Cango – Korkusuz Adam (1967)

Obviously, the entire week that we spent on Italian Westerns should let you know how much I love Django. Now, after double digits of rip-offs and remakes in his native Italy, the man once played by Franco Nero (and Jamie Foxx, Anthony Steffen, Glenn Saxson, George Eastman, James Philbrook, Franco Franchi, Tomas Milian, Ivan Rassimov, Gianni Garko, Terence Hill, Jack Betts, Brad Harris and certainly several more that I’m neglecting to remember) has made his way to Turkey.

He’s also brought along another Italian character, this time the antihero Killing, known in Turkey as Kilink. Here, he’s merely called the Death Rider, but we all know who he is. Who else would cut the hand of one of his own men off, then feed it to a dog, and still have everyone like him?

I have no idea how a remix like this happened, but I’m glad that it did. Also, the Turkish film industry made plenty of ripoffs of Ringo, including Kanunsuz Kahraman – Ringo Kid, which rips off 7 Men from Now and uses the music from Winchester 1965/1966. Of course, it stars Cüneyt Arkin.

You can download this from the Internet Archive.

Kilink Istanbul’da (1967)

Kilink in Istanbul takes the Italian photo comic supervillain Killing and places him into mortal combat with the Turkish version — well, one of many — of Superman, here known as Flying Man.

Kilink (Yildirim Gencer) was dead, but maybe he was just resting, because his lover has brought him back to life to take over the world or die trying and get resurrected and try again. He kills a professor to get his formula and the professor’s son goes all Billy Batson, meets a wizard and yells “Shazam!” to switch into a superhero who has Batman’s mask, the Phantom’s tights and the rest of Superman’s clothes. What, did you expect him to shout “Kimota!”?

To the sound of John Barry’s James Bond theme, Killing kills with no hint of conscience and also is as suave as can be. This is the first of many films with this character and they will take him all over fiction, battling not only Superman one more time, but everyone from Mandrake the Magician to Frankenstein’s Monster and Django. Sadly, these films were incredibly disposable and not many of them survive.

You can download this from the Internet Archive.

Kilink Ucan Adama Karsi (1967)

Kilink — KIlling — is an Italian anti-hero in the mold of Diabolik co-opted by the Turkish copyright smashing machine, which also has its grimy hands on Superman in the sequel to Kilink Istanbul’da. You may ask, why have I put these films on the site completely out of order? That’s because it won’t matter. They make little to no sense as it is in the very best of ways and should be experienced as singularly wonderful works of strange art. Just watch them in any order — alphabetical, chronological or, like me, as you find them.

Superman located our skeleton-suited villain’s secret base, the place where he has hidden away his fiancee and her father. Superman has a fiancee? Well, Superman also has the same origin as Captain Marvel, the mask of Batman, the striped underwear of the Lee Falk Phantom and a weightlifter belt.

The end of this movie has been lost, so it is shown as still photos with narration. More movies should embrace this kind of ridiculous storytelling, as we learn that Kilink has fallen to his doom, because Turkish Superman doesn’t have the same “nobody dies” rules as Clark Kent. Don’t worry. He literally laughs it off in the next movie, Kilink: Soy ve Öldür.

This was written by Çetin Inanç, who would go on to make even more baffling and wonderful movies. It stars Irfan Atasoy, who was also in Maskeli Seytan and Spy Smasher and Süheyl Egriboz, who would later appear in Vashi Kan.

You have to love that the look of these Turkish superheroes were literally three decades or more behind the times, not even realizing that Eurospy and Batmania had changed the look of the movie serial.

You can download this from the Internet Archive.

Kadın Düşmanı (1967)

With a name like Woman Despiser, you know that you’re entering the world of the giallo. But you’re not coming into it from Italy or Germany or even England, the home of Edgar Wallace, but instead, Turkey. The amazing thing is that this film comes from 1967, before Argento reinvented the form, so it really is closer to an Umberto Lenzi-style giallo or a German krimi.

A masked killer is murdering women one at a time, using the first letter of their first name and the initial letter of the district that he is in. He also wears different monster masks and has zombie hands and, well, there’s no nice way to say it — he assaults the women after he’s killed them.

I was shocked by that — and how Westernized the women were — which is way more than I expected from a late 60’s Turkish movie. There aren’t many on-screen kills, but the one — where we see the knife spray a young woman’s blood out of her throat — is memorable enough.

So yeah — miniskirts were all the rage here in 1967, as was the rock and roll. And murder, it seems. It’s hard to find a 100% original genre film out of this country, but darn it if writer and director İlhan Engin didn’t pull it off. It’s no The Girl Who Knew Too Much, but it’s not the worst black glove killer movie I’ve ever seen.

Sangre de Vírgenes (1967)

Amongst connoisseurs of the seamier world of exploitation film — alright, let’s be fair and call ourselves scumbags — Emilio Vieyra is best-known for his 1969 film The Curious Dr. Humpp, an astounding retitling of his film La Vengenza del Sexo (The Revenge of Sex). Blame Jerald Intrator, director of Striporama and dubbing supervisor for Night of the Bloody Apes) for that, as he also bought Vierya’s Placer Sangriento (Bloody Pleasure) and released it with the equally awesome title The Deadly Organ. Oh yeah — he was also smart enough to insert twenty minutes of nudity into La Vengenza del Sexo, a movie already rife with naked bodies.

This is Vierya’s vampire film. Actually, he also made La Bestia Desnuda (The Naked Beast) too.

Ofelia’s (Susana Beltrán, who appears in several of the director’s films, including saying “Use my body to keep you alive!” to Dr. Humpp and another I need to see called Stay Tuned for Terror) is about to be married to Eduardo but is truly in love with Gustavo. On her wedding night, her true love breaks into the honeymoon suite, kills her husband and turns her into a vampire just like him.

We fast-forward to the 60’s where Ofelia’s curse continues as she seduces and drains numerous teens one by one after their van breaks down. While she’s using up men, Gustavo is planning on doing the same with all the ladies.

The Argentinan government cracked down hard on this mix of gore and sex, keeping it hidden away for four years before allowing it to be released in all its bloody go-go dancing glory.

Mondo Macabro released this back in 2004, so here’s hoping that someday soon it gets another reissue. It’s so worthy of your time, a movie with seagulls instead of bats.

The Blood Beast Terror (1967)

When you mention 1960’s British horror films, most people are going to think of Hammer. Or Amicus. But there’s also Tigon, the very small studio who could, and by could, I mean make some astoundingly strange movies.

Witchfinder General, The Curse of the Crimson AltarThe Blood on Satan’s Claw…these are the movies that make me think that England in 1967 was an insane place to be.

Vernon Sewell directed this thriller about young and good looking men having their throats torn open and drained by a killer so frightening that whomever it is has driven the last eyewitness mad, claiming that a horrible winged creature with huge eyes is the killer.

Detective Inspector Quennell (Peter Cushing) responds by thinking that a giant eagle — no, not the Pittsburgh-based grocery store — has to be the murderer.

If this development has you happy, then good news. This is the kind of stiff upper lip British low budget fun you’re looking for. Yes, I struggled to include this in either the werewolf or vampire weeks we’re planning because it features a weremoth who lives on human blood. A weremoth! What will they think of next!?!

Cushing considered this the worst of his many films. Scanning his vast resume should tell you just how low this must be, but he was acting in as many films as he could to pay for the care of his wife Helene, who was suffering from emphysema. She would die four years later and by all accounts, he never recovered.

This played on double bills with the 1962 Italian film Slaughter of the Vampires. You can watch it all by its lonesome on YouTube.

The Hellbenders (1967)

Colonel Jonas (Joseph Cotten) has led the Hellbenders through the Civil War and he refuses to give in at the end of the battles. He takes his sons Ben, Nat and Jeff on a continuing campaign of massacres, killing Union soldiers as they move money and placing their treasure inside a coffin.

Even the love and devotion of Clare (Norma Bengell) is not enough for Jonas, who wants more power, more destruction and well, just more.

There’s a fabulous score by Ennio Morricone — that goes without saying — and Sergio Corbucci’s direction, which guides another Italian Western that is all about darkness and despair. Cotten is one of my favorite actors of all time. Even in a small picture, he makes something wonderful. This is no small picture.

You can watch this movie on Daily Motion.

Django Kill… If You Live, Shoot! (1967)

Django Kill…If You Live, Shoot! is unlike any Italian Western that you’ve ever seen, somehow being all at once a Western, a splatter movie and some surrealism too. If you’re going in expecting the normal themes of a loner at war with an uncaring world, sure there’s some of that. There’s also way more than you could ever expect.

There’s a reason for that. It’s written and directed by Giulio Questi, whose films are never normal, from his script for The Possessed to the positively deranged Death Laid an Egg and Arcana, which pretty much ruined his directing career and kept him out of movies for almost a decade until he made some TV movies in the early 1980s, a place that allowed him to keep making films until as late as 2011, three years before his death.

Man, I don’t know where to even begin with this one.

Two medicine men discover a man known only as The Stranger (Tomas Milian, Don’t Torture A Duckling) who remembers attacking a Wells Fargo wagon and splitting the gold with his partner Oaks (Piero Lulli, the sheriff in My Name Is Nobody) before getting shot in the back. The Native Americans tell our protagonist that they have melted down what is left of the gold into bullets and that they want to follow him on a hunt to what they call The Unhappy Place.

The Unhappy Place ends up being a town full of maniacs who lynch Oaks’ gang. The villain barricades himself in a saloon before The Stranger finds him and wounds him before the townspeople tear him apart to get to the gold bullets. Meanwhile, as a shocked Stanger and the medicine men try to bury what’s left of the gang, the townspeople argue over what’s left of the gold.

Foremost amongst the weirdness in this town is the homosexual rancher with a hate-filled parrot Sorrow (Roberto Camardiel, Arizona Colt), who will kill anyone in his way to get the treasure. His men even crucify our hero and torture him with vampire bats (!) and scalp one of the medicine men.

What can you say about a movie where people desire gold so much that it ends up melting them while an entire town watches before our hero rides away alone, followed by children using string to distort their faces?

This is a baffling, fascinating entry in the world of the Italian Western, one that would be great even without the Django title. It’s also the movie debut of Ray Lovelock, who plays the doomed Evan.I haven’t even gotten to the psychedelic editing yet!

This is one of the strangest and yet most gorgeous Italian Westerns I’ve seen. A definite recommendation.

You can watch this on YouTube.

Day of Anger (1967)

We already discussed Tonino Valerii’s My Name Is Nobody early this week. He also made this film with Lee Van Cleef, a face that Western audiences associate with the Italian Western.

Here, he plays Frank Talby, an aging gunfighter who starts to teach the rules of the life to Scott Mary (Giuliano Gemma, who will always be known as Ringo). However, the life of constant death may not be the right life for Scott, as Murph tries to teach him. The end of this movie is sobering; there is no real triumph in the death that he unleashes.

Come for the Western action; stay for the story and the Riz Ortolani score (you can hear some of it in Django Unchained). This film is an interesting counterpoint to Valerii’s later Nobody. It also features Al Mulock (who died in spectacular fashion in Leone’s The Good, The Bad and The Ugly; when he killed himself by diving out of his hotel window in full costume while making Once Upon a Time In the West, Leone famously yelled, “Get the costume, we need the costume.”) and German actress Christa Linder, who was in Fulci’s Dracula in the Provinces.

You can watch this movie on YouTube.

Don’t Wait, Django… Shoot! (1967)

Anyone upset about the continuity issues of the Halloween movies should sit down and watch some Italian Westerns, where characters may or may not be the same actor or even the same character from film to film.

Django is the best example, with two official films (DjangoDjango Strikes Again), a remake (Django Unchained) and nearly forty unofficial movies, including this one. Of these films, experts believe that only Django, Prepare a Coffin is a semi-official, legitimate sequel, as it was originally intended to star Nero.

In this film, Django Foster comes home to find his father dead and the family’s fortune stolen. The role is played by Sean Todd, but come on. We all know that that Americanized stage name can only be Ivan Rassimov. His sister Rada is also in this film as is Ignazio Spalla from the Sabata series.

This film was directed by Edoardo Mulargia, who would go on one day to make the movies Orinoco: Prigioniere del sesso, which was re-edited and released in the U.S. as the Linda Blair-starring Savage Island.

Mulargia would also make Cjamango with Rassimov and Mickey Hargitay, as well as W Django! and Shango with Anthony Steffen. Obviously, he really liked Django or at least the money that came from making people think his movies were actual sequels.

You can watch this on Amazon Prime.