College Girl Murders [Der Mönch mit der Peitsche]
by Gary Schultz
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College Girl Murders is the new re-release from Dark Sky Films as part of their swinging cinema collection. This French-German production was dubbed in English and originally released in 1967. The story goes as follows, A diabolical scientist creates a poisonous gas and a scheme to make millions until he is killed by a mysterious monk in a red robe, the gas formula disappearing along with the scientists life. Cut to a prestigious college and an innocent college girl. She opens her bible in church only to be sprayed by a noxious gas that spews forth and kills her instantly. The usual suspects are called to investigate and the prime suspects may not be who they seem.
Writer Edgar Wallace, creator of the original King Kong, wrote College Girl Murders. It’s directed by Alfred Vohrer, features a crazy looking monk in what looks like a red KKK uniform. He also kills his victims by using a whip to either lash them to death or break their necks. While to story telling is slow and cumbersome at times the cult fans will appreciate to off key violence and strange stereo typed characters. The soundtrack is awesome although repetitive. This horror mystery boasts a really groovy 60’s style soundtrack capable for the likes of a beach party but set against the backdrop of a horror mystery. It does become funny at times.
Here’s the Bottom Line:
College Girls are cool but not too smart. Does all swinging cinema have a know-it-all? The monk’s wardrobe really does look like a KKK uniform, which is well, just kind of wrong, especially because he whips people. The fact that this film was recorded in French but dubbed in English makes it even more entertaining to watch. As for Edgar Wallace’s actual participation in the film, I am still confused, but King Kong 1933 was pretty cool.
Gary Schultz is a filmmaker in Chicago.
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