After putting it off for months we finally take aim at one of Naschy’s best known and most beloved Waldemar Daninsky tales. Mostly seen in the US on television under its alternate title of THE WEREWOLF VS THE VAMPIRE WOMEN it’s a film near and dear to fans for its sexy bloodsuckers as well as its monster battle. It sports the usual mix of romantic angst, tragic fate, and gory throat ripping violence all whipped together into a heady, unique creature feature that could only have been produced in the swinging 70s. While far from perfect it has more than enough horror entertainment value to keep most anyone staring at the screen – often in amazement and sometimes in complete confusion. But as with most Naschy scripts the story does eventually make a sort of mad sense and this scary suspense tale finds multiple ways to satisfy its audience.
This was the first time Naschy worked with director Leon Klimovsky and his skill makes WEREWOLF SHADOW a truly mesmerizing visual effort. He’s able to craft a fantastic dreamlike/nightmarish feel to many sequences that give the entire film a haunting quality. The cast is strong and the lovely ladies are very good but I’m really surprised old Waldemar only manages to sleep with one of them. It’s like he wasn’t even trying! The same can’t be said of his acting performance, though. Naschy is very good throughout with his ability to emote getting better and better as he learned his craft on the job. His earnest work here points toward the great work he would do over the course of the next few years.
Among the astonishing things we learn in this episode is that there is more than one way to kill a vampire; that neck meat is the tastiest kind of meat; that mini-skirted women roam the French woodlands at all hours of the night; that full moons don’t necessarily come in threes and for some reason Satan fears werewolves.
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