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Jess Franco Recommendations

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  • Jess Franco Recommendations

    It can be difficult to figure out which Jess Franco movies are worth watching and which are not, because his filmography is so dauntingly large. This is why I am asking for recommendations from people who are well-versed in Franco's work. Here are the ones I have seen so far, with my favorites starred:

    The Awful Dr. Orloff
    The Diabolical Dr. Z
    Marquis De Sade's Justine
    Kiss Me Monster
    *Venus in Furs
    *Eugenie... The Story of Her Journey Into Perversion
    *Vampyros Lesbos
    *She Killed in Ecstasy
    Female Vampire
    *Sinner: Diary of a Nymphomaniac
    *A Virgin Among the Living Dead
    Lorna the Exorcist
    Jack the Ripper
    *Ilsa, the Wicked Warden
    *Bloody Moon
    Oasis of the Zombies
    Mansion of the Living Dead

    There are a lot that I already want to see, mostly the ones that have been available on DVD and a few of the rarer ones. I'm really looking for the hidden gems that I wouldn't know about unless somebody recommended them to me. Don't be afraid to get really obscure. If you think I should see something, list it! And feel free to explain why if you want to. Thanks!
    Ryan Clark
    Senior Member
    Last edited by Ryan Clark; 11-19-2012, 04:39 PM.

  • #2
    Ryan - on the basis of which ones you starred, I'd say we share very similar taste in Franco movies, so I feel pretty confident in making a couple of recommendations:

    1) Love Letters of a Portuguese Nun - This is my favorite JF movie that you haven't already seen. Great nunsploitation with some really nice location work. Just make sure you don't watch the heavily censored UK DVD -- the uncut Swiss DVD is the only way to go.

    2) Countess Perverse - If a naked Alice Arno strapping on a bow and arrow to hunt down Lina Romay doesn't make you want to see a movie then I don't know what would. The DVD from Mondo Macabro is maybe the best home video presentation of any of Franco's films.

    3) Eugenie de Sade - I don't like this Soledad Miranda film quite as much as VL or SKiE, but it's still pretty great.

    4) Sinfonia Erotica - Very musical and abstract gothic melodrama with Lina Romay and Susan Hemingway. Pretty much have to go gray market for this one, but it's worth it. Hopefully Mondo Macabro or Severin will put this out one of these days.


    • #3
      Thanks, Apronikoff! I plan on watching the first three very soon, and I am currently in the process of... erm, acquiring... Sinfonia Erotica. It sounds great!


      • #4
        Doriana Grey is awesome and wonderful.

        Barbed Wire Dolls is stupid and great.

        Dracula Prisoner Of Frankenstein is also stupid and great but alternates between 'so bad it's good' and genuinely awesome. Kind of conflicting, really.

        Night Of The Skull works for me when I'm in the right mood.
        Rock! Shock! Pop!


        • #5
          Thanks, Ian. I am going to check out all of those. I had heard that The Rites of Frankenstein is better than Dracula, Prisoner of Frankenstein. Is that true?

          I watched Countess Perverse last night and LOVED it. One of my new favorite Francos. I also watched Count Dracula and, while I appreciated that he tried to stick closely to the novel (at least in the first half), I found it somewhat dull. Nice atmosphere as usual, though.

          I think I'm going to watch Doriana Grey next.
          Ryan Clark
          Senior Member
          Last edited by Ryan Clark; 11-18-2012, 04:14 PM.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Ryan Clark View Post
            Thanks, Ian. I am going to check out all of those. I had heard that The Rites of Frankenstein is better than Dracula, Prisoner of Frankenstein. Is that true?
            It's probably better on a technical level, yeah. I don't know if it's as much goofy fun though.

            Countess Perverse really is pretty awesome...
            Rock! Shock! Pop!


            • #7
              I seem to remember FACELESS being ALMOST a normal movie both technically and plot wise......and probably the only Franco movie I can sit through without being bored/annoyed/baffled/angry or suicidal!!!


              • #8
                My first few Franco viewing experiments were with some rather shitty movies, so my first impression of his work wasn't that positive. Later on, once realizing how vast his filmography was, I decided to give some other of his works a chance, and I am VERY glad I did. Films like Venus In Furs, Vampyros Lesbos, and Eugenie: The Story of Her Journey Into Perversion quickly turned me into a pretty big fan.

                I'm really enjoying this thread, because I'm also learning some titles that I need to check out. I think Countess Perverse is going to be the next Franco flick I go for.


                • #9
                  Thanks, Ehren. I really dug Countess Perverse - I hope you like it, too!

                  Last night I watched Doriana Grey and Barbed Wire Dolls. I didn't particularly care for either of them, but at least Doriana Grey had some nice imagery and atmosphere. But then, I'm not a fan of Female Vampire either (which it felt very similar to), though I think I like that one slightly better. Barbed Wire Dolls had a few funny/WTF moments, but not enough to keep me from nodding off now and again. I've only seen one other Franco WIP flick, Ilsa the Wicked Warden, which is far superior to this and a lot more fun.
                  Ryan Clark
                  Senior Member
                  Last edited by Ryan Clark; 11-19-2012, 04:45 PM.


                  • #10
                    Here are a couple reviews I wrote of Jess Franco films I recently watched:

                    The Diabolical Dr. Z:
                    The Demons:

                    I also watched Tender and Perverse Emanuelle and rather liked it as well. I will be posting a review of that soon.