ARROW BOX SET RELEASE: Gothic Fantastico: The Blancheville Monster (1963)

EDITOR’S NOTE: You can also check out this review by Dustin Fallon of The Blancheville Monster.

Released in Italy as Horror, this film’s script by Gianni Grimaldi and Bruno Corbucci was said to be based on the works of Edgar Allan Poe. Sure, there are some parts of The Fall of the House of Usher, A Tale of the Ragged Mountains and Some Words with a Mummy, but it’s as much a true Poe as the films of Roger Corman.

It was directed by Alberto De Martino who I celebrate for so many of his remake remix rip-off movies like OK Connery, The Antichrist and Holocaust 2000. Outside of those movies, he also made the wild giallo cop movie hybrid Strange Shadows In an Empty Room. It won’t sell you on this movie if I told you that he said that it was “a little film of no importance.”

Emilie De Blancheville (Ombretta Colli, who would one day become the President of Milan) has returned to her family’s ancestral home only to learn that everything has changed. Her father, the Count Blancheville, has become disfigured and gone mad, locked in a tower. Her brother Rodéric (Gérard Tichy) has taken over the home and rules over his servants with an iron fist after, well, all the old help has been killed. And now, the Count is loose and sure that if his daughter is killed before his 21st birthday, the curse on the Blancheville family will end. And oh yes — there’s also a cold and evil housekeeper known as Miss Eleonore played by Helga Liné.

AIP sold this to American TV, so if you watched horror shows from the 60s to the 80s, there’s a good chance you’ve seen this. However, you haven’t seen it look as good as it does in the new Arrow box set.

Along with a new video introduction by Italian film devotee Mark Thompson Ashworth, a limited edition 80-page book featuring new writing by Roberto Curti, Rob Talbot, Jerome Reuter, Rod Barnett and Kimberly Lindbergs, a fold-out double-sided poster and limited edition packaging with reversible sleeves featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Colin Murdoch, The Blancheville Monster also has commentary by filmmaker and film historian Paul Anthony Nelson, a new video essay by writer and pop culture historian Keith Allison, a new video interview with author and filmmaker Antonio Tentori, opening credits for the US release of the film and a trailer.

You can get this set from MVD.

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