MALATESTA’S CARNIVAL OF BLOOD

Christopher Speeth, USA, 1973, Arrow Films, Horror

“If Tobe Hooper were to have dropped acid and made THE FUNHOUSE eight years earlier, it might have been as insane, seedy and nightmarishly good as this.”
-- bizarre_eye, LETTERBOXD

On the surface, MALATESTA’S CARNIVAL OF BLOOD gives off the appearance of a throwaway bargain-bin horror curio -- but once you dig below the surface, an ecosystem of abstract influences, thrift store props in the style of PEE-WEE’S PLAYHOUSE, and avant-garde techniques come into view. An evil carnival impresario lures young people to work at his fun fair, so that he can feed them to the ravenous cannibals who live in a cave beneath the carnival. They also watch silent horror film classics projected on the wall while they feast. Set entirely in a rotting amusement park (which was bulldozed not long after the film was completed) and starring little person superstar Herve Villechaize from FANTASY ISLAND, MALATESTA is a hallucinogenic voyage that stands tall with MESSIAH OF EVIL as a masterpiece of 1970s outsider horror.

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Details

  • 74 mins
  • Color
  • 1.85:1

Formats

  • DCP

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