Sound of Horror


Notes: Spanish. A Zurbano Films Production. 85 minutes (= 6 hours with the painchill factor).
Starring James Philbrook
Arturo Fernandez
Soledad Miranda
Ingrid Pitt
Jose Bodalo
Francisco Piquer
Andre: Antonio Casas

Produced: Gregorio Sacristan
Directed: J.A. Nieves Conde
Story: Sam X. Abarbanel
Screenplay: Sam X. Abarbanel, Gregg Tallas,Jose Antonio Nieves Conde, Gregorio Sacristan
Special Effect: Manuel Baquero

Summary: Maria, her uncle Andre, and Strabos play with dynamite in a cave,hunting for Greek treasure. A fossilized egg is all they find,but we see another one hatch a dark blob which immediately disappears. Back home, Andre announces to a grim and superstitious servant,Calliope, “As far as I’m concerned, if the devil comes outof that cave, we’ll invite him to the house. We see cave footageof nothing.

Another explosion unearths a mummy, declaredNeanderthal, but Andre still wants gold. Guests arrive, promptingreflections on youth, “the war,” and the fact that thesethree men have both portions of a map which 15 men have died foralready. Back in the cave we now hear that the mummy dates backto the siege of Troy. Meanwhile, Maria is counting on a dowry. Pete loves his car, Diana. The treasure-hunters dig up bonesof the diggers killed in order to keep the location secret, butthey need dynamite to proceed, and leave Strabos studying themummy. “Nothing” creeps up on Strabos and slashes himto death, roaring and squawking. The others return, determinesomething drained Strabos’ blood, hear the creature’s noise, andrun away.

Calliope’s superstitiousness is dismissed asthe type of thinking rampant “before the atom bomb,”of another age. Back to the cave with dynamite, they decide tobury Strabos tomorrow. But they hear the noise again, see nothing,run home, and lock up the house. One guy has been bitten in theleg. “There’s something in that cave that’s not of thisearth. But further talk of the ancient Greek art treasures keepsthe quest alive, despite arbitrary comments such as, “somebody’sgoing to push a button, then we’ll all be living in caves.” Close-ups on the egg-rock on the mantle are supposed to be ominous.

When the egg hatches, Andre smashes it andit is cast into the fire. Calliope goes outside for water. “Maybesome music will help,” says a young woman, but, wouldn’tyou know, practically unavoidable on AM radio, it’s the Dies Irae. Calliope screws around until finally she is slashed by the invisiblething. The rest run into the house, which the creature circles. More glib A-bomb talk serves as a lullaby, but Andre can’t sleep. He wanders out to Calliope’s corpse, then fondles dynamite. He tries to blow up the cave but is slashed as the explosivesbring down the mountain. “It’s over; no sound from in there.”

But the kitchen is destroyed and tracks wereleft in the spilt flour. Pete’s car won’t start, so back to thehouse where Maria gets a glimmer of the creature in one of thebedrooms and is trapped until their decoy plan works. The wounded-legguy wants to sacrifice himself rather than suffer amputation,but first the plan is to spread flour in the field so they cansee by the tracks where the creature is. It works, sort of: theythrow hatchets which stick (in the air), but the creature keepscoming and subsequently wanders away, merely bleeding. The carworks this time, but blood appears on the windshield. The creaturewas riding on top of the car. All run from the car except theleg-guy, who lights a fuel can and blows up himself, the car,and the creature. Screams come from the fire and we ponder, “wasit all worth it?”

Commentary: No it wasn’t.