A Virgin Among the Living Dead (1973)

A Virgin Among the Living Dead (1973) movie poster

director Jesús Franco
viewed: 08/05/2018

I think I may be forgiven for mistaking A Virgin Among the Living Dead as one of Jesús Franco’s lesser works. In reality, it’s one of his best.

The late 1960s through early 1970s, when gratuitous nudity was de rigueur, Jess Franco found himself as director. Franco burned brightly during this time and in this period made his finest films. True, along with some much less fine films, but when you’re releasing upwards to a dozen films a year, they’re not all going to be wonderful.

Here, Jess appears as a babbling idiot, a gofer for a family of arch weirdness, kooky sexuality, and supernatural possibility. Christina (Christina von Blanc) comes to visit, having never met any of her family before, and discovers her heritage isn’t what you’d call “run of the mill”.

For me, this is one of Franco’s most aesthetically pleasing films. The dreamy nightmare is beautiful and the plot isn’t challenged by unnecessary logic.

It’s been a decade since I saw Vampyros Lesbos and Venus in Furs, two other high point Francos. A Virgin Among the Living Dead may be in the running for my favorite.

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