Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Endangered List (Case File #141)



LUCIFER’S WOMEN (1975)


Produced by
Lou Sorkin

Directed by
Paul Aratow

Original Screenplay by
Paul Aratow and Cecil Brown

Director of Photography
Robbie Greenberg

Music by
Ed Bogas

Editor
David Webb Peoples

Executive Producer
Edward H. Margolin

Associate Producer
Lisa Rich

Technical Consultant
Anton Szandor LaVey

Color by
Movielab

“One Hundred Years of Erotica”
by Paul Aratow
Courtesy of Straight Arrow

Production Services by
Phelps & Kopp

A Rafael Film Associates Production
Released by Constellation Films Inc.
Running time: 88 minutes
MPAA rating: R
Released in 1977

Originally planned as an X-rated film titled THE EROTICIST


CAST
Larry Hankin (Svengali/John Wainwright)
Jane Brunel-Cohen (Trilby)
Noorman Pierce (Sir Stephen Phillips)
Philip Toubus a.k.a. Paul Thomas (Roland)
Tweed Morris (Barbara)
Emily Smith a.k.a. Clair Dia (Mary)
Vic Kirk (Bob the Magician)
Robert Carr (Jeremy)
Michael Renner (Sgt. Leca)
Noel Welch (Buttefly Dancer)
Brian O’Brien (Morgue Attendant)
Susan Bonthron (The Duchess)
Diane Montgomery (Ceremony Attendant)
Ken Scudder (Ceremony Attendant)
Linda Harrist (Ceremony Attendant)
Susan Catherine (Hooker)
Kathy Spencer (Hooker)
Laurie Gross (Magician’s Assistant)
Kathleen Rochester (In the Rolls Royce)
Douglas Miller (In the Rolls Royce)
Cecil Brown (Boyfriend)




SYNOPSIS

Ex-university scholar and author Dr. John Wainwright has launched upon a dangerous new career involving sorcery, witchcraft and Satanism.

Taking advantage of the doctor’s newfound interests, Sir Stephen, his sadistic publisher, pressures Wainwright into finding a suitable human sacrifice for a devil-worshipping ritual.

They come across the perfect victim in the form of a free-living stripteaser. Wainwright’s evil mission is to gain the young girl’s confidence and lure her into a pact with the devil offering herself for sacrifice at the midnight hour.

But, unbeknownst to Sir Stephen, Wainwright falls in love with the girl and together they battle the missionaries of Satan in a bloody climax.


“Exorcism and Sex”
Latest Film Trend

The great success of THE EXORCIST, THE OMEN, BEYOND THE DOOR and other films dealing with satanic possession have sparked a great movie trend and interest in things demonic. Movie producers have tried an endless variety of variations on this theme which audiences are now responding to in a big way.

LUCIFER’S WOMEN takes this trend one step further and tells the story of three young women who claim to have made love to the Devil himself. The frightening and erotic story of their sexual possession by spirits of the netherworld in weird satanic rites makes for a shocker with tremendous lure for today’s audiences.



DOCTOR DRACULA (1980)

Produced by
Lou Sorkin

Directed by
Al Adamson and Paul Aratow

Executive Producer
Edward H. Margolin


CAST
John Carradine (Radcliff)
Donald Barry (Elliot)
Larry Hankin (Wainwright)
Geoffrey Land (Gregorio)
Susan McIver (Stephanie)
Regina Carrol (Valerie)
Jane Brunel-Cohen (Trilby)
Norman Pierce (Sir Steven)
Philip Toubus a.k.a. Paul Thomas (Roland)
Tweed Morris (Barbara)
Emily Smith a.k.a. Clair Dia (Mary)
Vic Kirk (Bobo)
Robert Carr (Jeremy)
Michael Renner (Jean)
Noel Welch (Dancer)


SYNOPSIS

DR. DRACULA is a fascinating story which touches on sorcery, witchcraft and a vampire. The characters involved in this movie are Dr. John Wainwright, an ex-university scholar and author played by Larry Hankin, his sadistic publisher Sir Stephen played by Norman Pierce, a strange friend of their played by that fine old actor John Carradine, and Dracula played by Geoffrey Land. We also have Don Barry playing the part of Elliot, his beautiful daughter Stephanie played by Susan McIver and a lovely young actress Jane Brunel-Cohen who plays the part of Trilby.

John Wainwright has written a book on reincarnation involving the magician Svengali. We learn later that Svengali possesses the body and mind of Dr. Wainwright and in order to continue living he needs a young beautiful girl for a human sacrifice. In fact, this sacrifice would also give eternal life to Radcliff, and Sir Stephen. Trilby is chosen by Radcliff as the perfect choice for this sacrifice but Wainwright has fallen in love with her and tries to fight his other self, Svengali. However Radcliff and Sir Stephen convince him it’s the only way he can continue to live eternally.

The other murders involve Gregorio, who is really Dracula. At night we see him killing many young women in the usual manner that vampires pursue. However, Elliot persuades him to see his daughter Stephanie who is very depressed over her mother’s death. He wants Gregorio to treat her mental problems.

In Radcliff’s home we see a weird ritual taking place, where poor Trilby is set up for sacrifice. Secretly, Dracula has already killed the poor girl by draining her blood which not only ends her life, but also the lives of Wainwright, Radcliff and Sir Stephen. In a cab we next see Stephanie and Gregorio, and he tells her the truth about himself. He tells her he can give her eternal life by making her a vampire like himself. She chooses not to live like that and uses an explosive device to blow up the car, killing both of them.


TEMPLE OF SCHLOCK: Can you tell us about LUCIFER’S WOMEN? We were disappointed when that original cut didn’t turn up on the DOCTOR DRACULA disc from Image Entertainment.

SAMUEL M. SHERMAN: That was called SVENGALI and we had a man by the name of Max Stein who had come to see my partner Dan Kennis. Danny liked this Max Stein, who was kind of a zany guy, and he brought him in to do marketing because I was always doing everything. He tried to get people to take away my jobs because it was getting so I couldn’t function. I was doing the trailers, the ads, the selling, the production -- for one person to do all that? So we brought in Steve Jacobson to handle the editing, labs and post-production, and we rewarded him by giving him a film to direct (TEAM-MATES). Max Stein was from Warner Brothers. He had done the campaign for one of the Dracula pictures – I don’t remember which one, but the campaign was, “You can’t keep a good man down.” He also did the campaign for John Wayne’s picture THE GREEN BERETS – “Just when you thought heroism was out of date,” or something like that. He was a clever marketing guy, but he was only clever for the major studios, where his weird concepts could be put across with millions of dollars in advertising. My campaigns were short, sweet, point of purchase, where simple trailers, radio, TV and newspaper ads would sell the thing easily. His campaigns were not good. He liked this picture SVENGALI. I didn’t like it. He did this campaign, LUCIFER’S WOMEN, which died. We couldn’t give it away. Eventually, given an opportunity to do something for television, I decided to change the whole picture into DOCTOR DRACULA, which was another script idea of mine. I used half of that footage, half of our footage [shot by Al Adamson] to make DOCTOR DRACULA. Image didn’t want a commentary track, so I didn’t get to explain that one. Max Stein worked with me. We worked together on the campaign for THE BOOB TUBE, and that was a mega multi-million dollar hit and as a result Max Stein was well paid for out of that film, but we paid him a lot of money for doing other things that brought nothing in, y’know what I’m saying? It seems like my career is doing things that make no money and cost money, and doing a few things that make money that pay for all the losers. Maybe the majors work that way too. Maybe everything’s like that, I don’t know.

TOS: Will we ever see LUCIFER’S WOMEN on DVD?

SHERMAN: If somebody wants it. Who knows? It’s an idea.


Our friend Paul Talbot wrote the article "The Devil in Hollywood: The Films of Anton LaVey" for issue 19 of Screem magazine (2009). Among the films discussed is SVENGALI THE MAGICIAN/LUCIFER’S WOMEN/DOCTOR DRACULA, and the article includes quotes from Paul's interviews with Aratow and Sherman. Paul also sent us the newspaper ad above, which is from the only theatrical screening under the SVENGALI title.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

How old is that conversation w/ Mr. Sherman? I know that I want LUCIFER'S WOMEN on dvd! Also English friendly legit releases of BLONDE CONNECTION and WOMEN FOR SALE . . .

Anonymous said...

I would also like to see a release of "Svengali/Lucifer's Women" on dvd. Just a side-note, I read the excellent article on LaVey in "Screem" and in the article, Sherman mentioned that hardcore scenes were filmed for "Lucifer's Women" and that he might have a "roll of (them) somewhere." Hopefully, Mr. Sherman will help us all out and allow an uncut dvd of this title to finally be released.