The Loreley's Grasp (Las Garras de Lorelei, 1972 or 1974)

US BCI Deimos DVD edition. A Super great DVD company from the Golden Age of the DVD some 10 years ago.
This fun sleaze horror classic was released in 2007 and the same year the company also released the trash-sleaze
jungle horror La Noche de los brujos about some white women bitten by an african leopard vampire woman
In 2017 US Shout! Factory released both these gems on a Blu-ray

Always entertaining Spanish filmmaker Amando de Ossorio, the genius who gave us Anita Ekberg in a vampire castle in Malenka,
or old, bloodthirsty and ultra-mean dead blind templars in the Blind Dead series, and charming vampire women in leopard bikinis in
La Noche de los brujos, here presents his glorious vision of the old German myth about the siren creature of the Rhine river - Lorelei.
In my eyes this is Ossorio's best film even though the monster/creature admittely looks a bit ridiculous when finally seen closer.
The film is actually quite atmospheric and has a mix of great gore, fantasy myth and gorgeous women. No, maybe even beyond gorgeous
as Silvia Tortosa plays the teacher Elke and red-haired genre favourite Helga Liné is the murderous creature, Lorelei, siren of the Rhine.

Yes, it's delightfully trashy also, but the elements of German folklore, myth and fantasy and the fine acting from Tortosa, Kendall and Liné
makes it work ... and the gore is well made too. Also, in my case, i'm a sucker for horror films based on myths about sirens and mermaids
and i really appreciated the Serbian film Mamula/Nymph, or the 2014 Spring, Curtis Harrington's 1961 Night Tide or Siren from 2016, and
the 2015 Polish Corki dancingu i haven't seen yet but i guess it's interesting at least. And let's not forget about the original tale by Homer
about the Ithaca king and hero Odysseus dealing with the sirens in the classic epic The Odyssey, or the poem by Heinrich Heine.

Above: Helga Liné and Tony Kendall

In a village at the Rhine, somewhere in Germany, people are attacked by some reptile looking green monster, maybe made in papier-
maché and/or rubber with ping pong balls as eyes, but still ... the monster is murderous and rips out the hearts of it's victims.
Ms. Else Ackerman (Silvia Tortosa) a techer at a boarding school for girls ... eeh, women really and scantily clad such, is worried and
wants protection and a local hunter, Sigur (Tony Kendall) is hired to protect the school. The heart-ripping gory murders continue
and a beautiful mysterious red-haired woman with porcelain skin shows up at their funerals. Could she have something to do with
the murder spree? Yes, she can as she's the mythical entity Lorelei, living at the bottom of the Rhine river who needs the hearts for
some reason, staying young maybe. She sits at a throne and has amassed a lot of jewels, gold and stuff.

The villagers starts to murmur about the Siren being the cause of the killings and Sigur start to investigate. Could the red-haired
woman who's fallen in love with him really be the fearsome Siren of the myth?

Elke: "There are many stories about this river. The Rhine gold, protected by the Nibelungs, and the fearsome presence of Loreley,
combing her hair with a golden comb. The sailors who followed her call would disappear forever" (Lorelei ate sailors).

Above: Pic from the 2017 US Shout! Factory Blu-ray edition

The Loreley's grasp were filmed entirely in Spain with stock footage from the Rhine included, and it works pretty good with added
atmosphere. OK, when Lorelei seduces Sigur and then disappears down into the river the river clearly is a Spanish swamp in some
barren marshland and not the Rhine river. Maybe the same Spanish swamp-lake used by Aured & Naschy in Horror Rises from the Tomb?
Regarding the German street signs these obviously were put up in some Spanish mountain village to resemble Germany-
Lorelei's servant Alberich is played by the grim-looking Luis Barboo, seen in 1970's horror and spaghetti westerns.

Final thought: A very enjoyable B-movie take on the Loreli and Nibelung myth combined with fine gore and gorgeous Spanish actresses.

The 2007 DVD was presented in anamorphic widescreen 1.85:1 with spanish or english mono audio and english subs. The Spanish dub
sounded the best i think. Extras: a textsheet (se pic above), a trailer, gallery and the Spanish opening scene


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