A group of hippies step from a thunderstorm into a nightmare. The villa where they seek refuge seems vacant, but they soon discover that it’s the site of satanic rituals. After witnessing a bloody sacrifice, the group flees in terror, only to find themselves accused of having committed the gory atrocities. This underground classic features special effects by Carlo Rambaldi, the man behind Alien and some of the biggest giallo splatter fests.
Freda was born in Alexandria Egypt of Italian parents. Educated in Milan, he became a sculptor, then a newspaper art critic, and then began a career in film in 1937 in the areas of screenwriting and production supervisor. He moved to film direction in 1942, beginning a career that lasted some forty years. Resisting the strong neo-realism trend in post-war Italy, Freda (with Vittorio Cottafavi) continued to make films in the historico-spectacular style, at which he developed a considerable mastery. He was a pioneer in Italy of horror-fantasy films, especially with I Vampiri and L’orrible segreto del dottor Hitchcock. From there he went to melodrama and spy films, and even made one western. Strong on visual style, Freda’s films had popular appeal, and were usually commercial successes. Several are French or other European co-productions. Freda used a number of aliases during his career, including (as director) Riccardo Freda Riccardo Freda and Riccardo Freda and (as screenwriter) Riccardo… read more