PURE TERROR MONTH: The Vampires Night Orgy (1972)

About the Author: You can read the music and film criticisms of R.D Francis on Medium and learn more about his rock ‘n’ roll biographies, along with horror and sci-fi novellas, on Facebook. He also writes for B&S Movies.

Vampires, cannibalism, graveyards, nudity, and gore. Oh, my!
Vampires, cannibalism, graveyards, nudity, and gore. Oh, my!
I’m confused. What’s going on? Who is that? Oh, my!
Why is there no apostrophe before the “s” my dear, Dorothy?
Because there’s more than one vampire, can’t you see?
So, doesn’t the “Night Orgy” belong to the vampires many;
There should be an apostrophe after the “s” I do believe.
You’re over analyzing the film, R.D;
Just turn your neck so I can feed, as
Punctuation lessons are not part of my blood cult’s creed.
I know, Helga, my dear;

You’re sick and tired of my pseudo Dr. Seuss poetry.
Yes, R.D, you are a dumbass film dweeb.
I’ll shut my mouth;
Click your heels, dear Helga;

Let’s slop across this bloody brick road.
We’re off to see the Blood Countess . . .
The wonderful Blood Countess of the Night Orgy Oz!

Now we’re talking. A film with the words “Vampires” and “Orgy” and a Paul Naschy connection! Look at that DVD cover. You got two semi-breast shots. You got one hot vamp-babe carrying a woman and another vamp-babe goin’ down on a guy’s neck!

Is this one of those rare occasions when the cheesy art work lives up to the film? Eh, sort of. It depends on which cut of the film you’re seeing. You know how it goes with American TV and video distributors: they never want us Euro-horror lovin’ horndogs have any fun!

The Naschy connection comes in two forms: First, we have heart-melting Belgian actress Dyanik Zurakowska from his Mark of the Wolfman (1968) and The Hanging Woman (1973) as a vamp-victim (she’s starred in 40 films, so you better get to a-rentin’!). Then we have Naschy’s long-time collaborator, León Klimovsky, who directs this dripping-with-atmosphere tale.

And that’s not all! Look at this cast!

We’ve got two Juan Logar alumni: American expatriate actor Jack Taylor of Autopsia (1973) and Jose Guardiola of Transplant of a Brain (1970).

Then we’ve got Maria Jose Cantudo of Paul Naschy’s Horror Rises from the Tomb (1973), Amando de Ossorio’s “Blind Dead” sequel, The Ghost Galleon (1974), Jess Franco’s Count Dracula (1970; with Christopher Lee, Klaus Kinksi and Herbert Lom), and Klimovsky and Naschy’s Universal tribute, Dr. Jekyll vs. The Woflman (1972). Maria also went full frontal in Franco’s hardcore-porn vamp-romp, Bare Breasted Countess (1975).

And there’s Luis Ciges of Naschy and Carlos Aured’s Blue Eyes of the Broken Doll (1974) and Horror Rises from the Tomb, along with Klimovsky and Naschy’s Vengenance of the Zombies (1973). Along with Helga Liné, Ciges was also in Klimovsky’s The Dracula Saga (1973).

Rounding out the cast is Manual de Blas of The Ghost Galleon and Paul Naschy’s Hunchback of the Morgue (1973), along with Charo Soriano from The Garden of Delights (1970), and Fernando Bilbao from de Ossorio’s Fangs of the Living Dead (1968) and Franco’s Dracula, Prisoner of Frankenstein (1972).

And . . . sigh! Dear Lord, be still my heart and hold steady my tender loins as the star of this Spanish vamp festival is Helga Liné (Eugenio Martin’s Horror Express; 1972) as the rich bitch blood countess-vampire queen of the hive. (I’m bending my head to expose my neck now, Helga!)

And with this cast—led by Helga—who needs continuity or logic?

As is the case with most Spanish horror films of the period: Two versions of La orgía nocturna de los vampires were shot: one with actors clothed and one with nudity. The clothed version was mostly for Spanish distribution while the nude version played in the rest of Europe—and the clothed ones (with more edit-killing continuity) ended up on U.S TV in the ‘70s and VHS video in the ‘80s—and appears in this Mill Creek cut (and most of the econo-friendly box sets).

Regardless of the “orgy” and the implied “gore,” there isn’t much gore and the nudity is only in three scenes—and the “orgies” are so-so. When the gore comes, it’s effective; but what The Vampires Night Orgy does have, as do all of the what-the-fuck-is-going-on shenanigans of Spanish horror films: lots of atmosphere.

And not a lot of sense: The “churchless” town is deserted, but there plenty of clean beds and the booze flows plentiful at the local tavern. But it’s the “afterworld” and the devil or a connected blood countess can make “things appear,” right? And while there’s booze, there no meat to serve the tourists to keep ‘em fat and happy. So the vamps hospitality-string along any stranded tourists that happen by, suck them dry, serve the leftovers to the survivors, then suck another one, etc., and so one. And Helga gets first choice: always. In one scene: she plugs a horn dog, sucks ‘em, then tosses the meat out the second floor window to the fanged hoards below. (Bitch be crazy! Helga I’m ready for my window toss!)

To place this film into a contemporary context with a film you’ve more likely heard of or seen: 30 Days of Night, only with its vampire town in the Carpathian Mountains run by Helga as a bus load of six tourists take the obligatory “wrong turn” and end up in the uninhabited town of Tonia, Transylvania—where the vamps are more cannibals than vamps and attack in Lucio Fulci-style, zombie wolf packs. And that pack is in full force when Jack Taylor (Luis) and Dyanik Zurakowska (Alma) barley make it out with their blood intact in an escape-by-chased car scenario. When they arrive safely in Bojoni, the town of their original destination before their detour, the superstitious townspeople pull the ‘ol Hershell Gordon Lewis Two Thousand Maniacs dues ex machina on them: there is no such town. Huh? So the vamps weren’t “vamps,” they were the ghost of vamps? Denied! What the fuck is going on here!

Eh, screw continuity. Screw logic. Screw the perpetual stupidity of the tourists. People are vanishing and dying, yet the little daughter of one is allowed to prance in the mountains and run in a graveyard with a ghost boy? Screw it. Screw the dubbing that rivals the worst in Asian cinema. Screw it. Follow the Red Brick Road to Madrid . . . Helga Liné is at the end of the line.

She’s the Wicked Witch of My West and so help me god, trust me, you’ll enjoy every bite. It’s a wonderful Spanish Oz.

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