Posts tagged "El Santo"

Santo y Blue Demon vs Drácula y el Hombre Lobo

Santo y Blue Demon vs Drácula y el Hombre Lobo

aka Santo and Blue Demon vs. Dracula and the Wolfman

1973
Written by Alfredo Salazar
Directed by Miguel M. Delgado

Santo Blue Demon Dracula Wolfman
We slept so long our clothes are in style again!

Unlike the prior Santo and Blue Demon vs. The Monsters, Santo y Blue Demon vs Drácula y el Hombre Lobo is a slower paced and more methodological monster film. Instead of celebrating B movie creatures and having monsters inspired by Universal classics, Dracula and the Wolf Man here are more patterned after the Hammer horror films. The creatures are still deadly, there is still a huge body count, and even major side characters die! Things just go real.

Santo Blue Demon Dracula Wolfman
Rounders: The Lucha Years

The lower budget causes more sets to be noticeably sets and not real locations. Santo y Blue Demon vs Drácula y el Hombre Lobo tries to offset this by having more things take place indoors or inside of caves. The few brief outside at night shots feature lighting of an unnatural blue, which eerily mimics to bright blue and red colors of the stadium backgrounds during the wrestling matches (which are also obviously on a stage and not in a real stadium!) The use of bright colors even extends to the opening credits, where bright red is the tone of choice. The atmospheric score is largely piano with some organ parts. The bright colors contrast with the black and white Santo films that gave off a more Gothic horror feel. The bright color but serious tones doesn’t match the campy drive-in approach of Santo and Blue Demon vs. The Monsters, moving vs Drácula y el Hombre Lobo in between the camp and the attempts at serious horror. The dichotomy gives an interesting feel to the film, making it just playful enough that you fall into a lull of disarmament, making the deaths of major characters more shocking.

Does Santo y Blue Demon vs Drácula y el Hombre Lobo fulfill the required Santo obligations? We have Santo and Blue Demon both wrestling opponents in matches that the movie shows in full. Instead of a mad scientist, we got a mad Satanist (some would argue that’s the same thing, but fuck those people!) Monsters? Check! Santo dating someone whose family is intertwined with the monsters in a complicated revenge plot? Check! Blue Demon knocked unconscious? Check! References to past heroic deeds of Santo and/or Blue Demon that aren’t from any film? Check! Blue Demon captured by the enemy and rescued by Santo? Check!

Santo Blue Demon Dracula Wolfman
When Satanists do the wave…

One thing Santo y Blue Demon vs Drácula y el Hombre Lobo does different is the police don’t believe Santo’s crazy story. In any other film, Santo would be called in to deal with the monsters and the police would give him leeway to do whatever he or Blue Demon want. Here, the police laugh at their outlandish tales of Dracula and the Wolfman. Haven’t they paid attention for the last 20 Santo films???

Santo Blue Demon Dracula Wolfman
When will Blue Demon find…his endless love???

Santo (Santo) – Santo is friend to all…wait, that’s not right. Santo is that famous wrestler you may have heard of. Perhaps. He’s once again dating a girl whose family is cursed with monsters seeking revenge. Heck, one time Santo dated the Swiss Miss girl and had to kill Count Chocula, Frankenberry, Boo Berry, and even Yummy Mummy.
Blue Demon (Blue Demon) – Blue Demon is friend to all Santo. He’s another famous wrestler you may have heard of. Blue Demon once again plays second fiddle to Santo, despite being in the title. Poor Blue Demon…
Drácula (Aldo Monti) – Dracula is in Mexico because that’s what he does and he’s been dead dead for 200 years, but is brought back to life by the power of Satan. And revenge. Now, he’s got the evil eye for Santo and Blue Demon, and anyone who makes fun of his cape!
El Hombre Lobo/Wolfman (Agustín Martínez Solares) – You can’t have Dracula without the Wolfman, so here he is, ready to join his life partner in evil doings.
Rufus Rex (Agustín Martínez Solares) – This wolfman’s got nards, and swagger, as he runs around in human form as Rufus Rex and seduces Laura Cristaldi to her peril.
Lina (Nubia Martí) – Santo’s girlfriend. Professor Luis Cristaldi is her uncle, Laura Cristaldi is her cousin, and Rosita is Laura’s daughter. All are cursed. CURSED!!!
Eric (Alfredo Wally Barrón) – Just your average Satanist who brings Dracula and Wolfman back to life to steal their gold or something.
Santo Blue Demon Dracula Wolfman
All these boxes are filled with more Santo sequels!

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - November 6, 2012 at 3:55 pm

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Santo el Enmascarado de Plata y Blue Demon Contra los Monstruos (Review)

Santo el Enmascarado de Plata y Blue Demon Contra los Monstruos

aka Santo and Blue Demon Against the Monsters

1970
Story by Jesús Sotomayor Martínez and Rafael García Travesi
Screenplay by Rafael García Travesi
Directed by Gilberto Martínez Solares

The most popular hair salon in Transylvania…

When it’s night time and fright time, and things are going bump in the night, the monsters come out to play. A whole football team full of monsters! Luckily, the world has Santo and Blue Demon to do what they do best: Kicking monster butt!

Santo films started out like Cerebro Del Mal where they were more low key and just science fiction influenced capers. Santo played more of a supporting role at first. Many of the Santo films that followed would feature influences from horror flicks of the drive in, as Santo battled female vampires, zombies, a spooky wax museum, and stranglers. But by the time Santo fought the Martians, the Santo films were emulating the 1950s and 60s American B movie pictures that were lighting up the night skies at drive ins across North America. Santo would become more science fiction, engaging in spy episodes, running around with famous comedians, and even battling a famous movie monster or two. Influences would continue, and Santo el Enmascarado de Plata y Blue Demon Contra los Monstruos is no exception, the large amount of classic movie monsters present shows a clear influence from the Universal Monster movies.

It’s hard for a super-intelligent brain alien like me to find a girl, what with being an abomination against nature and all…

Even though there are influences, there are differences and odd themes. Wolfman, Vampire, and Cyclops all have big ears for some odd reason. And the Cyclops acts like the Creature from the Black Lagoon, acting as a surrogate for that missing member. Mummy barely appears in the film, wandering around and acting lazy. He also needs to eat a sandwich. Frankenstein looks like he’s tripping on mushrooms, which I think might have been how the film’s concept was dreamed up. The mad scientist Dr. Halder also has some green thugs that are called zombies but some sources, though I just dubbed them Frankenthugs. The large amount of monsters adds energy and a fast pace to the film, as it rushes to try to give everyone enough screentime, and the pace is rather quick for a Santo film.

According to Jim….lives again?!?!?!

Unfortunately there is a lot of cost cutting in this flick, it’s obvious what little budget there was went towards setting up the monster lineup. Most of the sets are sparse, and there is only one real scene that feels like it takes place at an actual place. There is even an extended sequence at that location that is obviously a stage play filmed for some other reason, and added here for padding and flavor. Santo and Blue Demon Against the Monsters features lots of shots that are shot in the daytime but set at night. Normally movies get around that by applying a blue filter to the movie, but that must have cost too much because they didn’t bother to do it all all.

Director Gilberto Martínez Solares was one of the best directors of early Mexican cinema, working often with Tin Tán, but his star began to fade and he soon was directing schlock like this and even worse things after. Though I think the Santo films and Santo el Enmascarado de Plata y Blue Demon Contra los Monstruos in particular are important features on the Mexican cinema landscape, they aren’t considered quality work, and Solares must have been phoning it in as his trajectory waned.

The Vampire is too cheap to turn the AC on during July!

Despite the budget woes and quality issues, Santo and Blue Demon vs the Monsters still ends up being a fun flick, and is among the Santo films you should see first just to get your toes wet. If you can handle Santo and Blue Demon punching their way through a castle filled with people in bad masks, you are ready to expand your journey. This is one of the easier titles to get, and is visual enough that even if your copy is minus subtitles, it won’t be a big loss.

No, keep your eye on the BALL, not the bat! Ball, BALL!!

Santo (Santo) – Santo the great hero braves all the evils that threaten the good people of Mexico. And also threaten relatives of his girlfriend, which happens far too often to be a coincidence. Santo must be seeking these girls out just so he can beat up monsters! What a freak…
Blue Demon (Blue Demon) – Santo’s best buddy in fiction if not reality, Blue Demon is captured early on in Santo el Enmascarado de Plata y Blue Demon Contra los Monstruos and replaced by an evil double.
Otto Halder and Gloria Halder (Jorge Rado and Hedi Blue) – The brother of the evil Dr. Bruno Halder and his daughter, Gloria, who Santo is dating.
Dr. Bruno Halder (Carlos Ancira) – A mad scientist who has gone crazy with rage and unleashes monsters upon the world, because he’s a jerk or something. He doesn’t really have any motivation besides being evil. But isn’t that motivation enough?
Waldo (Santanón) – Loyal servant of Dr. Halder and also a hunchbacked little fellow, like every film needs. Famed actor Santanón is best known for being Stinky the Skunk in another Monstruos flick. Maybe not really best known, but I declare it so now.
The Mummy/La Momia (Fernando Rosales) – A very lazy mummy who is just there for most of the flick.
The Cyclops/El Ciclope (Gerardo Zepeda) – Cyclops acts like a Gillman, but with big ears! This suit is left over from La Nave de los Monstruos (Ship of Monsters). Gerardo Zepeda also played one of the three zombies/Frankenthugs. He played goons and thugs in dozens of movies, including Wrestling Women vs. the Aztec Mummy
Frankenstein/Franquestain (Manuel Leal) – Even Frankenstein (or Frankenstein’s Monster for you purists!) joins the fun of getting punched by Santo and Blue Demon! Manuel Leal played the lead evil zombie Satan in The Mummies of Guanajuato
The Wolfman/El Hombre Lobo (Vicente Lara) – The Wolfman took time off from begging for change at a highway offramp to menace Santo and Blue Demon.
El Vampiro (David Alvizu) – Even vampires are trying to get into the fun, especially vampires with big Spock ears like someone “borrowed” just that element from Nosferatu.
Sonia the Vampire Woman/La Mujer Vampiro (Elsa María Tako) – The Vampire spends his time making vampire babes like Sonia here, who always walks around in her bra and panties and also tries to seduce Santo. There is another briefly seen vampire lady named Fabiola (Yolanda Ponce) but she does nothing important.
Evil Blue Demon (Alejandro Cruz/Black Shadow) – Blue Demon is captured and replaced by an evil duplicate who does evil stuff that is evil. Until Santo kills him! Spoiler… Though the credits are a bit hazy, it is believed that Alejandro Cruz/Black Shadow played the Evil Blue Demon duplicate.
Ship of Monsters Saucer Man (???) – This Invasion of the Saucer Men-style brain alien is another refuge from from Ship of Monsters, though all he does in this film is stand around in Dr. Halder’s lab and look weird. An important job!
Will Santo and Blue Demon defeat the monsters? I’m on the edge of my seat!!!

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - November 1, 2012 at 5:06 am

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Cerebro Del Mal (Review)

Cerebro Del Mal

aka Santo contra cerebro del mal

1959
Written by Fernando Osés and Enrique Zambrano
Directed by Joselito Rodríguez

After three weeks of decorating, Santo finally got his bedroom the way he wanted it. Now to sit back and enjoy.

Before Santo el Enmascarado de Plata became the international super star that punched every monster who ever monsted, he has to start in the beginning of the movie world. Already an established wrestler, by 1952 Santo was now featured in a comic book (which ran for 35 years) and was offered a role in the serial El Enmascarado de Plata. Santo turned down the role (sources vary, but him believing the film wasn’t going to be a hit is the most common reason given.) The serial featured another actor in a silver mask (who became the villain to a white-masked wrestler hero) and was released in an edited into a movie form. But by 1958, the time was ripe for Santo to actually jump into movies himself.

If I catch that drunk Incognito passed out on the job again, he’s fired!

Cerebro Del Mal and Hombres Infernales were both filmed in Cuba in 1958 just before the revolution. They feature the same Mexican director (Joselito Rodríguez) and main cast (Santo, Joaquín Cordero, and Fernando Osés), with Cuban supporting actors and crew. Because this is an early Santo flick, it doesn’t feature many of the common lucha libre film tropes that we’ve all grown to love. Heck, Santo isn’t even the focus of the picture! The plot is more of a crime caper with science fiction elements. Santo barely talks, he’s usually called “the Masked One” by most of the bad guy crew, and both he and the other wrestler El Incognito are the best agents of the police force (while also being citizens of the world or something…) There are no shots of Santo driving around in his convertible, and Santo is even easily defeated by random thugs. Santo isn’t dating a girl, nor do any women even find him or El Incognito desirable.

Of Santo’s 52 films, these first two are the most unlike any of the others. But even still, the seeds of future efforts are planted here. Santo is a figure of justice, this time even working for the police force that will often call on him in later films. There is a mad scientist, hence the title of the film, Cerebro Del Mar. People are hypnotized/mind controlled, which happens a lot in subsequent Santo flicks. And masked people running around Mexico is not considered odd enough for anyone to make comments about it. Cerebro Del Mal is an interesting quaint film, and though it doesn’t achieve the crazed excesses of its progeny, it does hold the promise of more to come.

Breaking Bad: The Lucha Years

Santo (Santo) – Usually referred to as El Enmascarado, Santo is one of the masked police agents. He’s captured in the beginning of the film and brainwashed. He’s then rescued, and continues to play brainwashed to help bring down Dr. Campos. Santo is billed as as “Santo” el Enmascarado de Plata.
El Incognito (Fernando Osés) – Fellow masked wrestling police agent who helps save Santo and gets a bullet in the gut for his trouble. A bullet that only grazes him. In the gut. Fernando Osés would go on to costar in dozens of lucha libre and other Mexican cult cinema, usually as henchmen or goons of the main villain. He helped write the film along with fellow costar Enrique Zambrano.
Dr. Campos (Joaquín Cordero) – Mad scientist who develops the power of brainwashing and decides he’s going to do whatever he wants now, which is sort of bad because he becomes a complete jerk, kidnapping and murdering people.
Elisa (Norma Suárez) – The lovely Elisa is dating Gerardo, but she catches the eye of Dr. Campos, who sets out to kidnap her to brainwash so he can have his way with her.
Gerardo (as Alberto Inzúa) – New assistant to Dr. Campos, and boy does he have the worst boss ever! No only is Dr. Campos a super villain, but he kidnaps Gerardo’s girlfriend Elisa!
Evil scientist and Hallmark store patron!

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - October 28, 2012 at 6:32 pm

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The Mummies of Guanajuato – Infernal Brains Podcast Episode 09

The Infernal Brains are here to teach you everything you didn’t know you needed to know about Mexican Wrestling – Lucha Libre – movies and what to do when mummies start attacking your city! A framework is build around the Lucha classic The Mummies of Guanajuato, where you learn the ins and outs of Santo, Blue Demon, Mil Mascaras, and Mexican mummies. A good infodump for those of you new to the genre, and an informative trip through the film for those who are more familiar with the wonders of the Luchador.

As usual, we got a stranglehold of choices for you: downloadable mp3, embedded flash with slideshow, embedded audio player, and iTunes feed link. So many choices, you’ll cry for your mummy!

I’m sorry, that joke was awful and uncalled for. But do enjoy the podcast, which doesn’t feature that lame joke at all! We have our own lame jokes.

Download the mp3 (right click, save as)

Watch in slideshow form:

Subscribe to the Infernal Brains on YouTube!

Click the graphic for Podcast Feed:

Click here for iTunes Feed

Links
The Mummies of Guanajuato on Teleport City
The Lucha Diaries
Die, Danger, Die, Die, Kill!

Prior Infernal Brains:
Taiwanese Giant Monster Films Part 1
Taiwanese Giant Monster Films Part 2
Polly Shang Kuan
Turkish Pop Cinema Part 1
Turkish Pop Cinema Part 2
Dara Singh
Infernal Brains Podcast – 07 – Insee Daeng
Infernal Brains Podcast – 08 – Worst Podcast Ever

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - January 4, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Categories: Movie Reviews, Podcasts   Tags: , , , ,

Santo Contra la Invasion de los Marcianos (Review)


Santo Contra la Invasion de los Marcianos

aka Santo vs. the Martian Invasion

1966
Starring
Santo as El Santo
Manuel Zozaya as Prof. Ordorica
Wolf Ruvinskis as Argos
Ham Lee as Morpeo
El Nazi as Martian
Maura Monti as Aphrodite


Mexican Masked Wrestler El Santo, the Silver Mask. A Legend. Starred or was featured in 52 movies in his career. We can honestly say, this is one of them. Actually, this is pretty good for a Mexican Martian invasion movie. It fits in nicely with many low budget American science fiction films that were coming out at the time, and since it involves Martians invading Mexico, and a masked wrestler as Earth’s only hope, you know it’s more of a superhero film than anything else. In fact, El Santo had his own comic series in Mexico, and many of his films and other Luchadores Enmascarados (Masked Wrestlers) films are science fiction/horror/comic book movies at their cores. These movies can be a load of fun, or just a big load. Despite the ridiculousness of much of this movie, I enjoyed it, as it did a few things American movies rarely did back then.

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - March 19, 2005 at 12:30 am

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3 Dev Adam aka Turkish Spiderman

3 Dev Adam

aka 3 Mighty Men aka Turkish Spiderman
3 Dev Adam
1973
Starring
Aytekin Akkaya as Captain America
Yavuz Selekman as El Santo

From deep in the bowels of Turkey comes this instant winner of insanity! The Turkish film industry has an obsession with making low budget rip offs of American films, and in this case, they’ve pilfered Spiderman, and threw in Captain America, and even El Santo! Direct from bootleg tape to your computer. Subtitles? Who needs them! It’s not like this movie was long on plot anyway. Knowing what was going on would probably make it unwatchable.

3 Dev Adam
3 Dev Adam
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Posted by Tars Tarkas - August 12, 2004 at 10:03 pm

Categories: Movie Reviews, Ugly   Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

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