La Herencia Valdemar
The Heredity Valdemar
The Valdemar Legacy
Ínigo Marco for La Cruzada Entertainment
directed by José Luis Alemán
starring Daniele Liotti, Laia Marull, Francisco Maestre, Paul Naschy, Silvia Abascal, Óscar Jaenada, Rodolfo Sancho, Ana Risueno, Norma Ruíz, Santi Prego, José Luis Torrijo, Jesús Olmedo, Vanessa Suarez, Laura Toledo, Lino Braxe, Jimmy Barnatán, Ana Bullón, Lucas Trapaza, Luis García, Soraya Padrao, Ignacio García-Bustelo, Amaia Garmendia, Eusebio Poncela, Luis Zahera, Txema Pérez
written by José Luis Alemán, based on concepts by H.P. Lovecraft, music by Arnau Bataller, visual effects by Luis Tinoco, Onirikal Studio
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After not one but two valuers have vanished while evaluating the
inventory of the Valdemar mansion, their boss (Eusebio Poncela) hires
private eye Nicolas (Oscar Jaenada) to handle the case, who in turn hooks
up with Luisa Llorente (Silvia Abascal), who unveils to him the dark past
of the Valdemar estate:
In the 19th century, Lazaro Valdemar (Daniele
Liotti) and his wife Leonor (Laia Marull) run a n orphanage at the
mansion, since they love kids but can't have any of their own. Then Lazaro
gets into photography, discovers double exposure as such, and the
possibilities that come with it. So he and his wife start to hold séances
for rich costumers, at the climax of which Lazaro always takes a photo
that when developed shows a ghost - which is a simple double-exposure
trick of course. The two don't see themselves as frauds though, as they
are doing it merely for the good of their children. Then though, at a
séance, a journalist discovers their foul play, and after he fails to
succeed at blackmailing the Valdemars, he exposes them - which leads to
Lazaro being sent to jail.
Enter mysterious Aleister Crowley (Francisco
Maestre), who has no problems getting Lazaro out of jail - but in return
he insists that Lazaro is to attend one of his séances, basically because
he believes Lazaro to have been in contact with the other side.
Sure, the Valdemars séances were poppycock, but in Lazaro's fake ghost
photographs, there is some evidence of a real ghost.
unfortunately gets terribly out of hand, since he opens the door to the
other side to a dangerous demon nobody, least of all Lazaro, can control,
a demon he unleashes onto the world ... and basically it's because not
Lazaro but his wife Leonor was the actual m,edium of the two.
Paul Naschy, in one of his last films, plays the loyal Valdemars' servant.
afraid to say this is quite simply a pretty boring film, and the problem
is that it sets up a ton of characters in the first 20 or so minutes,
characters that are not even all that interesting in themselves, then
veers off into the 18th century-narrative that paints a very complex story
inan embarrassingly simplistic light and doesn't feature much in terms of
tension or suspense until the finale. And what, you may ask, happens to
all the characters set up in the first 20 minutes? Well, the end credits
tell us to watch out for the sequel ...