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"The Werewolf and The Yeti" (aka "La Maldicion de la Bestia") (1975)

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The Werewolf and The Yeti (aka La Maldicion de la Bestia) (1975)

w/ Paul Naschy, Mercedes Molina (as Grace Mills), Silvia Solar, Gil Vidal and Luis Induni. Directed by Miguel Iglesias (as M.I. Bonns). And written by Jacinto Molina.

As with the previous collection, this one also ends with El Hombre Lobo. In this case we get the eighth (or maybe the seventh (it's a bit confusing)) movie with Paul Naschy as a werewolf named Waldemar Daninsky. Not that that matters because most of those movies have absolutely nothing in common with each other other than Paul Naschy as a werewolf named Waldemar Daninsky.

And, since there is little that is new under the cinematic sun, this movie is definitely influenced by The Werewolf of London (1935), The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932) (plus the five Fu Manchu movies from the late 1960s starring Christopher Lee) and (what else!) The Abominable Snowman (1957). A British expedition to Asia. In this case in a search for the Yeti instead of the mariphasa lupine lumina (although a flower does come into play here as a cure for the werewolf (A cure? Yep, we are also in House of Dracula (1945) territory with this one.) or the tomb of Genghis Khan. And Daninsky just happens to be an anthropologist and psychologist (why?) who knows the Tibetans and can speak Nepalese so is an ideal recruit for this expedition. And who does that expedition have to deal with? Sekkar Khan (Induni) as a poor man's Fu Manchu (whose main henchmen is named Temujin). And Wandessa (Solar) as a poor woman's Fah Lo See. Who, of course, dabbles in a little torture of the flaying variety.

Oddly, Daninsky does not become a werewolf due to the bite of another werewolf. Instead, he gets lost and finds shelter in a cave with two women who may be demons or may be vampires but are definitely cannibals. And Daninsky gets bitten by one of them while he is in the process of dispatching them. Although, since Daninsky is portrayed by Paul Naschy, they have a threesome first. But, if they were werewolves, there is no doubt that they were the least hairy werewolves of all time.

And, also oddly, there are no innocent victims of Daninsky in this one. I'm not saying that all of his victims warranted capital punishment (and, in this case, cruel and unusual capital punishment), but it appears as if the filmmakers were going for as heroic a werewolf as possible.

Oh, and speaking of influences, one of the members of the expedition is named Larry Talbot (Vidal)! 🤦‍♂️

As for the Yeti itself? Yes, one does appear. Once at the beginning of the movie. And once again near the end for an anticlimactic faceoff with the Werewolf. But, basically, just a MacGuffin. Probably why the title uses the word "and" rather than "vs.". The former is more honest.

And, technically, due to the cure, this movie has a happy ending. The music swells and the credits roll as the lovers walk away heroically. Until the viewer remembers that they are lost in the Himalayas and that they are poorly dressed and that they have no provisions and no guides. So, I'm fairly confident that they froze to death! 😉

All in all, it is not a bad movie. But it does feel as if some subplots were randomly removed. How else to explain why the villainess is done in by a princess who first appears 68 minutes into the flick. And last appears 8 minutes later. Where's her movie?!?

Random comments:

1.) This is the fifth of five movies in The Paul Naschy Collection II Blu-Ray set.

2.) And, of the eleven Naschy movies that I've watched (or rewatched) during this go around, I would rank this one 6th as follows:

a) Blue Eyes of the Broken Doll (1974)
b) The Hunchback of the Morgue (1973)
c) Horror Rises from the Tomb (1973)
d) A Dragonfly for Each Corpse (1975)
e) Night of the Werewolf (1981)
f) The Werewolf and the Yeti
g) Count Dracula's Great Love (1973)
h) Human Beasts (1980)
i) Exorcism (1975)
j) Vengeance of the Zombies (1973)
k) The Devil's Possessed (1974)

3.) Other English titles for this one includes Night of the Howling Beast and Hall of the Mountain King.

4.) And one of two movies that the second billed Mercedes Molina has in common with Paul Naschy; with the other being the previously seen Exorcism.

5.) And one of two movies that the third billed Silvia Solar has in common with Paul Naschy; with the other being the still unseen Crimson (1973).

6.) And one of seven movies that the fifth billed Luis Induni has in common with Paul Naschy; with the others being Ultimate Gunfighter (1967) (a spaghetti western with an uncredited Naschy), Dr. Jekyll vs. The Werewolf (1972), The Devil's Possessed, Kilma, Queen of the Jungle (1975) (a jungle adventure), Exorcism, and Secuestro (1976) (a crime drama).

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