Thursday, April 18, 2013

Mondo Franco...


Despite what many might think, Jesus 'Jess' Franco was much more than just a trashy latter day purveyor of tits and ass (liberally covered in bright red stuff.)  Franco, who died earlier this month, was a ghoulish gourmand of gore who slathered his beautiful women and similarly adorned hunk-a-men with blood and guts and brains and more blood.  

Always, more blood.

Except that wasn't the whole picture.  Franco, in many ways, was the unlikely progenitor of much of the great Spanish horror that is current today.  Sure, his style may have been a bit workmanlike, lacking in the cinematographic niceties and technical brio of some of his more revered contemporaries, but central to all of his films, and this is why his movies will continue to captivate, thrill and be watched, is a consuming love and passionate intensity for the art of film-making - irrespective of the genre, the budget, the stars or, often, conspicuous lack of them.

Director, writer, musician, artist - Franco could do it all.  And, thankfully, for over 50 years, as the clip below of perhaps his most celebrated film, 1971's 'Vampyros Lesbos' shows, he never tired of making films the uniquely Franco way...

Hell, we can even forgive him 'Mondo Cannibale...'