Latarnia presents CASTILIAN CRIMSON
The Spanish Horror Film





Director: Miguel Iglesias Bonns
Screenplay: Enrique Josa, Miguel Iglesias Bonns
Music: CAM Espana
Cast: Nadiuska, Ramiro Oliveros, Luis Induni, Gil Vidal, Fernando Ulloa
Running time: 91 minutes
Gevacolor ~ Panoramico



A little-known 1976 Profilmes production that was released ages ago as a video in the United States under the title RAPE (on the Mogul label), DESNUDA INQUIETUD's main draw in its day was probably Nadiuska, Spain's delayed "sex bomb" answer to Italy's Sophia Loren.

The Miguel Iglesias Bonns-directed film begins in a French cemetery where Roger, a psychiatrist, and Frank, a reporter, are attending the funeral of their friend, Jean. Jean recently returned to France in a pitiful, half-dead condition from Spain, not the result of some spoiled tapas he ate, but circumstances unknown.  His friends Roger and Frank, apparently not burdened by any pressing chores or work assignments, decide to head to Spain to track the reason for their friend's mysterious illness. (I love this ability on the part of characters in euro-cult films to pursue adventure and mysteries with independent leisure and free-flowing financial resources.) When they arrive at the reclusive town Jean had last resided in, they find out that he had developed a obsessive friendship with the mysterious Maria (Nadiuska).

The superstitious townspeople consider Maria a witch, while the town doctor, more favorably and realistically inclined to her, describes Maria as an "apprehensive introvert." Seeking respite from the malice and gossip of the townsfolk, Maria has left the company of men and women, and now lives in a lonely mountain-top cabin with her supposed father, Gabriel, played by familiar Spanish character actor Luis Induni.

Love blossoms again around Maria. This time it is Roger who is compelled by her obvious physical charms and luminous yet dangerous allure. Unfortunately, any amorous attentions Maria receives rebound from her with malevolent energy. In other words, bad things happen: windows shatter, pots fall from shelves, burning wood turns cool and ineffective. Get too familiar and you may wind up in severe pain, then gravely ill.  A problem for Roger, so he hypnotizes Maria to find a clue as to her unwanted supernatural powers. In her dreamy past-life wanderings it is revealed that she is possessed by the spirit of the princess of Montezuma. The film's most expensive presentation is devoted to Aztec battle scenes undoubtedly lifted from an old historical epic.

As for that "rape" titling of the American video, there's no rape in the film, but an attempted rape, so those who bought the video seduced by the undoubtedly lurid Mogul box and the tantalizing title may have been in for a sad cold-shower revelation. Nadiuska does reveal her body in a couple of scenes, including the attempted rape, but this film's exploitative elements are primarily held in check. The Spanish title translates into the slightly less exploitative "Naked Unrest." At this time, spurred by the relaxed sexual freedoms after the passing of Generalissimo Franco, fantastique films were attempting to sound more sexual than supernatural. (Witness the Spanish retitlement of the 1976 sci-fi horror film PLANETA CIEGO, aka PEOPLE WHO OWN THE DARK, to ULTIMO DESEO -- LAST DESIRE.)

Director Bonns is principally known for two Kilma "jungle woman" films, as well as a Naschy wolfman movie, NIGHT OF THE HOWLING BEAST. This low budget offering doesn't give him a chance to do much except film the basics of the perfunctory script, but the coldness and desolation of rugged mountains, so much a part of the Spanish horror landscape, are effectively evoked. Nadiuska is effectively evoked, too.

-- Reviewed by Mirek

A copy of RAPE is available from

Inquiries to eurosin@aol.com