Wednesday, May 30, 2012

R.I.P.: Lina Romay, Part II

Lina Romay, the Spanish cult actress that was to the infamous cult director Jess Franco what angora was to Ed Wood Jr., died of cancer on 15 February 2012.
Here at a wasted life, we decided at the time to honor her with a career review, a decision that – as we previously mentioned in Part I – has proven to be Sisyphean in proportions. Romay took part in an innumerable amount of celluloid projects, mostly for Franco but on occasion for other filmmakers as well, many of which were completed, some of which were not; many of which were never released outside of Spain or on DVD or video, some of which were never officially released at all; many of which have been reedited or reworked or retitled, and a number of them can probably be officially categorized as "lost" – an exact listing of all titles is probably impossible to create. Indeed, we culled our list from the imdb, a list that has already changed since we began this project.
This career review is thus hardly definitive. Aside from the projects added since it was begun, some films found on the initial list that couldn't be documented are not included herein. But as flawed as this review of films might be, it nevertheless offers a slight insight to the projects of Jess Franco's muse and life partner. May she rest in peace.

The first part of this career review is the blog entry of February 24, 2012, which you can find here.

Today, we present part two of the review below – part three can be found here.

Hellhole Women
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)

According to imdb, Lina Romay is "Rosa Almirall", who is listed in the credits as assistant director. Hellhole Women is a WIP film AKA as Sadomania, Hölle der Lust and Prisoners of the Flesh and stars everyone's favorite transsexual (after Amanda Lear), Ajita Wilson – who, minus her hair and wearing a fake moustache, in one scene even plays the young man who's having sex with Lucas (Jesus Franco). Franco once said the popular Italian Fumetti comics were the inspiration for this film – a believable statement, to say the least.
DVD Drive-In, which says "this is also an ably produced little Franco flick, with excellent location photography (the girl-on-girl battle at sundown is breathtaking) and top-notch editing," comments: "Feel like gettin' down 'n dirty? Want a movie that packs lesbians, bestiality, Count Zaroff-esque human hunts? Look no further than sleaze master Jess Franco's Sadomania, a film from his less-than-appreciated early 80s period. [T]his WIP epic isn't as nauseating as Franco's Barbed Wire Dolls and not as professional as 99 Women (1969 / trailer), but it falls snugly somewhere in-between and is definitely one hell of a rollercoaster ride!"
The plot? Newlyweds Michael (Ángel Caballero) and Tara (Ursula Buchfellner) pullover in the middle of nowhere for some roadside sex, unwittingly pulling onto the land of a sleazy women's prison. "Arrested," Tara gets locked up for being a drug abuser while Michael manages to escape and goes for help. While he's gone, his wife is sold and the various women are abused and misused...

RockShockPop says "The flimsy plot is held together by a succession of depraved scenes of sex, violence, sexual violence, bestiality, lesbianism, rape, torture, and all around nastiness. It’s almost as if the storyline exists simply to propel the more base aspects of the film and it wouldn’t surprise me at all if the film was simply constructed around these scenes." Ajita Wilson, born George Wilson, died in a car wreck in 1987.

Bloody Moon
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)

According to imdb, Lina Romay is "Rosa Almirall", who is listed in the credits as assistant director on this gory slasher film aka, as among other titles, Die Säge Des Todes (the literal translation of the German title is "The Saw of Death"); in its uncut form, it is still banned in Germany. Cult Reviews says "Franco throws quite a bit of gratuitous nudity  and a decent amount of gore and blood in a film that turns into a 'whodunnit' towards the end of the film’s satisfying climax."
Murder scene:
My Duck Is Dead explains the plot: "Miguel (Alexander Waechter), a young man with a horribly disfigured face, goes on a rampage at a masquerade party and rapes a girl. He then brutally hacks up the young woman with a pair of scissors. Miguel is institutionalized at a mental asylum for five years. Afterward, he is released into the care of his sister, Manuela (Nadja Gerganoff). Along with their wheelchair-bound mother, they operate a boarding school for young woman, called Europe's International Youth-Club Boarding School of Languages, on the Spanish resort of Costa Del Sol. Miguel is intrigued by Angela (Olivia Pascal), a long-haired brunette, whom he first saw on the train ride from the sanitarium. [...] Bloody Moon is [...] definitely a highly entertaining and gruesome flick that should not be missed by fans of gory European Horror exploitation. For Franco standards, this film does not feature a lot of sleaze, but even more gruesome brutality and graphic gore in exchange."


The Story of Linda
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)
According to imdb, Lina Romay is "Rosa Almirall", who is listed in the credits as assistant director; some of the aka names of the film include Linda, Captive Women, Die nackten Superhexen vom Rio Amore, Linda, de stoeipoes Netherlands, and Orgy of the Nymphomaniacs. Supposedly footage of this film was edited into Otto Retzer's Babystrich im Sperrbezirk (1983), which features David Bowie's former favorite transvestite Romy Haag (né Edouard Frans Verba).
Plot, according to My Best Video Collection: "Betsy Norman (Ursula Buchfellner) is a happy assistant at a luxurious Spanish hotel. Sheila (Raquel Evans), the hotel owner, caters for all wishes of her clientele with another lucrative business, the brothel 'Rio Amore' where clients from all over the world come to relax with the girls and watch the sado-masochistic shows. Linda (Katja Bienert), Betsy's sister, is drugged and forced to work as a prostitute there." Here at Daily Motion is the fab nude lesbian scene in which Linda says goodbye to her boarding school roommate. As points out, however, Katja Bienert was somewhat underage when she made this "sexploitation/sleaze/roughie" – namely, 14. The Story of Linda was co-scripted by Erich Tomek, who not only co-wrote Franco's Bloody Moon, but also helped write that classic Italo Alien rip-off, Contamination (1980 / trailer).

Sex Is Crazy
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina Romay, credited as "Candy Coster," plays "Mrs. Foncesca." Original title: El Sexo Esta Loco. My Duck is Dead says: "Life starts to imitate art when an actress who stage show involves aliens impregnating her encounters aliens in search of fertile women to help repopulate their planet. If any Jess Franco film truly lives up to its title, it would be Sex in Crazy. This film is definitely crazy and not just because the mixing of sex with aliens. The film opens and ends with Lina Romay's character being screwed by aliens while an audience is watching. The plot as it progresses then reveals that is was all a stage show. The bulk of the film focuses around two swinger couples and their sexual adventures. Then Franco shifts back to the weird alien vibe he started with only to briefly abandon it until the film's ending, which involves those pesky aliens. So were there aliens, or were they just a figment of Lina Romay’s character's imagination? The film never makes clear what is real and what is not."
At imdb, good Ol' Michael Elliott of Louisville, KY, says: "Extremely bizarre Jess Franco flick about an actress (Lina Romay) who puts on sex shows with a story involving aliens who kidnap girls and knock them up. The first gag is that the women, due to the super sperm, can deliver 600 babies an hour. The second gag is that real aliens see this and decide to get in on the action. This is probably the best sex comedy I've seen from Franco. Romay, when she's not showing off her sex talent, can be very funny with a light comic touch and she gets to deliver that several times throughout the film. [...] The alien make up at the start of the film is cheap but very effective looking." 

Les filles de Copacabana
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina Romay as "Lia." There's not a lot of info about this film out there, which recently enjoyed a fifth-rate DVD release in the USA as The Girls of Copacabana. You may never have seen the movie, but we all know Barry Manilow's theme song to it. (Ha-ha: just kidding.) The ubiquitous synopsis found online is generally credited to Jason Buchanan: "Cult legend Lina Romay stars in director Jess Franco's sexy erotic drama following a trio of French students who leave Paris behind to experience love and lust in Brazil."
10K Bullets, which calls the movie "a sexual coming of age film", does not like the film, saying: "Visually the film is bland when compared to Franco’s most inspired films. To Franco's credit he does know how to photograph women. The shots of women on the beach and close up of their assets are this films strongest asset. The film is also padded with footage from the carnival in Brazil. The weak plot which is essentially just a series of sexual encounters that offers no advancement in the plot."

Aberraciones sexuales de una mujer casada
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)
Dare one suggest that Lina Romay was never truthful about her age? In this film, playing the mother of George (Antonio Vasco), she is theoretically on 27 years old in real life – so why does she actually look old enough to really be his Mom? Aberraciones sexuales de una mujer casada is the first – and Spanish – version of Diary of a Desperate Housewife, Franco's French film of the next year which is both cut differently and has additional scenes added by the credited director, Oliver Mathot, a highly active sleaze actor who died in 2011. Both this is and the French version features mostly the same cast, and both are available in German as Cecilia – that be the name of the films' main character, played by Muriel Montossé. Specifically about Aberraciones sexuales de una mujer casada, over at imdb, Pierre-Alexandre Buisson of Montreal, Canada, says "Wonderfully shot and wrapped in a warm score by Daniel White, this Franco flick is a must see. Shot in Portugal, in a forest similar to the one adorning the family castle in Virgin Among the Living Dead, it has a timeless feel, and the theme, centering around 'open sexuality' inside a couple, is universal. It is basically the story of Cecilia (Muriel Montossé), a housewife raped by three greasy thugs. She ends up enjoying the assault and it opens new horizons for her. She convinces her husband that seeing other people will improve their relationship, and off they are! Orgies, rituals and lots of erotic scenes captured by Franco's sensual zooms later, they start dealing with the downside of sleeping around... [...] The movie, overall, is a guilty pleasure, a pleasure that a newcomer could find questionable, but that the true Franco connoisseur will approve, and most of all share." For more info on basically the same film, go down a few films to Diary of a Desperate Housewife.

El fontanero, su mujer, y otras cosas de meter
(1981, dir. Carlos Aured)
Lina Romay, plays "Julia" in her first film for director Carlos Aured, who is famous primarily for directed five films starring the legendary Paul Naschy (The Werewolf Versus the Vampire Woman [1971 / trailer], Horror Rises from the Tomb [1973 / trailer], Curse of the Devil [1974 / trailer], House of Psychotic Women [1974], and The Mummy's Revenge [1973]). This flick here, however, is an "erotic comedy" – though going by the Spanish-language (simulated sex) clips of this film that can be found all over the web – like here at – the humor is rather flat and the fake sex anything but erotic. Over at Movie House Reviews, however, they see things slightly differently, saying that "The film is 99% nudity and simulated sex, with a little humor to separate the sex scenes. This is the only vintage Spanish sex farce I have seen that finds the balance between erotic and funny in the same way as so many successful Italian, German and English sex farces of that era." Plot? Well, what do you think it is in a film whose title translates, more or less, into "The Plumber, His Wife… And Other Thing to Put Inside"?
On imdb, Cianeto from Portugal, who says "This one has the dubious honor of being the worst DVD that I possess" and also points out that the film "is not actual XXX porn [because] hardcore pornography was illegal in Spain at the time," details the plot as thus: "This is a comedy about a plumber (Ricardo Diaz) who, after finding is wife (Montserrat Prous) in bed with his best mate (Antonio Parrilla), engages in a series of sexual encounters with about all the oh-so-lonely housewives and other women that required his services." The film enjoys minor infamy for the scene in which, when the plumber is unable to satisfy his friend's wife (Lina Romay) with his own rod, she ends up making do with the rod of a plunger. 
A scene from the movie:

La chica de las bragas transparentes
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)
LIna Romay as the hooker Suzy in this film, aka as Pick-Up Girls and The Girl in the Transparent Panties and, possibly Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties – a name also claimed as an AKA for Franco's Ópalo de fuego: Mercaderes del sexo (1980).
Intro to (a)
Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties:
Over at Film Affinity, they offer the following plot description: "Private eye Al Crosby (Antonio Mayans) is paid by millionaire Harry Feldman to take his place at a meeting with Emilio, a gangster. He is drugged and photographed in compromising positions by two hookers, Suzy and Bijou (Doris Regina), then he is nearly killed by Mrs. Feldman (Rosa Valenty). Al tries to blackmail Mrs. Feldman, and he is beaten up by three women and forced to tell of Harry's whereabouts, leading to Harry's murder. Al enlists the help of Harry's mistress, Coco, plus Suzy and Bijou, whom Al gets out of prison, to expose Mrs Feldman as having inherited money by devious ways and being a brothel owner."
Good ol' Michael Elliott from Louisville, KY – he's a dedicated Franco viewer if there ever was one – gives a bit more detail on imdb: "Private Eye Al Crosby (Robert Foster) is hired to do some tracking down and he gets the help of two hookers. At first Crosby thinks this is your typical murder hunt but it turns out a woman has hired him to find her missing penis. You see, she was once a man and after her operation, she returned home with her penis in a jar and someone stole it. Yep, this is a Franco movie. That big revelation doesn't come to the end, which is a shame because it would have been a lot more fun if the PI was going after that instead of the murder plot we have to sit through. The story makes no sense whatsoever so the film becomes very boring. There's a great music score by Pablo Villa and Franco and of course there are countless sex scenes with all sorts of beautiful women getting naked. There's an erotic threesome at the start of the film as well. Franco is known for leaving mistakes in his films if they come off as something that might happen and one of these is the highlight in this film. During the threesome, Romay is trying to get Foster's pants off but both of them are struggling to do so and they finally break out of character and just start laughing."

L'abîme des morts vivants
(1981, dir. Jess Franco)

Aka The Treasure of the Living Dead and Oasis of the Living Dead and a dozen other titles. Jess Franco bailed from the film Zombie Lake (trailer), which was then taken over by the equally legendary Jean Rollin, to make this film instead (in two alternate language versions, actually). All films are amazingly bad and, in their own ways, perversely entertaining, but Franco's Oasis of the Zombies does get more boring more quickly, if only because it lacks the excessive amount of unshaven bush found in Zombie Lake.
Wikipedia claims that "Franco filmed a 'Spanish version' simultaneously with the French version (under the title La tumba de los Muertos Vivientes), probably to placate Lina Romay (since the French producer had chosen other actors to be in the 'real version'). Only the director's cut (the Spanish version) includes scenes with Lina Romay and Eduardo Fajardo, but that version has never been released outside of Spain." To what extent that is true is open to conjecture, but in the public domain version of Oasis of the Dead found below, Kurt's wife is played by an unattractive "Myriam Landson" – so, theoretically, it probably shouldn't even be part of this review. (Tuff titties.) For a wasted life's less than positive review of that film, click on the title above... strangely enough, we must admit that we really don't remember disliking it as much as we obviously did. Give it a go yourself. In the US, the movie seems to be public domain.
Full film:

Zombie 5
(1982, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina is Helen, the Housekeeper in this film AKA under a half-dozen names including the Revenge in the House of Usher, that name due to the fact that (a very few) aspects of the film were taken from the similarly named tale by Edgar Allen Poe – as Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings rightly points out, the "utter sloppiness" of the opening credit "Based on the novel 'The Fall of house of Usher' by Edgard Allan Poe [...] certainly shows that someone didn't give a flying fudgesicle stick about this movie." Giving the plot as "A former student visits the home of the ailing Dr. Usher, who has been trying to revive his daughter with blood transplants from unwilling female donors," FMM&R is of the opinion that Zombie 5 "is Franco at his least inspired. It takes very little out of the Poe story; the only real elements in common are the name of Usher, the fact that someone comes to visit him, and that the house collapses when the main character dies; apart from that, it's just Franco going to the Dr. Orloff well one more time, and this movie even recycles about fifteen minutes of footage from the first Orloff movie," The Awful Dr. Orloff (1962 / trailer). Neurosis, the French version originally distributed by Eurocine and now available on DVD in English-speaking countries, supposedly has different scenes added. The original US video title Zombie 5 was appropriated in 1988 by Claudio Lattanzi for the US release – as Zombie 5: Killing Birds (trailer) – for his Italo zombie flick Killing Birds – Raptors.

Diary of a Desperate Housewife
(1982, dir. Olivier Mathot & Jess Franco)
Diary of a Desperate Houswife, aka Cecilia, is the French version of Jesus Franco's Aberraciones sexuales de una mujer casada (1981), supposedly augmented with a few additional scenes shot by Olivier Mathot and with less Lina Romay, who now play a cabaret owner instead of George's mother. My Duck Is Dead quotes Louisville, KY's very own' Michael Elliott in full for their plot description of the movie: "After being gang raped and then having sex with her husband, a woman discovers that marital sex is a lot better when the relationship is open. This is an extremely rare film from Jess Franco but it's really a straight love story and not a sleazy effort. Franco treats the subject matter with full respect and tries his best to tell an honest story about marriage and the film remains interesting throughout, although not too much really goes on."

Apocalipsis sexual
(1982, dir. Carlos Aured & Sergio Bergonzelli)
The second and last film Romy made with Carlos Aured, with whom she made El fontanero, su mujer, y otras cosas de meter... the year previously. This time around, it's a horror film. Co-director Sergio Bergonzelli is unknown for films such as Sick-a-Pathics (1996 / trailer), Delirio di sangue (1988 / trailer) and In the Folds of the Flesh (1970 / trailer). I'm in a Jess Franco State of Mind  says: "If you haven't seen this, it's a way, way, way, way out hardcore crime roughie very loosely based on the Patty Hearst case. Only this time it's in Spain. A group of criminals led by Ricardo Diaz break into a vacant villa where they hold an heiress for ransom. [The film] is actually a pretty interesting oddity with good performances by Diaz, Romay and the late, great Wilson. One steamy interlude involves the two stars of Macumba Sexual getting involved with a candle! There's plenty of group sex and offensive sexual violence. The film has a somewhat droll sense of humor and a philosophical twist." That blogspot also asserts that Sergio Bergonzelli was not involved in the film, despite what imdb says. According to "There are two different versions of the movie. The Spanish DVD contains the softcore version, whereas the Italian VHS shows the hardcore version. In the latter every sex scene (and there are many) has been extended or replaced by HC material, on the other hand the story has been reduced. This is why all in all the HC version is the shorter one." Obviously enough, going by the poster above, the film features the great Ajita Wilson (né George Wilson) as one of the kidnappers. 24 NSFW minutes of sex excerpts can be seen here, but it ain't anything exciting. Co-director Sergio Bergonzelli, who started his career as an actor in the early 50s, moved onto directing westerns by 1960, and ended his career as a productive director of so-bad-they're-good horror and sex sleazefests such as In the Folds of the Flesh (1971 / full film), Our Lady of Lust (1972 / psychedelic scene), Taxi Love (1976 / trailer), Porco Mondo (1978 / opening credits), Blood Delirium (1988 / trailer) and more, more, more.

Mi conejo es el mejor
(1982, dir. Ricardo Palacios)
Aka My Rabbit is the Best One – with a little imagination, you can probably figure out what (non-Brazilian-waxed) rabbit is being talked about. The directorial debut of Ricardo Palacios, a prolific actor seen in such fun films as Coming At Ya! (1981 / trailer), The Blood of Fu Manchu (1968 / trailer), Night of the Werewolf (1981 / Spanish trailer) and many more – and who even, in 1986, worked in an "adult" Jess Franco film featuring Romay, Fury in the Tropic (aka Orgasmo perverso).
Movie House Commentary gives this softcore S&M/B&D a positive review, stating "Lina Romay was at her young prime, and demonstrated that she could act. Much of the full frontal exposure is very well lit. For the kinkier among you, there is lots of bondage and whipping, and plenty of the old favorite, the lesbian kiss. The Spanish clearly know how to make erotica." The full NSFW lesbian muff-diving credit sequence (with Romay!) that opens the film – underscored by a truly great and cheesy organ soundtrack – can be found here at the beating that the jealous guard gives Romay when they are caught is what drives her to run away from the reformatory and go to Madrid, where, according to MHC, "A handsome stranger, Carlos (Emilio Linder), comes to the rescue, offering her a hot bath, dinner and a warm bed. Everything seems on the up and up, and his maid (Elena Alverez) is put in charge of getting her bathed and settled into a room. Her first clue that something may be wrong is when she wakes up in the middle of the night, and finds Emilio beating then screwing the maid. After a few days in the house, Lina wants to play, too — even if it entails bondage and discipline." See the film if you want to know more – it's available on Spanish-language DVD.

Emmanuelle Exposed
(1982, dir. Jess Franco)
According to imdb, Lina Romay worked as assistant director on this "Emmanuelle" film aka Las orgías inconfesables de Emmanuelle; while this "erotic" film itself is very less than unexceptional, the synth soundtrack is torturous. Don't we wish all women were as easy as Emmanuelle to satisfy?
My Duck Is Dead says: "This is Emmanuelle as you've never seen her before – a unique take on the insatiable sexual adventuress courtesy of Jess Franco! French TV star Muriel Montossé (billed here as Vicky Adams) follows in the uninhibited footsteps of Sylvia Kristel and Laura Gemser as Emmanuelle, exploring carnal fulfillment in the most unlikely places. But after an impromptu live-on-stage lesbian exhibition with a sultry stripper, her friends think she may be out of control. Will she resist the allure of every extreme erotic opportunity that comes her way or can she seduce her partners to submit to [aka] The Inconfessable Orgies of Emmanuelle? Known to late-night cable connoisseurs as Emmanuelle Exposed [...], this lascivious erotic masterpiece is now fully restored from the recently discovered original negative and presented totally uncut & uncensored." Okay, they saw a different film than we did – but then, we also didn't make it to the end of this turkey.
DVD Drive-In, on the other hand, probably saw the same film we did, for they describe Emmanuelle Exposed as "bottom of the barrel junk" [...] "made up of lengthy, boring sex scenes, slightly enlivened by the presence of lovely blonde starlet Muriel Montosse [...]. Thoroughly unremarkable."

Sangre en mis zapatos
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Aka Blood on My Shoes; Lina Romay is "Paquita la Fina." Numerous sources across the web, just like imdb, claim that this film is based on one of the stories from Edgar Wallace's Sanders of the River, but none of the sources seem to have seen the film. (Considering that the Sanders of the River tales are set in Colonial Africa, one must also wonder just how much of Wallace's book is actually found in this film set in 1980s.) Even printed sources such as, for example, Michael R. Pitts's Horror Film Stars make this statement but say little more about the film. Tropic Twilight Video offers this brief description of the film: "Jess Franco’s mystery/adventure/comedy loosely based on an Edgar Wallace story. A couple of investigators try to locate some stolen money."
Sideshow Video skips the Wallace connection but offers more detail – and thus ends up sounding as if they saw a different film than Tropic Twilight Video: "[An] espionage thriller – several International spies mistakenly believe the Paquita a cabaret singer is a spy who is planning to meet a German scientist who has escaped from Russia. Overall a poor blend of thriller and horror genres. Not Jess Franco's strongest work by any means. Lacks his distinct production style from earlier work with just the slow-pace and confusing dialogue left to fast forward through."

Los blues de la calle Pop (Aventuras de Felipe Malboro, volumen 8)
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina Romay is present both as assistant director – credited as "Rosa María Almirall" – and as Candy Coster, who plays the part of "Jenara Butterfly." Few people seem to have seen this film, as it only ever had a Spanish-language release, but a translation of the plot description from filmaffinity delivers the following: "A famous private detective, Philip Marlboro (Antonio Mayans), is hired by a young woman to find her boyfriend, Macho Jim (José Llamas, who in real life later fell victim to AIDS*), student of economics, who has disappeared without a trace."
Robert Monell of I'm in A Jess Franco State of Mind seems to be one of the few, the brave, outside of Spain that have seen the film, and he claims that "This witty and visually striking neo-noir parody is one of Franco's personal favorites, and it's easy to see why." Monell has a nice, in-depth and very long review of the film here on his blog, but to simply present a few aspects he mentions: "[The] 1983 proto-punk obscurity Los blues de la calle Pop [...] is both mainstream and experimental in signification/intent. In a way, Jess Franco may be one of the pioneers of Punk Cinema, if there is such a thing. [...] Felipe Marlboro [...] is a seedy private investigator who takes up a missing person case [...] in the punk infested coastal resort. It's a sinister, retro place [...] which seems to be situated in a time warp where all the men seem to hang out in a smoky bar decorated with posters of Bogart and Mae West, waiting for trouble to erupt. The residents of this corrupt town all look like they base their fashion sense on 1980's MTV punk rock videos. The men look like either Sid Vicious or a member of A Flock of Seagulls, and the women sport the slutty attire and pouty sexuality of the late Robert Palmer's back-up vocalists in the music video of Addicted to Love. [...] The visual style of the film is comic strip array of primary colors and weird camera angles."
*It should be said, this is an undocumented "fact" once stated by Franco but never confirmed by anyone.
Robert Palmer – Addicted to Love:

Robert Palmer- Addicted To Love von ghovingh

Botas negras, látigo de cuero
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Another Franco PI film, once again with Antonio Mayans (billed as Robert Foster) playing the private eye, this time named Al Pereira; "Candy Coster" is there as well, of course. The plot, according to some Spanish site: "Pereira, a man of dubious morality, is hired to retrieve some compromising photos of a married woman ('Coster')."
At imdb, for a change Michael Elliott of Louisville, KY, totally dishes a Franco film, saying that "The film is incredibly slow, drawn out and there's really nothing too interesting going on. Foster has never been a favorite of mine and even Romay seems bored, although she comes to life during a rather sexy lesbian scene towards the end of the movie. There's an out-of-place hardcore scene thrown in, which does nothing and the S&M bondage stuff doesn't fly either."
Also on imdb, Brian D. Horrorwitz of Maryland disagrees with Michael in every way, saying: "I have to disagree [...]. To me, Lina Romay is still looking good and the blonde hair suits her! [...] She plays a hot stripper who uses her 'goods' to manipulate Al Pereira into doing some dangerous detective work for her. There are NOT any hardcore scenes but it does come close at one point. This would rate a soft X probably but still it is pretty raunchy and not at all boring!"


La noche de los sexos abiertos
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Yet another PI film from Franco, again starring Antonio Mayans (billed as Robert Foster) as the private eye; Lina Romay is billed by her real name this time, and plays Moira. At imdb, Michael Elliott of Louisville, KY, gives it 3 out of 4 stars and says: "Sadly I had to view this in Spanish without any subtitles, but even though I couldn't follow the plot too well this turned out to be one of the best films I've seen from this period in the director's filmography. For those who have never seen a 'well made' Franco movie, then you might want to check this one out because it's very well done and features a terrific score by Daniel White and some fine performances. The film noir qualities aren't the same as you'd expect from those classic RKO films because Franco's usual touches of nudity and sex are on full display. The woman who gets murdered is first tortured with a hot iron to the crotch so this will certainly let you know you're watching a Franco film. The style of the film is also very good as Franco doesn't do as many of his zoom shots. The film also features an incredibly surreal opening ten minutes, which are among the greatest thing I've seen from the director." The plot, as far as we've been able to figure out from computer-generated translations of Spanish texts involves the stripper Moira (Romay), who is convinced by a friend to help him defraud an old Nazi German of information about the whereabouts of some hidden gold. But there are other people who also know of the gold...


Diamonds of Kilimandjaro
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Another "Franco" cannibal film featuring the nubile nudity of (at the time) jailbait Katja Bienert; Romay is there in the non-jungle scenes as her rich, dying mother who wants her daughter back, as Monsters at Play explains: "Diana (Bienert) and her godfather (Daniel White) are passengers in an airplane that crashes in a remote jungle. The local tribesmen accept them as 'gods who fell out of the sky,' and they live together for many years. Diana grows up happy, and topless, in this setting until a mining expedition discovers she is still alive. After hearing of her well-being, Diana's dying mother Hermine (Romay) funds the miners' return expedition to bring Diana home. But as the team returns to the jungle, each member has his or her own personal agenda."
Eccentric Cinema says that in an interview with Robert Monell (of I'm in a Jess Franco State of Mind), Franco said that Eurociné hired an additional cast and shot new scenes and then reedited the film. According to imdb, the Franco version, available only in Spain, clocks in at 83 minutes, while the French version (with new footage by Olivier Mathot, who appears as Mathieu in the film) clocks in at 95. Also at imdb, integ of Germany says "A Jess Franco-movie from the early 80s [...]: actors incapable of acting, incredibly dumb dialogue and a whole lot of joyful nudity (and downright disgusting sex scenes with totally unattractive guys and girls). Which I regard as absolutely worthwhile and entertaining – but that's just my personal opinion. The story? Story?? Oh, well, it's kind of a remake of Tarzan, plus some adventure and cannibal stuff. But basically it's about seeing Katja Bienert nude, and it works when it comes down to that. [...] Franco has done better than this. Katja Bienert has, too. But the jungle has never looked more corny."

En busca del dragón dorado
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina Romay was the assistant director of this "James P. Johnson" adventure kiddy flick with tigers and kung fu loosely based on the Poe tale The Gold Bug. It seems to be another film that almost no one in the US has seen other than Robert Monell, who says that top billed "'Li Yung' (real name: César Antonio Serrano) has relatively few scenes as the ghostly 'martial arts genius' who emerges deux ex machina to provide the two girls who are the film's central characters with some help." Atlas Visuals doesn't seem to have seen the film, and instead ever-so-slightly rewrites the only user review of the film on imdb (by Antonio Herz of Milano, Italy)  to say "The story is about a little girl (Flavia Hervas) who becomes involved in the search for an ancient treasure, hidden by Oriental natives to prevent strangers from locating it. The immortal original tale is crazily moved into a kids-oriented martial arts movie, which mixes the Tarzan classic spirit with the gruesome humor of its Spanish director." In Herz's original review, the man goes on to state that En busca del dragón dorado "is one of the funniest, craziest, most revolutionary films ever made in Spain. Its mixture of genres and influences shows Franco's master hand. A cult classic. 10 out of 10!"

Confesiones íntimas de una exhibicionista
(1983, dir. Lina Romay [Candy Coster])
Romay, once again billed as "Candy Coster," is both the director and star of this movie, though she supposedly had uncredited assistance in the former from Jess Franco. Over at, "Bob Monel" suggests that Franco is the real director, and that he "may have hidden behind her name for quota/tax reasons as [he] has hidden behind other such names as Clifford Brown, etc for the same purposes." Also on, Nzoog Wahrlfhehen says that Romay/Coster plays "the role of a nightclub sex performer initially seen in one of her acts, as she proceeds to present herself to the audience in voice-over, paving the way for the long flashback that is the film's main body. Candy (for this is the character's name) awakened sexually in her teens while watching her sister Pepi (Juana de la Morena in sexual rapture with her Argentinean lover (José Ferro), until one day (a common occurrence in such films) she crossed into the diegesis of the 'movie' she was watching and joined in the fun. This was to be the beginning of several relationships: first, an unsuccessful one with a gay writer (Mayans), then a successful but tragic union with a liberal woman (Jasmina Bell) and her husband (Tony Skios)." Wahrlfhehen also points out that the film was made in the last year before the legalization of porn in Spain, and that "the makers, both because of the playing out of the old form [softcore porn] and the imminence of the new one, have pushed this one as far as possible in the direction of hardcore, both in the wealth of sexual encounters featured and the fact that Franco seems to be essaying the curious formula of 'hard softcore' (almost there, but not quite)."

La casa de las mujeres perdidas
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Aka Perversión en la isla perdida – another Franco film that never seems to have made in across the waters, described by Robert Monell as an "ultra rare 1982 melodrama [which] once again illustrates the director's strategic deployment of mirrors as a way of opening out a film into three or more dimensions and evidences his use of a cubist style as a way of representing a complex character matrix." Romay, as Candy Coster, is there for the ride as the character Desde. Monell is one of the few who has seen the film, and his review of it can be found here. To quote Lars Jacobsson of Sweden who, on imdb, admits to having seen only the first hour, La casa de las mujeres perdidas "seems to be some kind of perverse, kinky, black comedy/ironic family-drama/soft porno" about a family "living together on an isolated island" where stuff happens "like the daughter masturbating in front of her father (I'd say a good third of the film consists of Lina jacking off), the mother forcing her children to take part in S/M games or Lina giving her retarded sister a hand job. [...] I don't know whether I should consult a film buff or a psychiatrist, but why the hell did this film somehow remind me of a perverted Douglas Sirk?"

Gemidos de placer
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina is there not only as second unit director, but she plays the part of Julia in this semi-remake of Franco's 1980's Sinfonía erotica. The plot of this erotic thriller, which is likewise based on a tale by de Sade, deals with (to quote Film Affinity's description of the film's AKA title Cries of Pleasure) "A Man (Antonio Mayans) invites a Woman (Romay) to his house to live with him, just before the arrival of his wife (Elisa Vela) who is coming back from the insane asylum."
Someone gets arty with Gemidos de placer: 

My Duck is Dead elaborates by simply reprinting almost everything babycarrot67 of Columbus, Ohio, says on imdb: "Franco makes the most of the obviously low budget. The scenery is beautifully filmed, and by scenery I speak of the beautiful surroundings of the villa where the film was shot (i.e., the ocean, mountains, etc.), the decor of the villa (the hanging beads, room dividers, and window shots), and of course the usually nude actors engaged in (usually) a threesome of passion and lust that is evil yet somehow life-affirming. Franco's long camera takes, some lasting ten minutes or more, are perfectly executed and demonstrate that he is not the clunky, zoom-lens-using maniac as is his reputation. The very attractive cast perform their roles well and the dialog sequences, what few there are, are so sincerely portrayed that the biting, inhuman dialog is alternately erotic and frightening. The torture death of the servant is violently erotically charged, and the lust-filled, three-way orgy that follows is akin to a literary masterpiece written in moans and writhing bodies. The Marquis de Sade would be very proud, and anyone should be proud to view this adults-only drama."

The Hotel of Love Affairs
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina Romay is there as second unit director and, as Candy Coster, she plays "Eva Bombon" ("bombon," by the way, is South American slang for ass – that great electo cumbia song El Bombon Asesino, here's a version by Los Palmeras, is basically about a killer ass.) The Hotel of Love Affairs, aka El hotel de los ligues is a softcore remake of Franco's 1979 hardcore flick Elles font tout (That Certain Taste), but without the hardcore and hairy in-n-out: three couples with sex problems at a hotel get shown the ropes by a porn star (Romay).

Macumba sexual
(1983, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina Romay is there as second unit director and, as Candy Coster, plays a lead part; Ajita Wilson is also there for the ride in this loose remake (shot back to back with La mansión de los muertos vivientes) of Franco's, uh, classic flick Vampiros Lesbos (1971 / trailer). About the film, DVD Drive-In says: "In Macumba sexual, Alice Brooks (Romay/Coster) and her boring writer boyfriend (Robert Foster/Antonio Mayans) are staying at a hotel in the Canary Islands, were they are relaxing and enjoying a lot of lovemaking. Alice has wild, sexual dreams about a tall black woman who leashes about a naked women and a naked man as if they were pets on all fours. Leary about what these dreams actually mean, Alice goes about in the desert to search for Princess Tara Obongo (Wilson) on some sort of real estate business. But the Princess is actually the 'Goddess of Unspeakable Lust,' practicing black magic and seducing Alice, and later her boyfriend, as captives in her world of uninhibited orgies involving her two animal-like sex slaves. Most viewers will frown upon Macumba sexual's plotless absurdity, but those who understand Franco's world of sleaze-as-art cinema will most likely appreciate this 80-minute 'fever dream' filled with exotic locations and endless softcore sequences. Romay is seen nude even more so here, often making untamed love to Foster and Wilson (the latter two also 'do' each other). [...] The beautifully shot but zoom-ridden film includes a bizarre but appropriate score by Franco himself (billed as 'Pablo Villa'), and he also appears as an imbecile character under the credit 'Juan G. Cabral'."
The same NSFW 15-minute excerpt of a twisting and turning naked Coster/Romay/Alice going at it alone and with Foster/Mayans and Princess Obongo and Obongo's slaves can be found on porn sites all over the web, always embedded from xvideos.

Bahía blanca
(1984, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina Romay is there as second unit director and also plays the part of María in rare Franco film that few people have seen; over at The Latarnia Forum, someone by the name of SAlexLindsay is one of the few and, by the sound of it (and the look of the clip below) the lucky. SAlexLindsay says: "To me, Bahia Blanca occupies a similar place in Franco's filmography as does The Ballad of Cable Hogue (1970 / trailer) in Sam Peckinpah's. In the midst of all the commercialized sex and violence that filled his 80s output, here Franco took time out to create something personal, in a quiet, peaceful setting. At least it seems peaceful at first, in the midst of the fisherman, island taverns and guitar music, the themes of crime, prostitution and murder are presented more subtly. The characters are nearly all repulsive, but the story unfolds gently in an almost 'soap-opera' like fashion. There is little sex and action, and a greater emphasis on drama. Franco is using much the same regular cast as he would use in raunchier films of this time, but here they are actually revealed to be very competent actors. Eva Leon is very convincing as Alida, the selfish murderess, who recklessly plays around with other people's lives, without thinking at all of the tragic consequences. Mayans is fantastic as Carlos, the stupid, ineffectual sheriff, whose association with Alida can only end in death, like a moth to a flame, (note, the recurring shot of the lantern through the film). [...] Both Alida and Carlos get what they deserve, but nonetheless they are both charismatic and likeable throughout the film. The moral characters in this story are Silvia (Analia Ivars) and her father, Leon (Trino Treves.) The arguments between them about Silvia's intention to marry a criminal are witty, and provide the comic relief. [...] Tony Skios plays crime lord, Raul Sebastian, very well, in a suave white suit, and can convey power with just a few words. [...] Of course, the most memorable example of this shot, is when Analia Ivars embarks on her revenge, in her full wedding dress, with a hunting rifle. We have seen this shot before in She Killed in Ecstasy (1971 / trailer), when Soledad Miranda travels across the water to the mainland to take revenge on the doctors who destroyed her husband. It is a very telling image, symbolic, over-the-top, operatic. Nobody would actually stand up in a little boat like this, but this is the visual language of a revenge tragedy, and it works! [...] Obviously, this film carries a weight of faults – bad stage-fighting, sloppy editing, dubbing etc. With a bit more post-production, Bahia Blanca could be more readily accepted by audiences who can't see beyond such faults. But the rest of us, can appreciate its wit, emotion and beauty."
4.5 minutes of
The Bride Wore White:

Camino solitario
(1984, dir. Jess Franco)
Another Franco film that no one has seen, with "Candice Coster" featured in a double role.  Eva Esteban (as Candice Coster). About the only online English-language mention we could find about the film was at the Marisa Mell blogspot, whence the following comes from: "Have you ever wondered why Marisa Mell and Jess Franco never worked together during the golden years of their careers? Well, they almost did once! This news appeared on the 'new projects' page in issue 115 of the Spanish magazine Pantallas y Escenarios in February, 1972. The film was going to be called The Lonesome Road and would co-star Barbara Bouchet. Obviously, the shoot never took place, and so the film buff suffers on two counts: 1) Jesús Franco's special sense of the erotic would have gelled exceptionally well with Mell's unique sensuality. 2) Marisa Mell would have added yet another piece to her collection of blonde-brunette double roles in the same film. How do I know this last bit? Because ten years later, Jess Franco filmed and produced the exact same story, but with different actors. It was called Camino Solitario, literally the same title as the original project, but in Spanish. Jess Franco's wife, Lina Romay, plays the part that would have been Mell's, and she plays both the beautiful, elegant platinum blond millionaire's wife, and her dark-haired, grunge, hippy sister. On the same token, Barbara Bouchet's would-be part as the elegant blonde's ex-lesbian lover, went to little-known Spanish actress Carmen Carrión. And lastly, the part of the detective, which Mark Damon was supposed to play 1972, ended up going to Antonio Mayans. [...] Camino Solitario isn't a bad film, in fact it stands out among the last few decades of Franco films. But, to be honest, when you watch Lina Romay playing the part, and you imagine Marisa Mell in the same role, you suffer!"

Night of 1,000 Sexes
(1984, dir. Jess Franco)
Aka Mil sexos tiene la noche – its real title, actually. This "erotic horror thriller" is a version of Franco's earlier film, Les cauchemars naissent la nuit (1970 / trailer), starring the attractive Diana Lorys, which Franco also did a version of in 1977 entitled Voodoo Passion (mass nekkid dance scene).
To quote My Duck is Dead, "Lina Romay, chubby like she just walked out of an Anders Zorn painting, plays Irena." At imdb, Carlos Lohan from Chile says that Night of 1,000 Sexes is "One of those obscure hypnotic efforts our beloved sleaze director Jesus Franco filmed after he returned to his native Spain in the 80s. Full of surreal situations, very explicit sex and a naked Lina Romay wandering around. This one is actually one of his all-time best. Beautifully filmed and very surreal, [...] Franco finally created a movie where reality melts into an erotic nightmare!" Plot, from imdb: "A telepathic nightclub act becomes the backdrop for murder."

¿Cuánto cobra un espía? 
(1984, dir. Jess Franco)
As "Rosa Almirall" Lina co-directed this film with her main squeeze, and under her real name she played the second lead, Ana. The film is aka Is Cobra a Spy? To roughly translate the plot as supplied in Spanish on Film Affinity, ¿Cuánto cobra un espía? is about "Newlyweds, Juan (Juan Soler) and Ana (Romay), embark on a trip despite having little money. They believe that when Juan releases a music composition he is working on, the problem will be solved. In Benicassim, where they have decided to stay, they meet various spies from various countries that, by mistake, will try to get Juan's composition, believing it to be the dangerous secret formula their respective nations all desire."
At imdb, Lars Jacobsson of Sweden seems to have seen the same film, saying "If you think that Lina Romay talking really fast in her whining, high-pitch 'comic'-voice mode ('mi queridooo... miiii queridooo!!!') is the height of comedy, then this is the film for you. Lina and her dorky new husband are on their honeymoon at a Spanish resort and unfortunately pick up two hitchhikers, who are really spies that hide secret microfilm in their car. And then of course lots of different parties are trying to get their hands on the microfilm, with lots of silly slapstick situations as result. Hardly any nudity, just slapstick, slapstick and more slapstick. I really tried to fight it, but halfway through I found myself starting to enjoy this at least a little bit, clearly a sign that the end is near for me."

Lilian (la virgen pervertida)
(1984, dir. Jess Franco)
According to imdb, this was the first legal hardcore pornographic film in Spain – reason enough to see it, we think. For a short, definitely NSFW scene of a three-way including Lilian (Katja Bienert), Irina (Romay – billed again as "Candy Coster") and some guy with hairy balls, go here to Classic Porn.
10K Bullets gives the plot of the film as follows: "After escaping her tormentors, [a] young woman named Lilian is rescued by a man named Mario (Antonio Mayans). Lilian tells Mario and his friend Bernardo (Jesus Franco) a tale about the sexual assault she suffered at the hands of her captors. Mario is forced to take matters into his own hands when the law refuses to punish Lilian's tormentors." 10K goes on to say, "Overall, Lilian is Jess Franco's hardcore masterpiece." In this film, by the way, Katja Bienert is finally of legal age. Trash Palace quotes a Melissa Kusia, who says: "This is a really sleazy film with tons of nudity and lots of hardcore action. S&M enthusiasts will enjoy some club sequences. (Mind you, any penetration involving Bienert used a double.) The film reminded me of Jess Franco's The Sexual Story of O (1984 / clip). It wasn't as intriguing, but the sex is a lot raunchier."

Una rajita para dos
(1984, dir. Jess Franco & Romay)
Aka A Crack for Two. Imdb says this flick is about "Secret agents against spies who hide microfilm up their behinds," and that is about the most detailed description of the film that we could find on the web. Romay, credited as Lulu Laverne, co-directed; she also supplied the screenplay and played the part of "Agent 69." We searched long and hard for some interesting images relating to the film, but aside from the low-grade reproductions of what seems to be the VHS cover (one of which is seen above), about the only other images to be found are out-of-focus photos of hairy sex organs and an odd photo or two that lays evidence to Lina's aging. (Pornographic clips of Lina blowing ugly guys and so forth, on the other hand, are easy to find if you take off the "safe" setting of your search engine.)
Over at video nasty – where the color version of the VHS cover was found – an unknown commenter says: "This is about the worst I have seen from Franco so far. I love it." At imdb, Lars Jacobson of Sweden says "If you're in the last stages of the disease called Francophilia, this film is for you. [...] The first minutes of extreme closeups of anuses through a magnifying glass really sets the tone for this disgusting hardcore effort [...]. Roughly 80% of the movie consists of failed, slightly awkward hardcore scenes between the three female agents and two male spies (one of them having serious problems holding an erection). There's also some slapstick humor of the lowest kind to spice up the dull hardcore action, like Antonio Mayans silly gay agent or the communist spy who chants political slogans while 'making love'... real classy stuff, recommended to idiots [and] lovers of unerotic porno [...]."

La sombra del judoka contra el doctor Wong
(1985, dir. Jess Franco)
Love the poster! Bruce Lee with Line Romay in a Jess Franco film! – You wish. Bruce had already been dead for 12 years by the time this film was made in 1985, and the Lee-inspired credit "Bruce Lyn" isn't even an Asian, but rather the Franco regular José Llamas. The movie uses film material from a real Asian sock-em chop-em flick, but we couldn't locate the name of the intercut film. Supposedly, the film is aka Judoka Shadow versus Doctor Wong, but we have our doubts that there was ever an English-language release. Indeed, there is only one English-language synopsis of the film to be found on-line, and it is little more than a computer-generated translation of the first paragraph of the long Spanish language review of the film found here. But to more or less reiterate that text: "Dr. Wong (Jess Franco) sends his gangsters to eliminate Mr. Jung. The 'shadow of the judoka' of Bruce Lyn (Jose Llamas) appears projected on the wall and swears for revenge. In the meantime, Lina Romay and Albino Graziani, two British secret service agents, investigate Jung's murder. Wong wants to get rid of Macedo, a Philippine gangster in bad business, and dominate the market." Sounds thrilling.

La esclava blanca
(1985, dir. Jess Franco)
The VHS cover of this film reuses artwork also used for a VHS release of 1973's The Lustful Amazons, but though there are a few mild similarities in the plot – Amazon setting, untold riches, uncivilized tribes, whatever – they are two different films. This "Clifford Brown" film is supposedly aka The White Slave, a literal translation of the Spanish title, but we couldn't locate any proof of an English version.
The Franco specialist Robert Monell says "Of the eight films Franco made in 1985 (half of them hardcore porno features), this very low budget adventure stands out because of an absorbing, multi-layered script [... of] three separate stories that gradually interweave and come together in the final scene." The tale involves traitorous jungle guides, an uncivilized tribe called the Tobongas out to sacrifice a young bride (Conchita Montes) to their lizard god, and a karate instructor (Romay) who comes to Tobonga Land to find out what happened to her friend, the bride. The climax, according to Monell, is "expertly shot and edited despite the budgetary restrictions, may remind some viewers of a miniature version of the final scene in The Wild Bunch (1969 / trailer). The very last scene, in which the Tobonga gold is thrown away, echoes The Treasure of Sierra Madre (1948 / trailer). Franco's film, of course, is a lot less ambitious than those two classics, but maybe that's why it works so well. The massacre at the Tobonga camp, the abduction scene, and the opening safari are as well-staged as anything Franco has ever done. There's also an amusing dose of voodoo dancing thrown in for good measure. [...] With its karate scenes, voodoo rituals, adventure story, literary and film references, La esclava blanca seems like a kind of compendium of Franco's 1980s output (minus the hardcore sex material). And if one can get past his other sub-standard jungle/cannibal fare, this one is most definitely worth seeking out." The script, by the way, is from the Spanish screenwriter Santiago Moncada, who penned many a groovy film, including Voodoo Black Exorcist (1974 / full film), The Swamp of the Ravens (1974 / opening), Bell from Hell (1973 / trailer),  Cauldron of Death (1973 / trailer), All the Colors of the Dark (1972 / Spanish trailer), and Hatchet for the Honeymoon (1970 / trailer / full film in Italian).
The book cover to some French pulp novel to the left with the American Indians on it has nothing to do with this Franco film, other than sharing its title, but we include it here cause it's such a nice cover. (Savages are everywhere, and all they want are the virtue our white women.) The screenshots above at the left, on the other hand, are from the film.

El hombre que mató a Mengele
(1985, dir. Jess Franco)
Who knows whether or not this film ever truly got made; the only source we could find for it was imdb, which lists it on the career film lists of all those involved – without any further details such as plot or anything.  (On the other hand, Wikipedia does not list it anywhere.) But what is odd is that a year later, that other great sleaze director Andrea Bianchi (Massacre [1989 / 7 minutes], Burial Ground: The Nights of Terror [1981 / trailer], Malabimba [1979 / trailer], Strip Nude for Your Killer [1975 / trailer] and What the Peeper Saw [1972 / trailer]), working as "A. Frank Drew White", brought out the similarly themed film Commando Mengele (aka L'Ange de la Mort and Angel of Death), scripted by Jess Franco, and featuring many of the same cast (but, according to imdb, not Lina Romay). The images here are all from Bianchi's film, which, like Franco's undocumentable movie, features Howard Vernon as Mengele.
Assuming that imdb is even right in listing El hombre que mató a Mengele, although we have no proof to our assumption, we find it entirely plausible that Franco may have started the film and for whatever reason was unable to finish it, and in good ol' Italo-exploitation style, Bianchi took what he needed from the original footage to make his film around a new set of "stars" (Christopher Mitchum and Fernando Rey). The website Cosmic Hex says the following about the film: "[This is a] Jess Franco penned Nazi oddity-de-force. Strong vampire overtones as a Van-Helsing-like Jewish commando team hunts out Josef Mengele – who has survived WWII and is now covertly continuing bizarre human experimentation including virgin impregnations that may....or may Hitler. Just one of the many heavy-handed setups that are strangely never followed through (Franco was reportedly 'let go' during production so there may be some legit excuses for continuity issues.) No matter, because we have neglected to mention that Mengele has an army of kung fu experts....that do battle with the Jewish commando team...WHO ARE KUNG FU EXPERTS! We know...amazing coincidence!!! Just keep in mind, as par for the course in this film, they may...or may not....actually battle with kung fu. Designer jeans and circuses – it just HAS to be visionary, right? Jess Franco and peanut butter and jelly!!"

Viaje a Bangkok, ataúd incluido
(1985, dir. Franco & "Rosa M. Almirall")
Bangkok, cita con la muerte
(1985, dir. Jess Franco)
Franco, in a typically cost-saving move, shot these two films simultaneously using some of the same cast. According to imdb, Romay, who had the part of "Queen Amania" in Bangkok, cita con la muerte (aka Bangkok: Appointment with Death and Bangkok, City of the Dead), was the second unit director (credited as "Rosa M. Almirall") for Viaje a Bangkok, ataúd incluido (Travel to Bangkok, Coffin Included). Viaje a Bangkok, ataúd incluido has had a DVD release and has actually been seen by some people, unlike Bangkok, cita con la muerte, which – at least in the English-speaking world – appears only to have been seen by that Franco specialist extraordinaire, Robert Monell, and he saw  "the unfortunate VSOM video dub taken from Spanish TV." We found two different texts by him on the web, one in which he seemed to like the film, the other in which he seemed to hate it; when one indiscriminately combines the two different texts, then he says: "A good-natured experiment, Bangkok City of the Dead mixes comic book-style imagery with a thriller plot. Franco has tried this before, notably in the delightful Los Blues Calle Pop (1983). Unlike that project, Bangkok falls flat on its face. [...] Bangkok is a fun, frenetically staged, crime/adventure/martial arts conglomerate shot in very bright Fujicolor [...]. A frenzied lark with a downbeat ending and another Franco obscurity. [...] Lina Romay is the pirate, Queen Aminia. She looks pretty sleek in black karate gear. [...] The yacht-going daughter (Helena Garret) of a millionaire is kidnapped by pirates. Her father (Eduardo Fajardo) hires a bumbling private eye named Panama Joe (Christian Gordon) to locate her. [...] Panama Joe discovers the crooks are led by a drug smuggler (Antonio Mayans), who is in turn being double-crossed by Queen Amania (Lina Romay). The detective tries to play both sides against the other, while uncovering deeper layers of corruption and double dealing. [...] Bangkok is dialogue and plot heavy [...]. [...] What's left is a C-minus adventure with some ill-timed comic relief and ineptly staged karate stand-offs, in which the participants miss each other by miles. Lina Romay [...] is once again miscast, and her overweight appearance distracts from her performance. In one embarrassing scene, she dances around in a tight swimsuit accompanied by a mechanical band. The result might have been cute in 1973, but at this late date it is unfunny, unerotic and unflattering to the talented Ms. Romay."
Viaje a Bangkok, ataúd incluido, on the other hand, seems to have been played straight. Supposedly the film is based on an Edgar Wallace novel, but in fact Franco only uses a few Wallace characters, namely Colonel Daniel J. Blimp (Howard Vernon) and Agent Philip Sanders (José Llamas), the rest is all Franco's own. The plot, to decipher a computer-generated translation of a Spanish text: "Colonel Daniel J. Blimp, of the British secret service, travels to Bangkok to investigate the death of the English Ambassador who was murdered during a party held at his residence. The murderer is in hospital, injured. Working with a secret service agent named Jonathan Keats (Christian Bork), he finds the murderer blind and with mutated black skin. Keats is killed, so Sanders, an envoy from London, joins the case and they find out that the ambassador's daughter Marion (Helena Garret) is part of a sect. The sect, which had her father killed, is headed by a Professor (Trino Trives) whose goal is to kill the Secretary-General of the United Nations and establish a new order."

Juego sucio en Casablanca
(1985, dir. Jess Franco)
Aka Dirty Game in Casablanca. Once again with "Rosa María Almirall" as the second-unit director, but aside from her directorial duties, Romay is also supposedly seen (un-credited) somewhere in the film; Santiago Moncada, the writer of La esclava blanca, supplied the script. Imdb claims the film to be a remake of Tulio Demicheli's Ace of Hearts (1975), which was also written by Moncada. (Fans of truly bad films should one day catch Tulio Demicheli's 1970 disasterpiece, the horror film Assignment Terror / Dracula vs. Frankenstein [trailer / full film].) The computer-generated translation of the Spanish-language plot description found at the blogspot Enciclopedia del Cine Español is as follows: "Dean (William Berger), a failed American writer married to a rich woman (Muriel Montossé), decides to kill himself when his wife announces that she is going to divorce. Unable to do it himself, he decides to give a large sum, won in poker, to that of fellow of the game that dares to assassinate him. Distributing the four aces in the deck, he who receive the ace of hearts will be chosen. Returning to his hotel, his wife comes to ask forgiveness and to reconcile. From this moment on, Dean fights to recover the ace of hearts and save his life." 10K Bullets says the film "falls somewhere in-between average and good Franco."

La mansión de los muertos vivientes
(1985, dir. Jess Franco)
Aka Mansion of the Living Dead. Lina Romay, credited as Candy Coster, plays the part of Candy. This film is basically an unofficial entry in the Blind Dead series – unofficial in that it looks and feels and plays out like a blind dead film would look and feel and play had Franco ever made an official entry.
10K Bullets says "Four strippers (Eva Leon, Mamie Kaplan, Lina Romay and Elisa Vela) get a great deal to on a vacation at a remote island resort. They soon find out why it was such a great deal when they learn the place is empty except for them, the gardener (Albino Graziani) and the hotel manager (Antonio Mayans). [...] The film's title Mansion of the Living Dead is kind of a misnomer since there are no mansions only monasteries and hotels in this film."
SexGoreMutants says: "Mansion of the Living Dead [...] is firmly entrenched in the director's unique visual sensibilities, and depends more on bare skin, color, and traditional supernatural trappings than storytelling conventions. A sexually charged stew of the supernatural and sexual obsession, this ridiculous yet inspired pseudo-Gothic follows the horrible adventures of four sex-craved female friends vacationing [...]. Before we know it, clothes are shed and sex acts performed. [...] It all isn't sunbathing and orgies, however, for soon the ladies are set upon by 17th century zombies. Situated in a nearby monastery, these ridiculous zombie-monks want a little grab-ass themselves, and proceed to molest, torture, and murder the girls in enthusiastic if not particularly believable fashion. [...] Featuring women tied to walls like slavering dogs, sexual shenanigans aplenty, and Monks in K-Mart rubber masks, Mansion is unfettered Franco. [...] While nothing here competes with the artistry or ambiance prevalent in the Blind Dead series, neither does it try to. Sex, psychosis, and cruelty are the order of the day, with the living dead simply added on as a sub-plot."

Para las nenas, leche calentita
(1986, dir. Candy Coster)
The title of this X-rated, never released in English flick translates into "Hot Milk for the Girls" – one must assume that Spanish girls swallow. As we all know, "Candy Coster" is Lina Romay, whose directorial efforts always feature a style so influenced by her mentor Franco that it is easy to imagine he actually shot the films. Over at Tomb It May Concern, whence the above image is taken, David A. Zuzelo says the film is a "rather goofy 1986 hardcore entry that delivers flaccid penis by the inch,  flab by the pound and a final cream pie close-up shot that just about says it all! SPLAT!" With Romay, as Lulú Laverne, playing "Chelo Cucufate."

Las últimas de Filipinas
(1986, dir. Jess Franco)
Romay is present as the governess Cecilia Muro and as the assistant director ("R.M. Almirall") in this film obviously "inspired" (at least in parts) by The Blue Lagoon (1980 / trailer).
Cinema of the World, one of the few sources on the web that seems to have actually seen the film, says: "Fleeing a U.S. attack during the war, two sisters and their governess are shipwrecked on a (not so) deserted island. Believe it or not Lina appears to have only one brief nude scene. Who'd a thunk it? [....] Another Franco jungle 'masterpiece'." The poster to the left has nothing to do with Franco's film, other than sharing the same name, but we liked the way it looked so we thought we would share it. The screenshots below, on the other hand, come directly from the film. Robinson Crusoe never had it that good, for sure.


La chica de los labios rojos
(1986, dir. Jess Franco)
Lina plays "Terry Morgan." Over at The Latarnia Forums, paroxismus, who says that film was never released theatrically, also quotes The Manacoa Files to say that the film is "a mixture of film noir and vaudeville, similar in tone to Midnight Party (1976) or ¿Cuánto cobra un espía? (1984)." Paroxismus also supplies his own opinion about the film: "It is a classical detective story with some comedy elements and some nudity. [...] The movie is very inferior from other Red Lips films, lacking the wit, the genre twists and the meta-cinema tricks* of El caso de las dos bellezas (1969 / dance scene) or Besame monstruo (1969 / 3-minute edit). The script is linear, narrated by Al Pereira (Antonio Mayans) and has lots of dialogue and silly jokes. Seems like it was shoot without sound and awfully dubbed afterwards. Jess Franco dubs one minor character and has a cameo."
*Not to mention both Janine Reynaud and Rosanna Yanni as the Red Lips.
Super cheap-looking video to a Cumbia that has nothing to do with the film but shares the title (included here only 'cause we like Cumbia):

Fury in the Tropics
(1986, dir. Jess Franco)
Aka, supposedly in a hardcore sex version, as Orgasmo perverso, but under whatever name or version it is, in the end, yet another hard to get Franco/Romay film that few people seem to have seen. In fact, the review on imdb written by babycarrot67 of Columbus, Ohio, seems to be the definitive description of Fury in the Tropics, for it is found all over the web with and without accreditation. Babycarrot67 says: "Lina Romay stars as the proverbial prostitute with a heart of gold who lives and works in a bamboo-built brothel [...]. She falls in love with one of her customers, and she and one of her sister call girls are sent to a women's prison, where they are promptly stripped and whipped in the prison yard in front of the other prisoners [...]! Shortly thereafter the women are stripped and hung by their wrists and then have their breasts and private areas poked by a sword. The women plot their escape, but cannot be saved from an incredibly brutal gang rape, even vicious by Franco's standards and even more protracted than the similar scene in Franco's WIP film Ilsa, the Wicked Warden (1977). [...] This film was shot in the early 1980s during a very low budget period in Franco's career, and as a result we really do not see one convincing prison set in this entire film [...]. The cheap, sadistic WIP thrills are here in abundance, and unlike Sadomania (1981) or even the four-way female sex scene in Women in Cell Block 9 (1978), there is absolutely no humor in Fury in the Tropics, just torture, rape, a fat dictator general, a vicious lesbian wardress, and heavy drama. The acting is also quite good. Fans of Franco's other WIP films should not miss [this one]!"

El ojete de Lulú 
 (1986, dir. Jess Franco & Romay)
El chupete de Lulú

 (1985, dir. Jess Franco)
Though these films are listed on imdb as two different movies both featuring by Romay (as "Lulú Laverne"), we are of the opinion that they are either the same film or different cuts of the same film – but having seen neither, we are not sure which. All we do know is that in the on-line descriptions of these "two" obscure X-rated Spanish films, mention is made of a scene in which Romay makes creative use of an Oscar statue.
On imdb, swnthom from Portland, Oregon, says that El chupete de Lulú "[...] could be summed up by Lina Romay's vagina, how many times Franco can show it, how many different angles he can show it from, and how far he can thrust a camera up Ms. Romay's privates. Granted, you can do this, but Franco does this will all the aplomb of a bad porno director. This movie is no different. It is hardcore with Romay doing the business with men and women. Unlike in other films, however, you not only get to see up Ms. Romay's crotch, in typical CLOSE UP FASHION but you also get to see various items, including an Oscar statuette, stuck up it." As for El ojete de Lulú, a film better known by its wonderful English-language name, Lulu's Talking Ass, Cinema Bizarre says "Here's the lowdown, if you are looking for good acting, and a great story, forget it.  However if you are looking for a sleaze-fest, featuring Lina Romay, naked in her prime, and doing what she does best then you my friend are in luck." Trash Palace adds a few more details: "Standard XXX porn film, with a bend towards oral sex, narrated by Lina Romay's butthole! [...] Nice looking picture!"

Anyone reading this blog ever see either film? At imdb, slake09 of Silver Lake, Ohio, was rather taken by the film, and says: "We're talking Lina Romay in her prime here, mid-thirties and squirmingly, explicitly, deliciously buck naked. Can she act? Of course she can, I'd give her an Oscar any day. Maybe a box full of them, if I got to watch her use them like she does here."
The DVD cover shown above reveals little about the film, but what we here at a wasted life do know, however, is that the curvaceous nekkid babe in focus on the DVD cover shown above has nothing to do with talking butts or Lina Romay: the babe's a popular internet model named Veronica Zemanova who, at the time this film was made, was all of eleven years old and didn't have any implants yet.
Veronica Zemanova, by the way, was the plot device of this film below which has nothing to do with Franco or Romay or talking buttholes.
Zemanovaload (2005) trailer:

El mirón y la exhibicionista
(1986, dir. Franco & Romay)
Dunno, here at a wasted life, we have to admit that nothing gets us limper quicker than a Franco/Romay porno film, this one included. (See for yourself: A NSFW 5:42 clip can be found here at Mr Skiff featuring the badly dubbed moans of Romay as she first has her hairy apple pie eaten and then gives what looks to be a painful blowjob to the uncut dinner guest, who is obviously not turned on by her or what was going on.) 
El mirón y la exhibicionista features a plump Romay (as Lulu Laverne) plays the title "Exhibicionista" in a bad wig and with a face powdered corpse-white. At imdb, Michael Elliott of Louisville, KY, is there to tell us the plot: "A woman (Romay) notices a man spying on her from a hotel room across from hers so she gives him something to look at."
Trash Film Addict says that the short running time [of 54 minutes] is advantageous, because the film is "a plotless porn that doesn't try to arouse and only has weird imagery to offer by way of redeeming qualities." TFA also tends to think the sex doesn't work, as they "had great trouble watching most of it. Performers come in various shapes and sizes and the intrusive camera often captures them in rather unattractive detail. [...] It's healthier to go out for a cigarette during some of the less flattering close-ups than to brave it and suffer nightmares."

 Entre pitos anda el juego
(1986, dir. "Lulu Laverne")
"Candy Coster" stars in an X-rated film directed by "Lulu Laverne." NSFW clips from can be found all over the web – like here at Mr Stiff – and they all once again prove not only that Romay had a miserable taste in wigs but the average Jane and Joe look buttfuck ugly when naked on film – in other words, this is yet another Franco/Romay film guaranteed to keep you limper than an overcooked noodle. Good ol' Michael Elliott from Louisville, KY, seems to be the only person to have seen this film, for his review at imdb is found in one form or another on every site featuring a clip of the movie – so we'll do our own edit here, too: "Lina Romay plays a bored housewife who goes out and gets sexual pleasure from anyone she comes into contact with. [...] Hardcore films from Franco [...] can be erotic, disgusting or done as comedy and this one here goes for the laughs. [...] The film's really nothing but one hardcore scene after another but they all go for comedy over any type of sexual pleasure. The first scene, running twenty minutes, has Romay with two penises in her mouth, and removing them to simply talk to the camera and to wink at it. This scene continues as another woman joins the group and she and Romay have a long and vivid conversation while doing their thing to the men. If you're simply wanting to see Romay in action then this film will offer you that chance as she starts with a threesome with two men, pleasures her husband orally, then moves to a threesome with two women before the film ends on a massive orgy with all the characters involved. The film runs only 65-minutes and flies by very quickly [...]."

Go here for Part III.

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