HIDDEN HORROR FOR HALLOWEEN – the Hunchback of the Morgue

hunchback_of_morgue_poster_01IT IS FINALLY HERE HORRORFIENDS! OCTOBER IS HERE and the official start of the Halloween season! and what better way to start off the season then to share with you my dear horrorfiends a gothic and gory spanish movie from the 1970s starring the Spanish vincent price…PAUL NASCHY. Now this little gothic gruefest is THE HUNCHBACK OF THE MORGUE

from imdb: Paul Naschy plays a hunchback with below average intelligence who works at the morgue. He is in love with a sickly girl who happens to be the only person who is kind to him. Each day he brings her flowers until the day she dies. He never really accepts her death and believes she is just sleeping. The girl eventually ends up at the morgue where she is being prepared for burial. The Hunchback flips into a rage at the desecration of the girls body and stabs and decapitates the men. The police begin to look for him. This is when the Hunchback meets up with a mad scientist who’s work isn’t accepted by the general society. The scientist promises the Hunchback that he would re-animate the girl’s body if the Hunchback brings him fresh bodyparts from the graveyard and live victims. He uses the parts to create a monster in his Dungeon laboratory.

Now i know many horror fans are big fans of Italian horror cinema with the muddy look of there monsters, surreal setpieces and extreme gore. But what if I were to tell you that Spain was cranking out incredibly gothic and incredibly gory horror films before Italy was..shocked right. Believe me i was too when i discovered this lost and soon discovered Spainiard horror films of the 1970s. They are filled with Gothic atmosphere, naked girls and extreme gorey death scenes that rival the gore of Italy. And all of that rings true with HUNCHBACK OF THE MORGUE!

The think the best way to describe this film is imagine the gothic atmosphere of a Hammer horror film combined with the charming hokeyness of universal monsters and the extreme gore of early 80s Italian horror films. Its as if the filmmakers took everything they love and throw it in and damn does it show. The film is filled with a sympathetic character in the hunchback, hokey dialogue, a depressing romantic subplot, graverobbing by foggy moonlight, old dungeons and torture chambers filled with bats and rats, A frankenstein like mad scientist using body parts to create some hideous monster that grows in a jar with body horror style special effects that are reminiscent of early Cronenberg films and plenty of gory death scenes which include decapitations, eviscerations with guts falling out, faces melted off with Acid, bloody death by iron maiden and faces being eaten by rats and those rats being set on fire by the hunchback ( you can tell they really did set the rats on fire on set) and finally a Monster created by the mad scientist that constantly screams in pain and looks like a two legged walking piece of slime.

Seriously if you are the slightest fan of the Italian horror films of Argento or Fulci or even the gothic horror films from British studio HAMMER, then start of this Halloween season right and seek out THE HUNCHBACK OF THE MORGUE. It is a gothic n gruesome entertaining good time – James J. Coker

 

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