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La Noche Del Terror Ciego

We all have someone in our past that we wouldn't meet anymore. Because we have bad memories or because this persons beat us in everything, as when you are trying to seduce someone.

Perhaps it's too much to do as Virginia, which lunge from a train and goes into an area where there isn't a living soul (and we don't say that by a chance).

This is the beginning of the beginning, in the sense that Armando De Ossorio, "The Last Templar", begin with this movie his famous tetralogy starring the blind Templars. Here, however, in the original language, there aren't references to the famous order, but to an order of the Knights of the East. For the record.

Templars or not this is the number one of successful series that has made the fortune of Armando De Ossorio, a horror director very interesting, but a little 'overshadowed by the reputation of his most famous and naughty countryman Jess Franco. But Ossorio deserves a place in history, because "La Noche del Terror Ciego", is a handmade movie that deserves the esteem of the fans of the genre (and not only them). A film that has several flaws, as genre wants, but that also has many good things, represented by solutions as simple as effective.

The inspiration is George Romero, whose message is "translated" into a story that is partly Gothic and partly contemporary. Two worlds those are well physically separated and coming together thanks to the main characters of the story. The narrative is rather slow, typical of the period, but given the setting, at the end is not boring even one modern viewer.

"La Noche del Terror Ciego" doesn't have a plot very powerful and the incipit that we have summarized briefly is really trivial, with this girl, Virginia, which meets on holyday her old friend and schoolmate Betty. The first decidedly cute and naive, seems to have a kind of subjection to the friend, who, thanks to a flashback, we understand that taught her many things, even Sapphic sex represented by a chaste kiss.

A psychological subjection that becomes a nuisance insurmountable for Virginia, when her friend Roger, of whom she is in love, also invites Betty to spend some days in another town. She doesn't resist bursts of jealousy lunge herself from the train that is taking them to the destination. Instead of returning home, however, she stops in the ruins of an old medieval village, where at night the old local lords (the Knights of the East) come back to life to continue to pay the toll (female) to Satan.

About what happened to Virginia, investigate later Betty and Roger who discover the incredible history of the blind Knights. We don’t' want to tell you a lot, but the history of this congregation is definitely well built and briefly sees them protagonists, then executed, (hung from trees with eyes eaten by crows), of a story that takes situations from the ancient Egypt and melee with Satan for the usual exchange.

This medieval part is really interesting, as is, all the horror aspects, and as the same knights/ zombies. From the flash back when they were alive, in which we can also see the beautiful Britt Nichols, the opening of graves, to make up and to the movements that include rides several times shot in slow motion. The monsters are credible and they create a little annoyance. Maybe a little too smart, are the result of some clever and simple steps ideas by Ossorio, who had certainly not an unlimited budget and complete the whole with long silences, gloomy sounds and a soundtrack that emphasize the most important moments, to take us to the beautiful scene of Betty trying to escape from the zombies (who are blind) but is betrayed by her heartbeat, the only sound.

In addition to the good Gothic world there are also good ideas in contemporary one. Excellent and exquisitely horror are the scenes in the morgue, to which we forgive a lamp that swings for no reason and of which we enjoy the maniac attendant  and an unexpected moment of black humor, or the train, which passes close to the cursed place and who is the protagonist of the ending.

A cult movie, sometimes packaged very well, with a photograph that has a good time (not many to be honest, but some) and so many moments of suspense.

Unfortunately, however, there are incredible banalities. Apart from the incipit, even the part that takes us to the ending is ridiculous, with four characters in the damn place should try to find out the truth, but some of them prefers more to have sex.

The characters probably could be more deep, because we don’t' know or it seems, what there is really between Betty and Virginia. Not to mention Roger whom we only know that is handsome, (so they say) and that is a decorator.

Doubts and flaws aside, Ossorio made a very enjoyable film, a co-production between Spain and Portugal, with scenes filmed in Madrid, Lisbon, Estoril, Palmela and Sesimbra. A film taken then by the usual unscrupulous distributors, US for the occasion, that trying to exploit the commercial success of "Planet Of Apes" released the film with the title "Revenge from Planet Ape", creating a prologue about an old civilization monkeys destroyed by humans. Bah.


Original title: La Noche Del Terror Ciego

Alternative titles: La noche del terror ciego (Spain), Tombs of the Blind Dead, The Night of the Blind Terror (English title), A Noite do Cego Terror (Portugal), Die Nacht der reitenden Leichen (Germany), Grobnice slepih mrtvaca (Serbia), Hayaletler Mezari (Turkey), I ekdikisis ton vrykolakon, I nyhta tou Mavrou thanatou, Zombie sti nyhta tou Mavrou thanatou (Greece), The révolte des morts-vivants (France), tombs of the Blind Dead (Italy), Mark of the Devil Part V: Night of the Blind Terror, Mark of the Devil, Part 4: Tombs of the Blind Dead, Revenge from Planet Ape, The Blind Dead, Tombs of the Evil Dead (USA), Tombs of the Blind Zombies (Netherlands), Vakrémület (Hungary) Crypt of the Blind Dead Night of the Blind Dead (undefined)

Year: 1972

Country: Spain

Director: Armando De Ossorio

Cast: Lone Fleming, César Burner, Maria Elena Arpon, José Thelman, Rufino Ingles, Veronica Llimera, Sion Arriaga

Duration: 97 '

Production Company: Interfilme, Plata Films S.A.