Retro-review: New this week on a special edition multi-disk BluRay from Camp Motion Pictures!
A WEREWOLF IN THE AMAZON (2005)
Directed by Ivan Cardoso
Written by Gastão Cruls (novel), Rubens Francisco Luchetti, Evandro Mesquita, Flávio de Souza (screenplay)
Starring Daiana Amêndola, Karina Bacchi, Tania Boscoli, Bruno de Luca, Orlando Drummond, Sidney Magal, Nuno Leal Maia, Júlio Medaglia, Joana Medeiros, Evandro Mesquita, Pedro Neschling, Charles Paraventi, Caio Ramos, Guará Rodrigues and Paul Naschy as Dr. Moreau/the Werewolf!
The story is a simple and goofy one, yet there’s some kind of twisted genius to it. Dr. Moreau (played by legendary werewolf actor Paul Naschy) among his various experiments with animal/man hybrids, has also created a race of gorgeous Amazons who have developed their own culture in the middle of the jungle. Meanwhile, a group of kids are out to have a good time (like groups of kids often do in horror films) and decide to take some drugs whilst partying (also like kids often do in these films), only to find themselves stalked by some kind of monster in the jungle.
Then for no real reason at all, the story skids to a halt for a musical number set to salsa music.
Anyway, it turns out Dr. Moreau isn’t just a mad scientist, but he is also cursed with lycanthropy. While this isn’t the usual character of Waldemar Daninsky which Naschy has become infamous for playing through the years in low budget horror films, Naschy still gives his all in his later years in this performance. He really chews up the scenery as the bent scientist; even at one point, yelling at a corpse who suddenly sits up to lie back down. I think this scene is supposed to be some kind of dream image or hallucination for Moreau, but in the context of the scene, it just comes off as another weird inconsistency in a weird film. Still, Naschy gives his all and more in this one despite being up there in years.
It’s not often you see Dr. Moreau in movies. Most of his appearances can be counted on one hand. So I was surprised I hadn’t heard about this film which may have its way with the source material, but Naschy still gives the good doctor more soul than the book ever did. As the werewolf, Naschy is in his element. Attacking with gory fury, fans of Naschy in full on werewolf regalia will deem this a CANNOT MISS.
If you’re a horror fan, you can’t help but have fun watching this film. It’s random. It’s goofy. It isn’t funny when it tries to be, yet is hilarious at other moments of seriousness. It’s just a fun campy film. Paired with quite a few other films in this collection, I cannot wait to dive into the rest of the series given the amount of fun I had with A WEREWOLF IN THE AMAZON.