Terror, Sex and Witchcraft – Mexico, 1984

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Originally filmed as Cautivo del más allá (“Captive of the Beyond”) by Rafael Portillo (The Aztec Mummy) from a script by Fernando Cortés (El fantasma de la opereta), this was an ultra-obscure 1968 Mexican horror-crime film that was laden with courtroom ‘drama’ and supernatural elements.

In 1984 is was revamped with new footage as Terror, sexo y brujería (“Terror, Sex and Witchcraft”) to add more horror elements. The sorcery, passion and undead elements involved seemingly weren’t enough for some VHS distributors, so the producers added in a crime angle and retitled the results as Narco Satánico, possibly in an attempt to cash-in on Scarface, a big hit at the time.

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Plot:

Vicky loves Ricardo, but Ricardo loves Barbara. So, Vicky visits a gypsy witch who convinces her she must make a pact with Satan in order to cast an effective love spell on Ricardo.

After Vicky gives her body and soul to the Dark One, she engages with Ricardo in a passionate night of lovemaking that is cut short by Satan, who, sensing that Ricardo has not completely fallen under the spell, orders Vicky to kill him.

Following Ricardo’s death, his brother Carlos is haunted by nightmares of the dead sibling, who appears and takes possession of Carlos in order to get his revenge…

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Review:

There’s brief flesh shots, a bloody knife-through-the-neck, a distorted sampling of Vincent Price laughing maniacally (filched from Michael Jackson’s Thriller video), a graveyard resurrection replete with pasty-faced zombies (and, later, some sloppier-than-sloppy entrail-ripping), an embarrassingly awful nightclub dance sequence featuring Macumba Vicky shaking her hair a lot and a courtroom hypnosis that features subliminal eyeballs, recalling Patrick Lives Again. It sounds like trash heaven. Alas, it’s sadly not.

Beyond the obviously jarring juxtapositions between the original 60’s footage and the additional 80’s scenes this seems to have been something of a botch job to start with. There’s a whiff of jazz-tinged Jess Franco necroticism, plus Coffin Joe chainsaw editing, in this messy Mexsploitation offering that has remained obscure for good reason. Unfortunately, it’s not enough to make the combination of unconnected scenes more than a mere curiosity for seekers of unseen oddball cinematic splicing.

Adrian J Smith, Horrorpedia

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