original title: Die Sage des Todes
aka: The Bloody Moon Murders, The Saw of Death
Director: Jess Franco
Starring: Olivia Pascal, Christopher Brugger, Nadja Gerganoff, Alexander Waechter, Jasmin Losensky
Don’t panic… it only happens once in a… Bloody Moon
Miguel is a young man who has had to live his life with a disfigured face, making him very distance to the female gender. After being rejected by a beautiful girl at a masquerade party, he snaps and starts to stab her with a pair of scissors.
Five years after this horrible event, Miguel is let out from a mental asylum and is put into the care of his sister Manuela, the only female he has ever been able to confide in. He travels out to the boarding school she works at, but not long after he arrives, young girls end up missing…
Bloody Moon is the legendary cult director Jess Franco’s take on the slasher genre, but as always with Franco he is not out to do something generic just to make a quick buck. The atmosphere of the film and the style it is shot in might not be the best of Franco, but it sure makes the film stand out from the rest of the early 80’s slasher films. The murders are set up nicely, delivering enough blood and guts to keep slasher fans happy.
There’s also plenty of nudity, but what fans of slasher films will miss is the intense tone and the lack of attempts at making the film have any scary parts. The character developement and acting is also lacking. The main character Miguel, sporting a horrible makeup for his disfigurement, is played very wooden and emotionless by Alexander Waechter. None of the other actors stand out either, although some of the females sure do look good in it.
While there is humour to spot in the film, it is mostly unintentional because of the horrible dialogue (which might also be blamed on the dubbing) and the behaviour of the characters. Some might be put off by the relationship between Miguel and his sister aswell, although those who’ve watched enough cult films from Europe might not be that surprised by what we’re shown in this one. Viewers also need to quickly get used to the theme song that are constantly being played during this film. Would it be that hard to get one or even two other songs for the soundtrack here?
Bloody Moon is not a standout slasher film or a standout from the catalogue of Jess Franco, but it still has something interesting going for itself. It’s not a film I could really recommend to anybody since it is kind of an acquired taste, but if you are into stranger euro cult films, then you might find enough interesting about this to enjoy yourself.