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Twins of Evil (1971)


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#1 Sandra Merkatz

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Posted 18 June 2017 - 03:57 AM

Hello!

 

I´m so happy, because finally I´ve got my new Blu-ray of the movie "Twins of Evil" from 1971, from the HAMMER-studios, with Peter Cushing! I never saw the movie before. (The German title "Draculas Hexenjagd" is absolutely ridiculous, it means "Draculas Witchhunt" and has nothing to do with the plot I´ve already read. Typical German translations of the 70s -.-)

In Germany, there is a company called Anolis. They bought the rights for many HAMMER-movies and sell them in beautifully made, but limited mediabooks, and as a standard Blu-ray.

 

In different unboxing-videos on YouTube I saw that the mediabooks are of high quality. They are quite thick and stable, the cover feels like leather. Inside there is a booklet with lots of photos (but not just some screenshots of the movie itself, but photos you don´t find that often, for example Behind the Scenes-shots or posters from other countries etc., so they invested time in making those BDs) and a long text about the movie and the actors, especially written for the Blu-ray. The booklet is not loose, it is attached inside the mediabook, with good quality paper.

 

For "Twins of Evil", there are two mediabooks and one regular Blu-ray, as you can see here:

 

anolis hexenjagd neu.jpg

 

The mediabooks are limited to 500 pieces, and are sold out. I´ve got mine new and in the original packaging, of course I had to pay a little more for this. Here is mine, still in the original packaging:

 

Draculas Hexenjagd kleiner.jpg

 

I will be hard to open that thing of course, but I bought it not to sell it to collectors but because I usually like HAMMER-movies and I want to see the film.

I read that Carmilla, the vampire, has a cameo in this movie. I also read the novel "Carmilla" by Sheridan LeFanu and I saw the HAMMER-movie "The Vampire Lovers" from 1970, with Ingrid Pitt as Carmilla and again Peter Cushing. So I´m curious what she will do here.

 

When I have watched it, I will write a review here!

 

 

Greetings,

Sandra

 

 

 


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#2 Sandra Merkatz

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 08:39 PM

(Warning: this review contains spoilers!)

 

I just saw that movie now.

 

Oh. My. God! That movie is awful!!

 

I don´t even know where to start … I like the movie “The Vampire Lovers” from 1970 (I call it “VL” from now on) very much, it has a suspenseful story, good actors (especially Ingrid Pitt as Carmilla), of course some nudity, but it always fits to the plot and doesn´t seem uninspired. Also the settings and especially the mood is very good! And there is real erotic in that movie, full of fantasy, not like a soft-porn.  Of course VL is not a really great, groundbreaking movie, it´s not “Nosferatu” or something like that, but I always compare movies with other movies who have the same goal. That´s why I compare “Twins of Evil” with “Carmilla”, both are from the HAMMER studios, both are made about the same time (1970, 1971).

 

But let´s talk about “Twins of Evil”. The title itself is wrong, because only one of the sisters is evil, the other one is the “good” one. But of course “Twins of Evil” sounds better.

 

The story itself (especially the ending) is absolutely predictable! The evil vampire dies, the evil sister dies, the fanatic witchhunter Peter Cushing dies, and the good sister is saved by her boyfriend. Boring! Compared to VL, ToE doesn´t have any plot twists or surprises.

The actors, especially the two sisters, are disappointing (except for Peter Cushing, who is a convincing fanatic witchhunter, who later doubts his actions, when one of his own family is accused to be a witch). The sister, former Playboy models (because Playboy models are good actors …), act very wooden and facile. The evil one is rebellious and devious and shows that very point-blank, while the other one is the nice and shy one. Probably they didn´t act well, because both are dubbed by other women in the original English-version. You don´t even hear their voices. They also don´t have much scenes together, and when they do, mostly they stand side to side to each other and react to other people talking to them.

The main villain, the vampire Count Karnstein (who looks like a young Jimmy Fallon btw), is played very poorly and so over the top and theatric, that you can´t take him serious. He isn´t creepy or scary at all. When I think of Ingrid Pitts much more subtle villain Carmilla … when you looked at her, you never knew what she is thinking, and she could be seductive, dangerous, but also tragic at the same time, without doing faces or laughing like the villain in silent movies, who bound the girl on the railroad track.

Of course: both VL and ToE try to entertain the audience with erotic scenes too. But the question is HOW they do that. And VL does it right, in my opinion, because they worked very much with words, with the way someone looks or with gestures. But you won´t find erotic scenes in ToE, instead just a VERY ungraceful sex-scene between the resurrected Carmilla and Count Karnstein. (I´m glad Ingrid Pitt refused the offer to play Carmilla in a cameo again!). This scene is ridiculous: it is filmed in a bad way, in one shot Carmilla grabs a candlestick and does obscene gestures on it, which would be ridiculous even in a real porn-movie, and worst of all, the whole scene is absolutely UNNECESSARY to the plot! It slows the plot down, it´s not erotic, it´s just boring and unnecessary.

 

But there are also some plot holes that annoy me. For example, why is the body of Carmilla in a big coffin made of stone inside the castle of Count Karnstein? In Sheridan LeFanus novel, Carmilla turned to dust at the end. At the end of VL she was beheaded and didn´t turn into dust (at least we don´t see her doing that), but we don´t get any explanation for that. Later, Count Karnstein stabs a girl who is lying on the coffin, and the blood is dripping on Carmilla, and she gets resurrected just because of that? Also, after the horrible sex-scene, what happened to Carmilla? She doesn´t appear again in the movie. But the biggest plot hole for me is this: when the castle is attacked by the angry mob, and the evil vampire sister is decapitated, Count Karnstein kidnapps the good sister and took her into the castle. But why didn´t he bite her? All he does is dragging here through hallways, and just when the hero of the story wants to save her, Karnstein tries to bite her. Why didn´t he bite her in the first place when he had the chance to?

 

 

At least the mediabook is good. A well written booklet with lots of nice pictures and much information like the release dates in the cinemas, the name of the voice-actors who dubbed the movie, etc. etc.(they also say that both sisters were obviously cast because of their looks, not because of their acting skills, so it´s a good-researched and critical booklet, not full of promotion and praises of how good the movie is). There is much bonus material on the Blu-ray too, like a long interview with the actor of Karnstein, a Super 8-version of the movie, picture gallerys, an audio commentary etc.

 

The sound format is 2.0 Mono, they didn´t do an upmix but release it in the original sound format, which is good for me.

 

I wouldn´t recommed this movie, even to HAMMER-fans, because this is one of the worst. Better watch "The Vampire Lovers"!

 

I added some phots I took with my mobile phone; it shows two pages of the booklet and the Blu-ray disc itself. They quality is poor, I know!

 

hexenjagd 3 kleiner.jpg   hexenjagd 2 klein.jpg   hexenjagd 1 klein.jpg

 

 

Greetings,

Sandra


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#3 Sandra Merkatz

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Posted 21 June 2017 - 11:03 PM

I want to add, "The Vampire Lovers" also has a little "insider"-joke. In the movie "Fearless Vampire Killers" by Roman Polanski, Ferdy Mayne played the main vampire who bites the woman.

 

In VL, he plays a good guy, who gets bitten by the main female vampire. I think that was done intentionally, to switch the roles here. :)

 

 

 

Greetings,

Sandra


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