Dr. Jekyll y el Hombre Lobo (1972)

aka Dr. Jekyll and the Werewolf
Article 3345 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 8-27-2010
Posting Date: 10-11-2010
Directed by Leon Klimovsky
Featuring Paul Naschy, Shirley Corrigan, Jack Taylor
Country: Spain
What it is: Monster mash

When an English couple visits Transylvania, the husband is killed by thugs, but the wife is saved by Waldemar Daninsky. She takes him to England to cure him of his lycanthropy… to a certain Dr. Jekyll.

It’s a good thing Paul Naschy’s sincere love of the classic monsters counts for a lot; otherwise, there wouldn’t be a lot to recommend in this somewhat stolid and muddled compendium of horror cliches mixed with bizarre plot elements and an eye towards exploitation. Some of the plot elements are real head-scratchers; if someone out there can logically explain why turning Waldemar into Mr. Hyde will cure him of his lycanthropy, I’d love to hear it. As usual, Naschy gets to play both hero and monster, with the real villains of the movie being some boorish villagers and Dr. Jekyll’s insanely jealous (and just plain insane) girlfriend. Still, some good ideas pop up; I like the concept that one of the rampages occurs because Waldemar is caught in a malfunctioning elevator for a long period of time. Still, I’m willing to bet the original language version is better than the dubbed one I’ve seen. Leon Klimovsky’s direction is pretty pedestrian, but I will have to admit having been totally blindsided by an unexpectedly arty transformation sequence near the end of the movie. This is not one of the better Waldemar Daninsky movies, but it’s not the worst either.

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