Lady Frankenstein (1971) – By Danny Runion

 A dirty bearded guy is doing some grave robbing. His buddies, the one eyed guy and wonder wino, help get the coffin on the wagon. They take it to Baron Frankenstein’s secret lab. Frankenstein wants a body less than 6 hours dead.

In the lab, Frankenstein and his lame assistant Charles Marshal go to work. Can you guess than Frankenstein is determined to succeed at any cost? His daughter, Tania, will arrive in the morning. She also is a licensed surgeon and determined to aid her father with his experiments.

Lynch, the head of the grave robbers, is trying to negotiate a higher price for the body from Frankenstein. Lynch is planning on delivering the body.

Later, Charles and Frankenstein are waiting for their special delivery from Lynch. They unload the coffin and begin working on the body. Tania heads to the lab. She learns that her father has moved on to using humans for his experiments. She wants to help and is amazed by his progress so far. Frankenstein doesn’t want her to participate to give her “deniability.” Who knew the 19th Century had so many malpractice suits to hide important medical research? Tania leaves downhearted while Frankenstein is working on the body. The Doctor and his assistant wire the heart. Frankenstein starts to movie onto the brain. They need lightning to bring the creature to life when it begins storming.

Frankenstein and Charles are still in the lab. They are about to transplant the brain when Charles realizes it is damaged. Frankenstein will use it nonetheless. Charles warns him of the dangers but still proceeds. They transplant the brain. The creature is raised on the slab for the lightning to give the gift of life. As chemicals bubble in various containers, bats fly around in the lab. The lightning catches the face of the creature on fire. The body is lowered. The creature is disfigured. Frankenstein checks for signs of life to no avail. The creature is dead.

Frankenstein and Charles don’t see the creature start to move. Frankenstein is depressed over his failure. He finally sees the creature is alive and releases it from the straps on the slab. Charles is sent to bring Tania to see the creature. The creature is ordered and embraces Frankenstein. Well, the good Doctor gets a fatal bear hug.

Charles and Tania hear the creature. They rush into the lab and find the dying Baron Frankenstein. Charles is about to get the police when Tania stops him. She needs time to save her father’s reputation.

The creature is on the loose. It spots a couple going at it like immoral wombats. Why does this seem to be a more adult version of Boris Karloff child drowning scene? The creature grabs the naked chick and drops her in the river. Later, some fishermen find the drowned naked chick.

Tania is looking over her father’s notes. Charles won’t help her until he knows what she’s planning. Tania wants to create a second creature to kill the first one. She wants Lynch to get her a body. He volunteers to do it if she’ll bump his uglies. She still finds him repulsive.

When Charles learns about Lynch’s indecent proposal, he rages about how to kill him. Tania knows that Charles loves her. She wants to use Thomas the handyman’s body for the creature and Charles’s brain in the body. Tania wants his brain in that strong body. Charles is so desperately in love with her he agrees. This guy is the ultimate wimp. Well, what guy could honestly turn down Rosalba Neri? Charles won’t kill Thomas. Tania will help him with that small problem. Tania has Thomas carry some packages for her. He drops them on the floor. She helps him gather them up. Locking the door, she maneuvers him to the bed and lets her hair and her clothes down. Charles is watching all of this nearby. Tania’s chesticals make a quite welcome appearance on screen. While Thomas and Tania are rolling around on the bed, Charles suffocates Thomas with a pillow. Would that make Thomas a pillow biter? Apparently, Tania gets even hotter watching the guy she’s riding suffering from a bout of un-erotic asphyxiation.

Thomas’s sister, Julia, comes by a come of days later. Tania lies about Thomas. In the lab, Thomas is on the slab.

Tania is starting to have a few doubts about the plan. Charles reassures her to keep going. She sedates him before the operation. Later, Tania is operating and begins the procedure. Thomas’s body is revived. Charles’s brain is implanted. Charles awakens in his new body.

The villagers are carrying torches. They find the creature and open fire on it to no avail. The creature keeps rampaging.

Captain Harris pays another visit to Tania. He wants to talk with Charles who claims to be very sick and contagious. Harris reveals that Charles helped Frankenstein created the creature that has killed everyone else responsible for his creation. Harris is sure the creature will go after Charles. Captain Harris has the Frankenstein castle surrounded. The creature knocks Harris out and heads to the castle. Charles finds the creature. Tania is convinced that the creature can be controlled now. It won’t realize that Charles is alive. Charles wants to kill the creature. The fight begins. Dueling monsters ensue as they trash the lab.

Charles cuts off one of the creature’s hands. They keep struggling. Tania runs an iron spike through the creature. Charles cleaves on ax into the monster’s skull. Charles and Tania embrace. Tania seems to be awfully hot and bothered. Captain Harris takes Julia away. However, they see Tania and Charles porking in the flaming wreckage of the castle. Charles chokes her to death. Talk about your climaxes.

It was said that Helen of Troy launched a thousand ships or something like that. I’m not sure how many fans of B-movies have tried reading some of the source material. How many movies have been made because of Bram Stoker’s Dracula or Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein? It would be safe to say that those 2 novels have helped to mold a large portion of horror into what it is today. It could be said that Dracula and Frankenstein launched a thousand B-movies.

Lady Frankenstein has a greater Eurosleaze feel. It isn’t anywhere near the suburbs of Jess Franco or Lucio Fulci. The late 60s and early 70s saw how horror movies became more explicit. A virtual cold war emerged as filmmakers tried to push the envelope as far as possible. The same era also saw nudity start to creep in the movies as drive-ins and the grindhouse theaters began to proliferate. The nudity is always connected to sex: Tania’s seduction of Thomas and the final porking, the saucy wenches that are with Lynch, and the tart the Creature dunks in the nearby stream. It still has that kind of aura about halfway in when they start peppering it with the female flesh. The Roman Emperor, Nero, may have played the fiddle as Rome burned. Can you think of movie that ends with a mad scientist porking their creation as the castle they’re in burns?

Rosalba "Sara Bey" Neri doesn’t try doing the stereotypical mad scientist like Maria Frankenstein in Jesse James Meets Frankenstein’s Daughter with rolling her "R’s" to the point of tripping over them. Tania Frankenstein is more interested in aiding her father with his work. After his death, she wants to justify his work to the world. She manages to seduce Charles to aid her in her scheme to create a second creature to destroy the first one. Rosalba is definitely a woman you can believe that the characters are drawn to. Charles, the assistant of her father, couldn’t help from casting eyes on her. She seduces the guy to give her husband a strong body to rock her like a hurricane in the vernacular of the Scorpions. We have the extremely greasy Lynch hitting on her. Granted, he didn’t have many problems finding any woman to use as mattress warmers. But, it just takes about an hour into the movie for Rosalba to truly kick into full on nympho mode. And that my ten of fans is a good thing…

I’m sure with a few more scientists like Tania Frankenstein experimenting. Some sort of technocracy would be established in short order. But, would anyone really be opposed to a group of hot Italian chicks ruling the world? I envision Monica Belluci in the remake of Lady Frankenstein. I can’t think of any better conclusion than to have dancing Monica Bellucis in one’s head.

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