Aug 14, 2020

The Book of Stone (1969)

(Original Title: El libro de piedra) A Gothic horror tale from Mexico.

 Julia Septién (Marga López) has applied for the position of governess for Eugenio Ruvalcaba (Joaquín Cordero)

Silvia (Lucy Buj) meets her governess for the first time.  She's a troubled girl, and Julia will have a time earning her trust.

Mariana (Norma Lazareno) is the stepmother whose been unable to bond with the weird child.

Silvia has an imaginary friend named Hugu; and he's connected to this creepy statue in the forest.

Julia tells Eugenio and Mariana of Silvia's unusual connection to the imaginary Hugo.

Julia takes Silvia to an ancient ruin, but then loses sight of her.

She has to climb along the rooftops in her high-heels; this actually looked dangerous.

Of course the house servants know the deal; but everyone as per usual brushes them off as superstitious folk.

Weird things keep happening; Mariana falls down the stairs, spraining her leg, strange noises in the night, a creepy doll hanging from a noose.

At one point they swear the statue is gone; with only its pedestal remaining.  But then it returns.

Mariana can't fucking deal with this shit.  There's a mysterious fatal car wreck as well - leading them all to endlessly debate and argue about what's going on.

Mariana is awaken by noises in the night.

She comes face to face with the creepy-as-fucking-shit Hugo.

Eugenio finds Mariana dead, face down in the pond.

Eugenio has just about had it.  He asks Silvia what the fuck happened, and the girl says it was Hugo.

Eugenio takes an ax to the statue.

Later, Julia and Eugenio visit the statue and they find something's changed...

It's now a statue of Silvia. THE END

Superbly acted, expertly filmed, and a genuinely haunting story.  This is how gothic horror should be done.  However, I will say, there are a lot of boring scenes of just talking and talking and talking...  if you can hang with that, this is a banger for fans of the genre.

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