Who doesn’t love a good exploitation film? Better yet how about a “Nunsploitation” film? Yes there were/are films like that. One of the most notable was 1975’s Santanico Pandemonium. And yes before you ask, the film, or at the least the character was the basis for the character Santanico Pandemonium in From Dusk Till Dawn. It’s a very atmospheric little shocker that’s definitely worth watching.
Santanico Pandemonium is all about the battle between good and evil. Sister Maria is the most religious and pure nuns in her convent. One day she is approached by a naked man offering her an apple to which after some great shock refuses. The problem here is the guy offers her one again, and again, he even follows her back to the convent to offer it to her. She starts going a little Waco at this point seeing Satan everywhere she turns. She decides she should cleanse herself of these evil visions and puts a barb wire crown of thorns around her waist and starts whipping herself. Thank God that a couple of nuns some to her room to tell here one of their cows is sick (Maria used to be a vet). She goes to treat it and again Satan is there with an apple.
Things go even crazier as a nun begins seducing Maria only to be revealed as Satan. After this weird encounter she figures to hell with it and just gives in. She stars raping and killing a few nuns, a villager, the works. She goes full on possessed and seems to love every minute of it. As rough as it sounds its actually tamer than some of the other nunsploitation films out there. Not saying this is not a vile film, with a very horrifying final act because it is.
The film moves at a very slow and methodical pace which helps to elevate the tension and turn this into part psychological drama which is not something you usually find in these types of films. Don’t worry though it still has ample amounts of blood and nudity. The score is haunting to say the least and really helps to set the tone for the film.
Mondo Macabro has done an amazing job on this transfer. This is by far and away the cleanest print I have ever seen of this film. The dark night scenes look gorgeous and do not suffer from that dreaded blue tint you can find in a lot of transfers. The art work is fantastic and the audio sounds great coming through your surround sound. This is a great film that’s only better with this transfer. Its even got a nice amount of special features
Two different HD presentations of the film
In Spanish with optional English subtitles
Brand new audio commentary by film historians Kat Ellinger and Samm Deighan
Filmed interview with co-director & writer
Mondo Macabro is definitely a label to watch as they put out some really great titles, and there transfers are out of this world. This is a must watch films for fans of horror and exploitation so the combination of the two definitely make this a must have addition to your collection.
Overall 3 out of 5 Stars