Monday, November 5, 2012

31 Days of Horror: Day 18: La maschera del demonio 'Black Sunday' (1960)

Black Sunday is one strange movie. I'd describe it as gothic horror. It's about a witch, who while being burned at the stake and smashed in the face with a mask of the devil, puts a curse on the royal family claiming that she will one day return.

Centuries later, two doctors, Dr. Andre Gorobec and Dr. Thomas Kruvajan, are traveling into the city for a medical conference when their carriage breaks outside a crypt, the one containing the old witch's remains. There is glass over the coffin, showing the mask over the woman's face and a cross to ward her off if she were to reawaken.

For some reason, Dr. Kruvajan decides to break into the coffin, destroying the cross and stealing the mask. Clearly, this was an enormously stupid thing to do. His blood drops onto the corpse and reawakens the witch. She will do everything in her power to possess the body of her look-alike descendant, Princess Asa Vajda, no matter how many people she and her servant murder along the way.

I love the atmosphere of this film. The use of light and dark makes scenes extra creepy. You never know what could be lurking around the corner! Especially when you're in a graveyard or a gothic castle with hidden passageways! I also liked that the witch wasn't just a witch, she was a vampire-witch. Vampire-witches are extremely evil! Capable of doing both witchcraft and conniving vampire tricks! She's one villain you don't want to mess with.

This is the first Mario Bava film that I've watched. I plan on watching more because I like his style. If you have Netflix, Black Sunday is currently on instant. The dubbing is a bit horrific at times, but it's still possible to enjoy the film. 


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