Young Countess Janice (Dyanik Zurakowska) and young law student Rudolph
(Manuel Manzaneque) seem to be made for each other - at least their
fathers think that way. Janice begs to differ, she falls in love with
mysterious Polish Count Waldemar Daninsky (Paul Naschy), who seems to be
the only local to not be afraid of the Wolfstein castle, an abandoned
castle that seems to hold a dark secret.
Enter two gipsies (Rosanna
Yanni, Gualberto Galbán), who take abode in the castle, ignorant of the
rumours surrounding it. They enter the crypt, find a skeleton that seems
to have been stabbed by a silver dagger, remove the silver dagger - and
reanimate a werewolf who has been rotting here for years, but now that
he's alive once more, he goes on a killing spree, starting with the
Rudolph is more than a little dismayed about Waldemar stealing
Janice, but then Waldemar saves Rudolph from a werewolf attack and stabs
the werewolf with a silver dagger - but the werewolf is able to bite him
first. So now Waldemar is a werewolf (every full moon that is), but
Rudolph takes it upon himself to help Waldemar. Soon, the two are joined
by Janice as well. Eventually, the three of them find out about a doctor
who might be able to save Waldemar without killing him ... and thus, enter
Doctor Janos (Julián Ugarte) and his wife Wandessa (Aurora de Alba),
alleged werewolf specialists. What their CV forgets to mention though is
that they are also vampires, and they are quick to chain up Waldemar then
bring both Janice and Rudolph under their power.
Of course, once
Waldemar turns into a werewolf, chains can no longer hold him, and he
breaks free and fights and kills another werewolf, then, in his human
form, he fetches the dads of Janice and Rudolph, to save their kids, and
he manages to stake vampires Janos and Wandessa before turning into a
werewolf once more, at which point Janice, Rudolph and their dads can't
help themselves anymore but to shoot him with a silver bullet.
Naschy's first appearance as Hombre Lobo is ... fun. It's
not more than that, no genre masterpiece, not iconic, and Naschy proves to
be not much of an actor (yet, he would get better over the years). Plus,
the film's script is rather silly and full of pulp clichés rather than in
the least bit original. but then again, the film is carried by an
atmospheric directorial effort, is very well-paced and fuels the
werewolf-subgenre with way more romance than previously known.
does not make the film a masterpiece, but fun to watch nevertheless, and
that still accounts for something at least in my book.