Monday, April 4, 2022

Census Bloodbath: Girl Offs Girl (Capsule Review)

Year: 1981
Director: Manuel Esteba
Cast: Ovidi Montllor, Mirta Miller, Diana Conca
Run Time: 1 hour 16 minutes

Plot: A lesbian couple bring along a third wheel on their vacation, but when their car breaks down they are forced to spend some nights at a large rural estate run by a weird mother and son. They have sex sometimes, are painted in the nude, and eventually get murdered.

Analysis: A note: Bloody Sex (AKA Sexo Sangriento) was only accessible to me in unsubtitled Spanish. While I have much greater facility with this particular language than some of the other recent foreign films I've covered, some of the nuance of the plot was still lost on me. Not that the plot is anything other than an excuse to string together softcore lesbian sex and erotically charged murder sequences. 

As we've gotten deep into the trenches of the 80's slasher, we've encountered a couple of these more pornographically-minded slashers before. Results vary (Killing of the Flesh is protracted and boring whereas Momentos de Prazer e Agonia is merely protracted), but the bottom line is that they have almost no chance of being satisfying slashers because they aren't going to bother spending money on good murder sequences when they know naked women are going to get people in the door anyway. They always have a shot at being good softcore porn, but unfortunately Bloody Sex fails to match the lurid promise of its title.

Frankly, there's not even that much sex. Not that I'm complaining per se but, like, commit to your thesis! The second a woman starting having a flashback to a sex scene she'd experienced earlier is when I began to worry about this movie not having enough meat on its bones. This is about 20 minutes in, mind you.

The horror setup here is a decent enough riff on the Psycho thing, with an excellent cavernous mansion providing as much atmosphere as you could ever ask for. However, there's absolutely no mystery involved. The kills take a hellishly long time to get started, and as soon as they do, the film hardly takes a breath before revealing exactly who is committing the murders. Plus, the only thing resembling tension is a handful of the cheapest fake scares from the horror movie playbook, so that's frustrating as hell.

The one truly kind thing I could say about the film is that it has a killer score. I'm well aware it's just library music that they pulled from other sources, but they chose well. The sinister synths swell and swoon on the soundtrack, making you almost feel like you're watching something atmospheric and moody, which is more work than any other department is putting into this thing.

Killer: Multiple members of the family, but mostly the Mom
Final Girl: One of the Lesbians
Best Kill: OK, I hesitate to say it is "good," but because it is interesting and not very common, the woman getting stabbed in the vagina is certainly something.
Sign of the Times: This was about the last year, down to the minute that anyone was interested in ripping off Psycho rather than Friday the 13th.
Scariest Moment: Bloody wounds have been painted onto one of the tasteful nudes.
Weirdest Moment: The film ends on a quote from Algernon Blackwood.
Champion Dialogue: N/A
Body Count: 6
    1. Lesbian #1 is killed offscreen.
    2. Random Older Man Who Might Be the Dad is stabbed.
    3. Lesbian #2 is stabbed in the vagina.
    4. Mom has a knife thrown into her chest.
    5. Son is decapitated.
    6. Scary Old Man is axed in the head.
TL;DR: Bloody Sex is a slow and plodding movie that is neither bloody nor sexy.
Rating: 3/10
Word Count: 615

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