Santos vs Las Lobas (Scott’s horror corner!)
Werewolves. Much like Frankenstein monsters (in my first review) they were on the wrong side of a vs. with El Santo! While he has a son, El Hijo Del Santo, unfortunately he has not had as many high profile run-ins with monsters.
Let’s not preface too much though, let me tell you how Santo got rid of the werewolves. It seems that the Queen of the Wolves is in trouble. She’s come to end of her life and frankly it’s looking a little bleak. So she convinces a leggy blonde girl to stab her and I guess forcibly reincarnate her into the woman. The lady seemed okay with it, so who am I to judge? Then what do we get? Further information on the wolves? Maybe some background on how the lineage works; something to orientate ourselves?
Wrestling! Santo and a guy who is of no consequence vs. a couple of other guys. I say the guy is of no consequence because Santo beats the shit out of both the guys by himself. When he finally tags out, the nameless tag partner proceeds to get beat up before Santo submits everyone. In the back, the aforementioned new Queen of the Wolves comes to visit Santo and hits on him, but he breaks out the flying cockblock and shuts her down. After she leaves he gets another visitor, this time it’s a representative from a small village.
Santos isn’t buying this werewolf jive and sends him off as well. Queen Wolf wasn’t happy with the results of our visit and we get our second match! Santo vs. a pack of dogs! Thankfully, they follow the rules of Professional Wrestling and only one dog comes in the ring at a time. Meanwhile, Queen Wolf convinces the rep that she was attacked by…something. So he does what any gentleman would do. Takes her to her hotel room, tells her she was imagining things and starts to seduce her. Meanwhile….
Santo tries to call that weirdo, but he’s busy getting killed by Queen Wolf. Santo shows up at the location the representative gave him and meets…a werewolf hunter. This man briefly explains that since Santo has been bitten by one of the dogs, he’s a victim of the curse of the werewolf and has to stop them before the ‘accession of the red moon’. We get a quick cut to a girl in the nearby pool calling out for help and before we can quick cut back, this nameless man is already running. Guess what?! It’s a werewolf! She tries to drown him, but Santo intervenes and she escapes. In a hotel room he further explains that his family is immune to the curse and now they’re trying to kill him ‘in original ways’ to make it look accidental. They then show him at a golf course and I’m not at all sure what they’re insinuating here…I think the werewolves were hitting golf balls at his head? Is that a natural cause of death? I’m surprised we didn’t get a montage of werewolves placing strategic banana peels on sidewalks. Why not just do Werewolf Home Alone?
Mere moments later our mysterious stranger is jumped in a barn by a she-wolf! His, apparently, minions seem to think he’s in trouble though are in no great hurry to help. They do know exactly which wolf did it though and track her down where she dies of…natural causes? She just sort of lays down. Apparently that was Queen Wolf, too. So they’re fucked. Unless…
Santo arrives at the airport and meets an old train station hand who points out an eerie package from Transylvania! We learn that that guy who died a few scenes ago was named Cesar Harker. A good name for a good man. Santo instead is put in contact with his identical twin brother who was nice enough to lay his dead brother out on the coffee room table.
Guess who’s dying!? It’s the train station hand. He actually gets the goriest death I’ve seen in a Santo movie thus far. The box from Transylvania is open and IT’S THE KING WEREWOLF! Is my lore wrong? Are all iconic monsters from there? I thought it was just vampires. Well, he’s here to take things over and pick a new Queen. How can a man choose just one of these lovely, hairy ladies? But no! It’s a random girl in a room somewhere!
Santo heads to the border town he was told about originally where they give him the traditional Mexican greeting of beating him with pitchforks and throwing rocks. His buddy Rob Halford from Judas Priest shows up and they’re friends now walking through a cornfield to escape the scorn of this little village. I know it sounds like I didn’t watch this movie carefully enough and that’s why I keep using phrases like ‘I guess that…’ and ‘Apparently…’ but in fact I’ve watched this movie three times now and I’m still not entirely sure what’s going on. For instance, men surround them in the corn field with guns! I’m assuming these aren’t werewolves…were they paid by werewolves? Where do werewolves get money? Are they villagers? If so, that escalated pretty quickly. Well, Gipsy (aka Rob Halford) and Santo split up in the corn field. How will they escape this?! Well, they don’t really have to because the worst sniper in history proceeds to shoot all of his friends. His one alive friend tells him to stop shooting and runs away. Meanwhile, Gipsy is laughing in a tree eating bamboo, apparently impervious to conventional weapons through years of waxing himself? Poor Cesar’s funeral is today, Santo wears his finest suit and mask, Gipsy his best vest with no shirt.
We’re introduced to the mysterious…actually mysterious implies a kind of calculated suspense; this is more like they didn’t feel like having any continuity so they threw him out there. Anyway, here’s Dr. Marcus…wonder who this guy who just showed up could be? He invites everyone to his mansion for a party. Probably best to forget about all this werewolf stuff and the impending doom that assumedly will accompany the red moon. This begins the climactic ending! The lights are turned out and werewolves descend upon Santo, Gipsy and the girl who was the supposed new Wolf Queen maybe…after about 2 minutes they realize “hey, maybe we should turn the lights back on so people can see the fight.” Anyway, Santos body slams some werewolves (for any faults this movie has, and there are plenty, I’ll watch them all for that) and they get away after incapacitating the Wolf King.
It turns out the reason Santo is so important is because of his silver mask. You see, because the bane of Werewolves is silver. He’s the silver symbol they were told about! Just in case, though, he hands out silver bullet-shooting rifles to a bunch of villagers as they prepare for the REAL final battle. Hey guys, remember about a paragraph ago, I mentioned how the poor lighting was ruining the fight scene but then they came to their senses? Well, sense is for people who do not make these movies. Yes, as you’ll recall it’s the night of the RED MOON. And the moon is SO FREAKING RED that everyone looks like a bland, detail-less blob.
I tried adjusting the picture using brightness and contrast, tried adjusting the colour to no avail. On third viewing, it actually is starting to slowly become apparent…I guess my eyes now suck as much as the editing. Santo chases down the Wolf King. Santo doesn’t take offense from anybody! He basically beats the crud out of the Wolfman, and throws him off a cliff. Fin.
Seriously, the poor guy hits the bottom of the valley and that’s it. I’d be disappointed but aside from maybe a killer rendition of “Breaking the Law” I can’t say I’d really care for anything else this movie might have offered in the way of an epilogue.
You may ask, what have we learned? That werewolves are cunning? That Santo doesn’t job to any movie monsters? That life itself is fleeting and we must fly at it with the fury of a 70’s luchador and ride that momentum until you finally crash?