Nude for Satan (1974)

Before its DVD release in 1999, Nude For Satan languished hidden in an Italian vault for a quarter century, no doubt the victim of some Illuminati scheme to protect the world from its tempting message of kinky sensuousness through devil worship.

Throughout the film, the Devil does his damnedest to coax unsuspecting viewers over to his camp. He makes a chick’s clothes disappear just by looking at her. A naked woman gets whipped by an ugly butler. He influences a gal to go lesbian. He even has a giant spider menace the star while she was only wearing a skimpy nightgown and black panties! But the Devil also does some bad stuff in the movie, too.

One of his most heinous acts was near the end of the film when he taunted us by having hot babes emerging from tombs getting naked only to interject dudes wearing paint and dressed in red thongs into the scene! And they were dancing!

It’s like all the good work he did throughout the rest of the film was totally wasted and I went back to being a strong Christian!

There were other demonic moments in Nude for Satan that make you question your faith in the Devil, but I was never too sure if those were part of Satan’s evil plan or just director Luigi Batzella ineptly padding out a film that had virtually no story to an eternity-in-hell-length 82 minutes.

For example, as soon as the male star began chasing a mysterious figure throughout the castle’s grounds without being able to see his face, you immediately know that once he catches up to the guy, it will be himself.

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Still, you had several more minutes of crazy camera angles and huffing and puffing to put up with before this guy could finally come face to face with his doppelganger. If this wasn’t the Devil working through Batzella, the Devil was surely chortling nonetheless at the viewer’s torment.

A mysterious automobile accident begins William and Susan on their journey of sexy self-discovery. William discovers Susan unconscious in her wrecked car and goes for help. Next stop: one of those ubiquitous local creepy castles that populate the Italian countryside in movies like this.

The castle is inhabited by the Devil and his grody butler. Strange and icky things are going inside. There’s a dusty guy with bad teeth in a cobweb-filled room and in another room a guy is getting it on with a woman. There is also a portrait that is haunted by bad special effects.

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For his part, the Devil is generally content to let all the dirty stuff play out without much interference. He does have an annoying habit of spewing forth nonsense such as “time is suspended and you are eternal prisoners of your own selves.”

Even worse, he causes a mirror to break, appears behind it, and complains about how noisy William and Susan are!

But exactly is the Devil’s game here? Is this some monstrous plot to kick God in the butt and take over the world? Is he attempting to precipitate Armageddon? We wish! His plan is even more heinous (at least for the viewer) in that he is apparently forcing William and Susan to confront their darker selves!

Presumably William’s evil double explains much of this when he has a lengthy confrontation with William following their Italian version of the Boston Marathon.

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It involves him arguing back and forth with William and flashing some medallions around (two sides of the same coin and all that I suppose), but in a movie where very little makes sense and mostly appears to be a random collage of strange sequences, you can’t help but zone out and hope that something like a spider sniffing black panties appears again. (Nothing does.)

The finale is a surprise that’s completely expected right down to the reappearance of the medallions and does nothing beyond convincing the audience it just wasted its time on a bunch of sleazy exploitation cinema dressed up with metaphysical nonsense.

Nude for Satan then finds itself in the odd position of only being redeemed by its completely gratuitous dirty stuff, a creepy spider who is creepy because of how fake it looks (think oven mitt with pipe cleaners sticking out of it) and the whole “what gloriously idiotic thing next is going to happen” vibe that permeates the film.

© 2013 MonsterHunter

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