Aug 6, 2020

Horror from the Tomb (1973)

A Paul Naschy flick about a warlock and his wife who return from the dead and wreak havoc on a two couples staying at their medieval estate.

 A stark landscape in the 15th century.

 Alaric de Marnac (Paul Naschy) is being condemned as a warlock and his wife Mabille De Lancré (Helga Liné) is also sentenced to death.

She's hung upside down nude and killed; Alaric de Marnac is beheaded.

Present day 1973, we meet two couples.

Hugo de Marnac (also played by Paul Naschy) and Silvie (Betsabé Ruiz

Maurice Roland (Víctor Barrera) and Paula (Cristina Suriani)

Paula has the lousy idea to hold a seance to speak with Alaric de Marnac

Unfortunately for them, it works.

Maurice is haunted by thoughts of Alaric de Marnac who was beheaded.

The couples pursue their interest and visit the Alaric de Marnac estate.

Elvire (Emma Cohen) is a servant at the estate.

That evening, Elvire and Chantal (María José Cantudo) are traumatized by the sight of the murder of Elvire's father.

There's a legend that Alaric's remains are buried on the estate.  They foolishly go look.

A chest if found, which will later be revealed to contain Alaric's head.

Maurice starts to fall under the demonic spell of Alaric.

Chantal (María José Cantudo) is working in the kitchen when she is murdered by a man possessed by Alaric.

The sight of a woman in sheer nightgown carrying a candle down haunted hallways is perhaps the most iconic visual used for gothic tales. We've seen it a million times.

They find the murdered body of Chantal  

Hugo supports the traumatized Elvire

Possessed Maurice comes for Silvie (Betsabé Ruiz)


A very long scene with another iconic image in horror of the woman carried by the "monster"

Paula leads the way to the dungeon.

There we find the animated head of Alaric.

The head is placed on his body, and Alaric is reborn.

Silvie (Betsabé Ruiz) is tied up and killed by Maurice.

Alaric examines the remains of Mabille

Silvie is placed on top of her remains, which restores Mabille to life.  Actress Betsabé Ruiz provides FFN for this scene.

Mabille is alive.

Two greats of Spanish exploitation cinema: Paul Naschy and Helga Liné; it doesn't get much better than this.

 Mabille De Lancré appears in the bedroom of a local man.

Helga Liné provides FFN for this scene.

Alaric also appears in a local's bedroom.

The girl (Esther Santana) is hypnotized then killed.

Next, Alaric goes for Elvire...

Elvire is protected by a sacred talisman around her neck.

Alaric has to flee.  A great nude scene from Emma Cohen, the former Big Bird on Spanish Sesame Street.

Hugo and Elvire hear footsteps approaching.

It's Silvie, Elvire's father and others who are now zombies!

Hugo is able to fend them off with fire.

Mabille has a plan to use Paula to get at Hugo and Elvire.

When Paula fails, Mabille kills her.

Mabille is killed by Elvire; Alaric is also destroyed.

It ends on a sad note, with Elvire finding the body of Paula and the others, all dead.

Elvire is the lone survivor. THE END

We rarely dole out 10/10 stars, but this fucking rules.  Naschy has done so many great horror flicks, and here he hits perfection.  Naschy flicks had a tendency to get campy, but with Horror from the Tomb, it's all played straight.  It provides endless surprises and fun horror elements which could have been taken straight out of a mid-century horror comic book. Indeed, it had that "look" of an EC comic, or even a Basil Gogos FMOF cover, really evoking that lurid look of vintage horror.  Add to all this, plentiful nudity, with Emma Cohen and Helga Liné, and you have yourself a banger.  I suspect this film doesn't get as much love as other Naschy flicks as it doesn't have a werewolf, Jekyll and Hyde, a vampire, or other traditional monsters. 


1 comment:

  1. This was the first Naschy film I saw; I didn't know much about him and was just getting into Spanish horror (as a widening of my gialli passion). By the time the end credits rolled I was all "Paul Naschy -- f&%k yeah!" and started seeking out his other films. I've tried to find more Emma Cohen movies as well, but I don't think a lot of her filmography is as easy to acquire as that of Naschy. It's sort of the bane of Euro-horror fans -- I'm grateful there are so many DVD/Blu-rays out there, but I'm always finding titles that need the Arrow/Mondo Macabro/etc. treatment.