Sunday, May 10, 2020

Vampiress Review: "Terror in the Crypt"

The Gist: An old world count is worried that the spirit of an ancient witch in their bloodline is taking over his daughter.

Female Vampire Factor: I call this a vampire movie without being a vampire movie even though the films other title is indeed "Crypt of the Vampire".  The whole movie makes you believe that Laura Karnstein is unknowingly blacking out and sucking peoples blood.   The only bite scenes in the film are in first person so you never actually see who bites the women.
The bulk of the movie furthers this idea by having Laura act a lot like Carmilla Karnstein (this film could quite easily be a sequel to the Vampire Lovers even though it came out 6 years before it as Hammer also delved into the "Carmillas spirit possessing people" story in their trilogy).  She spends the bulk of the film attaching herself to a woman named Ursula with their relationship coming off many times as more than friendly.
Adriana Ambesi as a vampire is a thing of beauty and she is perfect for the role IF it happened because she is drop dead gorgeous.
 In this case it doesn't happen as the ending swerve ends up being that the girl she's seducing "Ursula" ends up being the spirit of Carmilla and has been manipulating Laura the whole time to make her believe she was the vampire. Eventually Count Karnstein and his crew find Carmilla's crypt just in time and opens it.  All pictures of Carmilla had been destroyed after the original was executed for being a witch so there was no way for them to recognize Ursula as Carmilla prior to opening the crypt and finding her perfectly preserved body.
After opening her crypt they sever Carmilla's heart just as Ursula was trying to take Laura away.  As Carmilla's body is destroyed Ursula shrieks in pain then vanishes into thin air only leaving her dress.

Final Opinion: I LOVED this film.  As Laura more and more starts to believe she's a vampire she begins to kind of act like Carmilla who was a straight up lesbian seductress for those who don't know the story.  If this had fangs even if just one scene it would've been perfect but I easily give this one a Vampire Beauty Rating of 4 out of 5 none the less. 

Adriana as a vampire isn't lost though.  She does sport fangs in another film I loved "Fangs of the Living Dead" five years later.

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