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Baron Blood

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PG
1972

Baron Blood is a 1972 Italian horror film directed by Mario Bava. The film stars Joseph Cotten as an American professor, Peter Kleist, who travels to Austria to uncover his family's dark past. Elke Sommer plays Eva Arnold, an archeologist who assists Peter in his research.

The premise of the film is that Peter Kleist has inherited a castle in Austria from his ancestor, Baron Otto von Kleist, who was a notorious sadist and torturer. The castle is rumored to be haunted by the ghost of von Kleist, and locals warn Peter against visiting. However, Peter is determined to uncover the truth about his family's history and enlists the help of Eva to delve into the castle's secrets.

As they begin their investigation, strange things start to happen. They discover a book on black magic that belonged to von Kleist and soon come into contact with a mysterious man who claims to be related to the baron. The man, Alfred Becker, is played by Massimo Girotti and is revealed to be a practitioner of black magic himself.

As the investigation continues, Peter and Eva unwittingly awaken the spirit of Baron von Kleist. The spirit takes control of an automaton that was created by the baron, and soon the two are being hunted by the bloodthirsty machine. To make matters worse, Becker is actually a disciple of the baron and is intent on bringing him back to life in the flesh.

The rest of the film follows Peter and Eva's frantic attempts to stop the resurrection of Baron von Kleist and prevent the automaton from killing them both.

Baron Blood is a typical example of the Italian horror film genre of the 1970s. The film features all the classic elements of the genre, including elaborate gothic sets, gruesome violence, and a supernatural monster. It also has some distinctive features that set it apart, such as the inclusion of black magic and the focus on the family's dark past.

One of the film's strengths is its visual style. The gothic sets are impressive and create an eerie atmosphere that is perfect for a horror film. The automaton, which is a disturbing creation, is brought to life through effective special effects that are still impressive today.

The performances in the film are also noteworthy. Joseph Cotten, a legendary actor who starred in classic films such as Citizen Kane, brings a sense of gravitas to the role of Peter Kleist. Elke Sommer is also excellent as Eva Arnold, who is both intelligent and resourceful. Massimo Girotti adds an element of creepiness to the film as the evil disciple of Baron von Kleist.

The film's score, which was composed by Stelvio Cipriani, is also worth mentioning. The haunting musical theme perfectly captures the eerie atmosphere of the film and adds to the overall sense of unease.

One of the film's weaknesses is its pacing. The first half of the film can be slow at times, as the investigation is set up and the characters are introduced. However, the film picks up in the second half as the action and horror elements intensify.

Despite its flaws, Baron Blood is an enjoyable watch for fans of classic horror films. The film is atmospheric, well-acted, and features some impressive special effects. Its use of black magic and gothic horror sets it apart from other films in the genre and makes it a unique entry in the Italian horror canon.

Baron Blood is a Horror movie released in 1972. It has a runtime of 98 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 5.9..

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5.9/10
Director
Mario Bava
Stars
Joseph Cotten, Elke Sommer, Massimo Girotti
Genres
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