Baron Blood (1972)

BARON BLOOD (1972)
aka Gli orrori del castello di Norimberga
Article 3329 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 8-9-2010
Posting Date: 9-25-2010
Directed by Mario Bava
Featuring Joseph Cotten, Elke Sommer, Massimo Girotti
Country: West Germany / Italy
What it is: Evil comes back from the grave

An American arrives in Austria to learn about his heritage, especially concerning an evil ancestor who tortured the local villagers. He ends up reviving the evil Baron, but finds him easier to conjure up than to get rid of…

It’s seems as if it’s been quite a while since I’ve covered a Mario Bava movie. I remember seeing this one as a kid, and it really didn’t do much for me back then. Having seen it again, I’m afraid I still feel the same way. Bava is a creative director, all right, and there are moments where the wonderful cinematography and the exquisite use of light bring the movie to life, especially in a scene where the Baron chases a woman (Elke Sommer) through the streets of the town. Unfortunately, I’m just not impressed with the script, which is by turns cliched, banal and muddled. The performances also do not impress me, though I’m sure in some cases that may be due to the dubbing. I’m particularly disappointed with Joseph Cotten’s performance as the mysterious man who buys the castle; it seems self-consciously eccentric, and not in a fun way. In the end, the movie just doesn’t make much impact on me. It’s not awful, mind you, but I think it’s far from Bava’s best.

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