Demon possession, gothic style horror, sadism, throw all that up and shake it up and you get one of the strangest (That’s saying something) horror films to come out of Italy in the 70’s. I’m talking about Byleth: The Demon of Incest. Directed by Leopoldo Savona and made with what had to have been a microscopic budget it’s a weird sexual depraved film that moves along like a Giallo. It’s definitely one of the more twisted and interesting things I have seen.
Byleth: The Demon of Incest is all about Duke Lionello Shadwell. He’s a rich powerful man (He is a Duke after all)who loves nothing more in life than his sister. He really loves her. So much so when she comes to visit him he gets very excited. The only problem is, she brought her new husband with her. See when I say he likes her, I mean full blown incest likes her. He is madly in love with her and want to do nothing more than be with her for the rest of his life. No that’s where Byleth comes in. He’s the king of hell, and he can curse you to become the victim of incest. So we are lead to believe that Lionello has somehow run afoul on him to be having these feelings.
No love, especially of the incest variety can drive you insane. So insane you probably will want to murder someone. Well it just so happens that while all this is going on there is a serial killer on the loose. Is it Lionello? Is he going to murder his new brother in law. Does his sister want to be with him as well? We find all of this out during the course of this almost fascinating 90min film.
Now I am being funny, and making it out to be almost a comedy but it is not. Its also not exactly a horror movie, although that’s the crowd that has embraced it over the years, primarily for the serial killer aspect. No this is basically a sleaze film, a very slow paced one. It’s a good film, as its actually pretty interesting, but it’s a sleaze film none the less. To give you an example, when it was edited for its German release dialogue was removed but more nudity was added.
I wont lie, I never heard of this film but when I found out Severin was putting it out I knew it had to be a good one. A masterful transfer on their part everything looks awesome. Everything is clear and the audio is fantastic. Sadly as this is such a lost film we were treated to no extras on this release, but that’s ok because I mean do you really need any on a film like this.
A strange mix of, well, everything, this is definitely a film to check out. Horror and exploitation fans should really like this odd blend of serial killer meets sex demon romp. Pick yours up today.
Overall 2.5 out of 5 Stars!