The Witches' Mountain

Director: Raul Artigot

Reviewed by Paghat the Ratgirl

It's hard to pick out the plot of The Witches' Mountain (El Monte de las brujas, 1972) which starts with the slaying-by-arson of a little girl, then continues confusingly with the mother & her reporter boyfriend making a tra-la-la decision to visit a mountain rumored to be haunted by witches.

Although badly made & incoherent, there are unexpectedly arty bits when our male lead (Cihangir Gaffari) is taking photographs of an abandoned village & mountain scenery, & in each photo are people who had not been there when he snapped the pictures. How this ties into anything else is not entirely fathomable, but is mysterious enough in itself to be rather effective, even if little else about the film works.

There's a damned strange soundtrack which at one point even the characters in the film acknowledge hearing, a screaming witchy tune more grating than mood-setting.

Eventually the couple on the mountain are set-upon by the witch ghosts who dance about in what appears to be ceremonial preparation for a sacrificial marriage. Instead of a wedding, however, the female lead (Patty Shepard, well known among scream queens) wakes up in the morning in a cave with a troglodyte & runs away to fall off the edge of a cliff. Then her boyfriend is attacked & he sees his girlfriend is now among the ghost witches.

Perhaps no-budget exploitation director Raul Artigot intended to make a surrealist film but what he actually made is merely nonsense.

copyright by Paghat the Ratgirl

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