Film

Film

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Packaged for a double-bill run with legendarily ultraviolent serial-killer flick The Toolbox Murders, this gory exploitation costumer purports to mine actual records of witch hunts to create endless sadomasochistic scenes of stagy torture, replete with breathlessly dubbed moans and gasps laid over images of generously bosomed, tightly bodiced young beauties as they writhe beneath an ingenious (and perhaps historically accurate) procession of stickpins, gallows, and stocks. Starring Udo Kier (as the only 18th-century Austrian who had yet to catch news of the Enlightenment), the entertainment value of this low-rent contemporary to Ken Russell’s The Devils is due more to its ketchup-red kitsch factor than any Wiccan historiographic merits or truly frightening qualities. Though the Pioneer is reviving this picture’s original barf-bag-at-the-door promo gimmick, there’s about a 50 percent chance it’ll be more useful to save it for watching the returns on Election Night.