BLOODY PIT OF HORROR (1965) – The Dungeon Review!
Bloody Pit of Horror only garnered a 3/5 rating but it is so cheerfully insane I felt it positively screamed for a review! Bloody Pit of Horror is light on story, the gore is crappy (what there is of it), and then there is the performances; more accurately there is Mickey Hargitay’s performance! Such utterly unrestrained orgasmic vitamin B Goodness!
Travis Anderson is a former actor, now a recluse misanthrope living in a castle formerly belonging to a sadistic executioner. The former resident known as the Crimson Executioner was himself executed by one of his own torture devices and remains sealed inside the contraption in the castle’s dungeon. A photographer along with a group of models break into the castle for a shoot thinking it abandoned. They soon meet their inhospitable host who initially insists they leave immediately. After Travis gets a glimpse of one of the lovely ladies he agrees to let the group spend the night, but forbids them to enter the dungeon. The photographer and company head for the forbidden dungeon post-haste which inevitably results in their demise.
Bloody Pit of Horror opens with a quote from the Marquis de Sade “My vengeance needs blood.” Then we meet the Crimson Executioner while being locked inside a closet full of spikes which comes complete with a peek-a-boo window so you can watch your victim die! The Executioner promises to get his revenge before he shuffles off this mortal coil. And the voiceover warns “Let no man dare break the seal!” Once the unwelcomed house guests wander down to the dungeon it takes no time at all before the seal inadvertently becomes dislodged. All it took was an axe mounted on a wall to get knocked and presto! It is pretty amazing that it managed to stay sealed since 1648 (as per the introductory voice over). I wonder what sort of commission the real estate agent got for selling a castle complete with infamous executioner locked in fully furnished torture chamber?! It is possible that Travis Anderson was already under the influence of the Crimson Executioner but shit starts to hit the fan following the event.
The scantily clad models and their male counterparts are not the sharpest lot. To mix things up a bit they include Edith, the one conservative woman in the group who was not employed as a model. She even had a history with Travis when he was a gamefully employed actor. Rick represents for the male side and is the film’s hero. He reminded me of Joe Pesci for some reason and plays the part straight up serious. It was difficult to take anything about this film seriously, but he wasn’t too bad. There is a scene where he is forced to pull himself along on his belly under a spider web booby-trap. The scene goes on forever, and might have even been intense if the rest of it wasn’t so freaking funny! The crazy spider web booby-trap was quite the sight! Each thread in the web is connected to a mounted arrow that threatens release with even the lightest touch; the lovely Kinojo caught in the centre of the web with a big clunky mechanical poisonous spider coming ever closer! The cast are pretty incidental as it is Mickey Hargitay who gives what may well be the single most outrageously deranged, hysterically funny performances I have seen from a villain! At one point he has a trio of women in torture devices and runs from one to the other with the enthusiasm of a kid at Christmas who can’t decide which present to open first! They give him some absolutely incredible lines which beg to be heard. The best scene comes when Travis now completely possessed by the evil spirit of the Crimson Executioner has a candid conversation with his one time love Edith. He stands in front of a mirror oiling up his manly bare chest as he speaks of inferior humans who threaten to compromise his perfect body! This scene alone is worth the price of the DVD! And it gets better! He dons bright red tights, a Zorro-like mask, a nice red hood and of course a big tacky old medallion to adorn that well-oiled manly chest! I literally had tears in my eyes from laughing and had to pause the DVD twice! I would be amiss if I didn’t mentioned the Batman-esque identically dressed henchmen. Wow! 1000 times wow!
The castle is super cool and the torture devices are pretty damn creative. Too bad the gore they include is so incredibly crappy because the torture devices were diabolically inspired! The props and set pieces were actually quite impressive for a cheapo film. A significant amount of people die and a few are tortured to death but none of it is even remotely terrifying. Bloody Pit of Horror is so damn campy it is impossible to take any aspect of the film seriously. Technically speaking Bloody Pit of Horror has a weak plot and a dumb story, hilariously bad acting, insanely goofy dialog and crummy effects but there is part of me that wants to give this film a 5/5!! If for no other reason you must visit Bloody Pit of Horror for Mickey Hargitay’s Crimson Executioner; one of the most side-splittingly, insanely-zealous, crazed villains of all time! For fans of camplicious eurotrash Bloody Pit of Horror is highly recommended, for anyone else, enter at your own risk.
Dungeon Rating: 3/5
Directed By: Massimo Pupillo
Starring: Mickey Hargitay, Walter Brandi, Luisa Baratto, Rita Klein, Alfredo Rizzo, Barbara Nelli, Moa Tahi, Femi Benussi, Ralph Zucker, Nando Angelini