HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Predator, The
Shirkers
Human Experiments
Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte
Occupation
Intruder
Beast
What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?
King of Thieves
Unfriended: Dark Web
Blood Fest
Visit to a Small Planet
12th Man, The
Laura
Hotel Artemis
Dogman
Zama
City on Fire
Bird Box
Nico, 1988
BlacKkKlansman
Panique
Happy New Year, Colin Burstead
Accident Man
Tomb Raider
Cold War
Roma
Gemini
Yardie
Let the Corpses Tan
   
 
Newest Articles
Strange Days 2: The Second Science Fiction Weirdness Wave
Strange Days: When Science Fiction Went Weird
Ha Ha Haaargh: Interview With Camp Death III in 2D! Director Matt Frame
Phone Freak: When a Stranger Calls on Blu-ray
A Name to Conjure With: David Nixon's Magic Box on DVD
Which 1950s Sci-Fi was Scariest? Invaders from Mars vs The Blob
The Empire Strikes Back: Khartoum vs Carry On Up the Khyber
Stan and Ollie's Final Folly: Atoll K on Blu-ray
The Big Grapple: Escape from New York and Its Influence
The Conquest of Everett: The Kenny Everett Video Show on DVD
Bout for the Count: Hammer's Dracula in the 1970s
Nopes from a Small Island: Mistreatment of American Stars in British Films
You Know, For Kids: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box
If He Were a Carpenter and It Was the 80s: The Fog, Prince of Darkness and They Live
Tee-Hee, It's 80s Sci-Fi Horror: Night of the Comet, The Stuff and Night of the Creeps
   
 
  Romasanta: The Werewolf Hunt Hungry Like The WolfBuy this film here.
Year: 2004
Director: Paco Plaza
Stars: Elsa Pataky, Julian Sands, Gary Piquer, David Gant, John Sharian, Luna McGill, Maru Valdivielso, Carlos Reig, Reg Wilson
Genre: Horror, Historical
Rating:  8 (from 2 votes)
Review: Brian Yuzna continues the prolific output of his Barcelona-based Fantastic Factory production house with this artful period horror. It’s a handsomely mounted, slow-burning werewolf yarn based on the true story of Manuel Blanco Romasanta, a traveller who was convicted of murdering 15 people in the Spanish countryside in 1853. Romasanta admitted to the murders but claimed he killed whilst in the form of a wolf, a plea that led to his conviction being revoked by Queen Isabel II before dying mysteriously in prison.

Paco Plaza’s film, based on a book by Alfredo Conde, mixes fact with fiction in telling this strange tale. Julian Sands plays Romasanta as a gruff charmer who has hooked up with a woman named Maria (Maru Valdivielso), but it’s her sister Barbara (Elsa Pataky) that he has his eye on. Romasanta kills Maria and their other sister Teresa, and seduces Barbara. Meanwhile, the townsfolk are convinced that the spate of killings destroying their community is the work of a pack of vicious wolves, but investigating attorney Luciano (Gary Piquer) believes there may be more to it than that.

Elena Serra and Alberto Marini’s screenplay maintains a level of ambiguity as to Romasanta’s supposed lycanthropy, and even though we are provided with a nifty transformation sequence, the question remains: is Romasanta simple a deranged and deluded serial killer? Romasanta’s former partner Antonio (John Sharian) also claims to be a werewolf and is banged up in an asylum for his trouble, but flashbacks in which we see the pair kill together are filmed in such a way that we are never sure whether it is as wolf or man.

Most of the events unfold from Barbara’s perspective, and Elsa Pataky puts in an emotive performance (much better than her turn in Yuzna’s Beyond Re-Animator) as the besotted young beauty who slowly uncovers the truth about Romasanta. Unfortunately, Plaza tries to cram way too much into just 90 minutes – I’m all for keeping films short, but the climax here is incredibly rushed, as the director desperately attempts to tie up all the loose ends before the end credits. Especially interesting is the subplot concerning Attorney Luciano and pathology professor Philips (David Gant), and their opposing methods of investigating the crimes; shame there’s just not enough time to explore it properly.

Still, it’s good to see a serious, old fashioned Gothic tale that puts the emphasis on atmosphere and period detail without ever becoming dull. Mikel Salas’s classy orchestral score and Plaza’s stylish way with a camera make Romasanta seem a lot more expensive than it undoubtedly was, and it’s certainly one of the strongest films in the Fantastic Factory canon.

Aka: La Romasanta: Caza de la Bestia
Reviewer: Daniel Auty

 

This review has been viewed 13155 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Paco Plaza  (1973 - )

Spanish director who made a variety of short films before debuting in 2002 with the horror thriller Second Name. Followed with the period werewolf flick Romasanta, produced by Brian Yuzna. He subsequently teamed up with another Spaniard, Jaume Balaguero, for the successful REC series.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Stately Wayne Manor
George White
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Aseels Almasi
Rashed Ali
   

 

Last Updated: