Wednesday, December 2, 2009

RIP Paul Naschy, Wolf of Spain

Paul Naschy died yesterday, and I will miss him.

Naschy-- born Jacinto Molina in Madrid, was a weightlifter and trained architect who suddenly in the late 60s began directing and starring in horror films-- usually about the melancholy, aristocratic werewolf Waldemar Daninsky. Personally I consider these movies the pinnacle of 60s and 70s euro-horror, without irony, often dreamy and lusty. In the US we see these movies in washed-out, often heavily oxygen-damaged prints, and the dubbing is absurd, and all of this contributes to the sense of other-worldliness Naschy's work projected.

None of this is high art, and yet movies like Werewolf Versus Vampire Woman are full of vigor and occasionally marked by amazing images.

I admired Paul Naschy for his body of work and his tenacity. He did what the heck he wanted. Viva El Hombre Lobo.

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