La senora muerte (1969)

aka Lady Death, Madam Death
Article 2761 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 11-28-2008
Posting Date: 3-5-2009
Directed by Jaime Salvador
Featuring John Carradine, Regina Torne, Elsa Cardenas
Country: Mexico

A deformed woman must kill young women for their blood so that a mad scientist can make her beautiful again.

I watched this one in Spanish without subtitles. I can’t say it was undubbed, though; you’ll see John Carradine’s face, but that’s not his voice issuing from it. So, what kind of horror movie would John Carradine make in Mexico? Well, from what I can tell, it’s no better than the ones he was making elsewhere at the time; this one looks pretty bad. It’s something of a cross between ATOM AGE VAMPIRE and BLOOD AND BLACK LACE; the deformed woman works at a fashion agency, so there’s lots of pretty models around for her to stalk. Unfortunately, as a side effect to this, the movie is heavily padded with fashion show footage; there’s at least two extended sequences of models walking by in the latest styles in front of appreciative audiences, and these scenes do nothing but bring the action (such as it is) to a screeching halt. John Carradine has a mute hunchbacked assistant who bears a certain resemblance to Bud Cort; in the most “touching” sequence of the movie, the assistant tries to make up for the accidental destruction of a bottle of beautiful woman’s blood during his attempted rape of the woman (during one of her beautiful phases) by showing up with a bottle of his own blood in exchange. Let’s face it; if your doctor is John Carradine, you’ve had it, especially if you find his disembodied head appearing to you in your mind urging you to kill. By the way, the doctor’s computer is one of the sillier giant props I’ve seen in a horror movie.


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