LA MARCA DE SATANAS (1957)
aka The Mark of Satan
Article 5185 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Chano Urueta
Featuring Luis Aguilar, Flor Silvestre, Jaime Fernandez
What it is: Mexican Weird Western
A singing cowboy and his comic-relief nearly-deaf sidekick try to solve the mystery of a house where an axe murder took place twelve months ago.
Don’t let the title fool you; it’s not a movie about devil worshipers. It’s a Mexican weird western, and the fantastic intent includes an an axe murderer dressed in black from head to toe, a couple of bloody deaths, an axe that seems to move around of its own accord, a ghost, a zombie, and a walking headless cowboy. It’s apparently the third part of a four movie series involving the cowboy and his sidekick; I’ve seen the fourth part, LA CABEZA DE PANCHO VILLA, and couldn’t make heads or tails out of it due to the lack of English subtitles. This one does have subtitles, but the plot is more than a bit confusing, the supernatural content is all explained away (though the explanations don’t match the visuals from earlier in the movie), and most of the humorous content revolves around the comic sidekick not hearing things well or trying to clean out his ears. It’s pretty silly, but it does hit a good spooky vibe at times, and there’s a goofy charm to the proceedings that makes me like it despite its flaws. Of course, the movie stops in its tracks several times to make room for musical numbers.