Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Dr Satán y la Magia Negra – review

Director: Rogelio A. González

Release date: 1968

Contains spoilers

A Sequel to 1966’s Doctor Satán, this was a Mexican movie and was fun for the main reason that it pitted evil against evil. Sure there were some cops nosing around but they were simply cannon fodder at best or just plumb useless. No this is simply for the villains and so our titular hero Dr Satán (Joaquín Cordero) is actually no hero at all.

Joaquín Cordero as Dr Satán
It begins with the voice of the Devil King waking Dr Satán from his slumber. There is no eternal rest for this villain, for villain would be the correct descriptor as opposed to anti-hero, Devil King has a mission for him. He must track down the evil worshipper of Lucifer, Yei Lin. Yei Lin wants to get his hands on the Sorenson formula and Dr Satán must stop him and kill him.

Yei Lin appears
We cut to a group of henchmen, Marco, Sergio and Dea. Dea is looking at a formula and she ascertains that it is a fake. The men complain that they followed their orders to the letter. A crap bat appears at a window and flies in, transforming into the cloaked Yei Lin, for he is a vampire (though he is referred to as a wizard all the way through the film). He tells them that they need to intercept Sorenson, who is due to land at the airport the next day.

Sorensen does indeed land and is followed to his hotel by all the baddies (Yei Lin is not bothered by sunlight). They, in turn, are followed by Dr Satán , who is followed by the cops. All through the film the cops are after Yei Lin, a known criminal, but are befuddled by the identity of Dr Satán. That night the baddies break into Sorenson’s room, searching for his formula. He awakens and grabs a gun, getting a knife in his chest for his trouble.

procedure on Angelique
A group of women wait to have an interview for a position with a new doctor. The first one, Angelique, is led to the interview by a woman – later revealed to be called Medusa. Dr Satán looks over her papers, ascertains that she has no family and tells Medusa to send the others away. He eye mojo’s her, takes her to his secret lab, does a ritual and then injects her with a formula; she is now his slave.

never snack on a zombie
Both women sleep in coffins and, when they are sent out on jobs, they are impervious to damage it seems – a knife in the back or bullets do no obvious harm. Later, when Yei Lin visits them in their coffins and bites them, he is disgusted to discover that they are zombies. As for the Sorenson formula – it turns base metals into gold. Gold, we discover, was created by Devil King to ensnare men’s souls. With an unlimited supply, Yei Lin would capture the souls for Lucifer (though it has to be said that he actually seems to work for a crime organisation as well).

funky fangs
It his vampirism that we are concerned with, however. Dr Satán breaks into his home, determined to kill him by poison dart – which he fires at a sleeping Yei Lin. The dart does not kill him, he bears fangs and turns into a big rubber bat and savages Dr Satán’s neck (the zombie girls come to the rescue). Later Dr Satán says he knows what Yei Lin is, a type of wizard that can only be killed with a wooden stake to the heart – or a vampire as everyone else would refer to them.

the inverted cross
Later he has the girls back Yei Lin down with crosses. Interestingly, being a case of evil against evil, they use inverted crosses and these seem to have the same effect as an upright cross would have against vampires in other films.

As suggested at the head of the review, the reason this film is enjoyable is that it is evil against evil. Dr Satán has a funky lair and we even get a glimpse of Devil King at one point, giant wings and all. Not great cinema but absolute fun 5.5 out of 10.

The imdb page is here.

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