Wednesday, February 21, 2024

FRANCO FEBRUARY - DAY 21! VOODOO PASSION (1977) (Full Moon Blu-ray Review).


Label: Full Moon Features
Region Code: Region-Free 
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 86 Minutes 11 Seconds 
Audio: English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround, German 5.1 Dolby Digital with Optional English Subtitles. 
Video: 1080p HD Widescreen (1.85:1) 
Director: Jess Franco 
Cast: Jack Taylor, Muriel Motosse, Ada Tauler, Karine Gambier, Nanda Van Bergen

Voodoo Passion (1977), aka Call of the Blonde Goddess, aka  Porno Shock, is another film Jess Franco made for German producer Erwin C. Dietrich. The film is a remake of Franco's earlier picture  Nightmares Come at Night, it's set in haiti where Susan (Ada Tauler, The Fish with the Eyes of Gold) arrives in to live with her new British consul husband Jack (Jack Taylor, Count Dracula) in a gorgeous villa. Also there are his housekeeper Inês (Muriel Montossé, Cecilia), and his blonde sex-kitten Olga (Karine Gambier, Women in Cell Block 9), who is introduced as Jack's sister, but who lounges around the nude, and if they're actually brother and sister it's strongly hinted at that they have an incestuous relationship. 

Almost immediately Susan finds herself lost in a voodoo trance and knee-deep in a weird world of black magic; lead by housekeeper Inês, a secret voodoo priestess, into a secretive world of ritualistic couplings, murderous nightmares, and bloody voodoo rituals, with reality and the erotic dream world blending into one another like a kinky dream. 

This voyeuristic, sex-soaked thriller is wall-to-wall with hallucinatory nudity and sex; while the newlyweds are getting it on in a room full of mirrors, Olga is in the room next door masturbating with a champagne bottle. None of the women here ever seem to be fully clothed, and eventually we get the coveted sister-in-law carpet munching scenes, so yeah, it's definitely a Franco flick. 

It's also quite an attractive film, shot in Portugal there's interesting architecture and decor, exotic floral gardens, vivid colors and some gorgeous women to ogle, with lots of zoom-in and close-ups of eyeballs and vaginas, and a tasty jazzy bongo-driven soundtrack. The story is pretty thin but Franco weaves a decent enough erotic-voodoo mystery to move things along and keep my interest, and any holes in the plot are easily filled waxed over by the copious amount of sex and the delirium of hallucinatory atmosphere. 

Audio/Video: Voodoo Passion (1977) gets a region-free Blu-ray from Full Moon Features presented in 1080p HD framed in 1.85:1 widescreen, advertised as being 'fully uncut and digitally remastered from Dietrich's original negative'. The source shows some very minor blemish but is generally quite clean with mostly well resolved grain, accurate skin tones, pleasing colors and some modest depth and clarity. Color saturation is also generally leasing but there are source limitation of the original cinematography that leads to varying degrees of softness in spots, but nothing too troublesome.  

Audio, per what seems to be a Full Moon standard, comes by way of lossy English Dolby Digital 5.1 or German 2.0 Dolby Digital with optional English subtitles. The track is clean and well-balanced, it does the job fine, and the Walter Baumgartner (Barbed Wire Dolls) score comes through nicely but don't expect a lot of sonic nuance, but it does the job quite capably. 

Full Moon offer up some solid extras, we get an archival 40-min Franco Bloody Franco: Audio interview with Jess Franco (in French with English subtitles), a 6-min Vintage Jess Franco VHS Trailer Reel; the 4-min Original Voodoo Passion German Trailer; and a Rare Photo Slideshow with mostly German lobby cards. The single-disc release arrives in a standard keepcase with a single sided wrap, plus a Limited Edition Slipcover, both featuring unique artworks, both showcasing some topless nudity.  

Special Features: 
- Vintage Jess Franco VHS Trailers (6:45) 
- Original Voodoo Passion German Trailer (3:48) 
- Rare Photo Slideshow (1:52) 
- Franco Bloody Franco: Audio interview with Jess Franco (French with English Subtitles) (40:24) 

Screenshots from the Full Moon Features Blu-ray: 


Purchase it through our Amazon Affiliate link, Commissions earned: