El Jorobado de la Morgue
Hunchback of the Morgue
Stunde der Grausamen Leichen / The Hunchback of Rue Morgue / Rue Morgue Massacres
Eva Film, Janus Films
directed by Javier Aguirre
starring Paul Naschy, Alberto Dalbés, Rosanna Yanni, Víctor Alcázar, María Elena Arpón (as Helen Harp), Maria Perschy, Manuel de Blas, Antonio Pica, Joaquín Rodríguez Kinito, Adolfo Thous, Ángel Menéndez, Fernando Sotuela, Antonio Ramis, Alfonso de la Vega, Sofía Casares, Antonio Mayans, Susan Taff, José Luis Chinchilla, Richard Santis, Iris André, Ingrid Rabel, Blaki, Susana Latour, Dani Card, Saturno Cerra, Júlio Martín, Victoria Ayllón
story by Paul Naschy (as Jacinto Molina), screenplay by Paul Naschy (as Jacinto Molina), Javier Aguirre, Alberto S.Insúa, music by Carmelo A.Bernaola, special effects by Pablo Pérez
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Hunchback Gotho (Paul Naschy), who works at the local morgue, is
basically the center of ridicule and humiliation in the small Austrian
village he lives in - only Ilsa (María Elena Arkón) has always
sympathized with him, but now Ilsa has died, and Gotho steals his corpse
from the morgue, even if that means killing two morgue employees, and
hides her in the local catacombs ... where before long, rats begin gnawing
Gotho is desperate to bring Ilsa back to live though, so he
turns to Doctor Horla (Alberto Dalbés) for help ... and wouldn't cou know
it, Doc Horla agrees to help him, since he always wanted to bring the dead
back to life, and he not only helps Gotho evade the police (after all, he
is now a wanted murderer and corpse-robber), he also builds himself a lab
complete with acid pit in a torture dungeon adjacent to the catacombs.
seems to go into pieces though when Horla's graverobbers throw Ilsa's
corpse into the acid pit because of her stench, which prompts Gotho to
throw the trio after her ... ouch. Then Gotho, a kind creature at heart,
wants to give himself up to the police, but Doc Horla promises him to
build him a new Ilsa if he stays and helps.
Together with his assistant
Tauchner (Víctor Alcázar), Horla has soon built a creature from
protoplasm, and tries to feed it corpses to assume human shape ... but the
corpses won't do, so he makes Gotho kidnap girls from the local women's
prison, to feed the creature with live specimen. Tauchner soon opposes the
doctor's move, so does Tauchner's girlfreind Frieda (Maria Perschy), head
of the prison in question, but for Horla, his experiments go above
everything, so he throws them in a cell conveniently attached to his
Gotho continues to do the doctor's bidding, but
then he finds love in Elke (Rosanna Yanni), the one woman who, just like
Elke, is able to see him as a gentle creature, and she actually falls in
love and has sex with him ... even though she's pretty sure he has killed
all the people he's accused of. Then one day though, she secretly follows
him into the catacombs and gets caught. But when the doctor tells Gotho to
feed her to his creature as well, Gotho rebels, sets free Tauchner and
Frieda and sends Elke to freedom with them before having a showdown with
the doctor, one in which the doctor's creature also joins in ... and to
noone's real surprise, all three end up in the acid pit.
at its trashiest best: The whole story doesn't make too much actual sense
and seems to be little more than a collection of horror clichés chosen
from a textbook rather by chance, but then the story is a perfect hanger
for quite a bit of sex and shocks, the special effects are under-budgeted
and crude, but all the more effective in their crudeness, and the
authentic Austrian backdrops give the film an almost irresistible
atmosphere at times.
Now of course, if you take a film like this too
seriously, you will just find the film silly low budget fare, but if
you're a true trash enthusiast, you'll love it for the very same reason.