff wanna-be guy we also get some witches in white make-up that look like some goofy Goth Rockers and only wear capes and they all put Danilla on the cross and they hammer her hands down. We get some pretty cool spewage here, and the effects are OK for an old movie. Then they get to her feet, but since he only has one spike left, he makes her cross her feet so he can nail em both. Some more groovy splooge effects and she screams a bunch and the witches all say some strange stuff in Latin or something and then they drink some kool-aid from goblets and Danilla wakes up again. Now she is in her bed, but she is totally freaking out and the parents run in and are mad because they have no Ritalin for her to take and they call the doctor. Danilla grabs her Dad by the head and clobbers him like she was Mr. T or someone. The Dad blames the Mom for being a twisted side-show freak. Then the doctor finally shows up. Danilla spits some green stuff out and they have all just watched “The Exorcist” so they know they gotta call a priest up and get some fast prayer action goin’.
The priest arrives and meets Danilla and she gets even wilder, thrashing around even more and banging the bed against the wall and sounds like she’s singing Marilyn Manson songs. They drag her out of the house and take her to a big church with some nuns running around. She gets meaner now with red eyes and spews up some more green goo. Then Danilla says all kinds of rude things and cusses a bunch. Her Robert Redford boyfriend finally shows concern. Danilla tries to seduce him and the priest because David Hasselhoff tells her to do it but nobody listens to her because they remember that she throws up green stuff. Then Danilla starts wailing on the priest like she is in a WWF grudge match and kicks his butt a while and the priest finally remembers he is a priest and starts praying and stuff and she spews more green stuff, only this time it’s got some insects in it and stuff so we can all get grossed out… These guys knew to keep things moving and to keep the plot important we had to make the spewage grosser each time! In his last breath, the priest drives out David Hasselhoff and his evil minions and Robert Redford comes in and picks up Danilla, who is no longer possessed and they go home. They just leave the dead priest there I guess because the film ends on a freeze frame of Danilla.
Now as you can tell, this is a great Exorcist rip-off with enough crapola sleaze factor to keep the plot fresh and fun from Italian director Mario Gariazo. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys nice family entertainment, with some religious overtones, or just for people who like rose whippings, Madonna imitations and bad fashion. A classic.
5 / 8 / 8