Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Happy birthday cult siren Yvonne Romain !

Today is just chockful of celebrity birthdays like Joseph Gordon - Levitt ( 36 ), Jerry O´Connell ( 42 ), Denise Richards ( 45 ), Lou Diamond Phillips ( 54 ) or Tom Jones ( 75 ) but I just had to take the chance to write about another cult siren from the Hammer movies, incredible Yvonne Romain .

Now I don´t believe in coincidences but what are the chances that two hot cult sirens have their birthdays in the same month and I have not only seen movies with both of them I have also already prepared most of the material for a post on them ? What else could I do but do a post Today ?

Like in my post about Hazel Court a few days ago I will concentrate on one specific movie with Yvonne Romain, The Curse of The Werewolf from 1961 because quite frankly it´s the only one I´ve seen. And like Hazel Court in The Curse of Frankenstein Yvonne totally made the movie for me. Not that the movie is bad - it has Oliver Reed in it for crying out loud - but as soon as Yvonne appears on screen the movie is elevated at least three levels. Up to that point I was watching the movie more for curiosity since it really goes into detail about the origin of the werewolf curse.

It was really late and I was getting really sleepy but since I had already started watching the movie I told myself I would wait with going to sleep until the origin story of the werewolf was told. The movie begins with a beggar who comes to the spanish town of Santa Vera and wonders why the city is deserted since it´s not Sunday. A city guard - or at least an official of some kind - shows him a proclamation but because the beggar can´t read he goes to a nearby tavern where he finds the townspeople. I don´t know if I have mentioned it in my post about Hazel Court but it seems people from small towns are the same in all horror movies. At least in all the Hammer movies I watched. They don´t like strangers and they don´t like to talk about what´s going on and prefer to ignore things hoping that it will make them go away. To think the whole werewolf curse thing could have been avoided if anybody had told the beggar not to go to the castle and ask the Marquis for food from the banquet since he´s a sick S.O.B.

Instead they tell him that the town is deserted because the Marquis is getting married and so Today is a holiday and if he wants some food he should ask the Marquis. So not knowing they meant that in a sarcastic way the beggar goes to the Marquis wedding celebration to ask for drink and food and the Marquis who is an ill tempered ass is about to deny him when his new wife takes pity on the beggar. In jest but mostly to amuse his party guests the Marquis " buys " the beggar for his wife as a pet. The beggar gets wine to drink and food to eat and than has to dance for the guests. While this is terribly funny for the party guests the poor beggar is oblivious to his part. For him the Marquis is just a generous soul who saves him from starvation and while this seems a little dimwitted on the beggars part there probably weren´t that many noblemen who would give anything to a beggar so I guess if you encountered someone like this you wouldn´t ask too many questions as long as you got some Pesetas and something to eat and drink out of the deal. So he also doesn´t mind too much when he is asked to crawl around on all four and bark like a dog.

The guy is practically having the time of his life. The only one who is not as amused is the Marquis´ wife and so the wedding party ends and the guests leave. Concerned with the poor beggar she tells the Marquis that he should be looked after and somehow the Marquis has drunk so much that he mistakes looked for locked and the beggar ends up in the castle´s dungeon. The Marquis quickly forgets about this and after a while the only people who know of the beggar are the dungeon keeper and his mute daughter. As the years go by the dungeon keeper dies and his daughter has to fend for the beggar. Which is where Yvonne Romain comes in. And what an entrance she makes bending over with her giant melons which her pink dress with its generous cleavage is unable to keep under control.

At which point I decided to give the movie a few more minutes because things had just begun to get interesting. So the mute daughter of the dungeon keeper has grown up into a sexbomb but she still brings the beggar his food every day who starts to look at her with different eyes.

Or at least that is what I think is being implied here. Anyway, because our friend the Marquis is not the nicest person in the world his wife and all of his friends have left him and so he stays in his room. In which Yvonne has to go one day, doing double duty as a cleaning woman on the side much to the delight of the horny Marquis who is eager to get his hands on Yvonne. 

The Marquis tries to charm Yvonne but since he is rather old and bad smelling since he spent the last weeks if not months in his room this doesn´t work as good as it used to. He then wants to know the servant girl´s name but because she can´t speak she can´t tell him and as the Marquis gets more aggressive she struggles and manages to escape.

You really have to buy this movie because the only way to really savor this scene is watching it in slow motion, preferably on a huge plasma screen.

Yvonne Romain really knows how to fill out a cleavage and at a few times it looks like her huge talents are almost spilling out of her tight top.

Now the Marquis isn´t very amused by being spurned by a hot woman and a servant no less even a hot sexbomb like Yvonne so he has his servants find her and throw her in the dungeon to cool off not knowing that she will be locked in with the beggar who is more animal than man at this point and who feels a different kind of hunger come over him when he sees the little girl that was always kind to him grown into a voluptuous bombshell.

Now I´m not sure if this scene works for me since I always thought that animals don´t bite the hand that feeds them and Yvonne is practically the only one who feeds him. I just don´t think the creature would assault the only person who was good to him. On the other side even a caged animal is still an animal and might turn on you when you least expect it as one part of a world famous duo of magicians had to learn the hard way. Or it could be that this scene is supposed to emphasize that there is nothing left of the beggar and he attacks anyone. Now that I think about it as a former pet holder I can tell you that somtimes animals DO bite the hand that feeds them and if you look at it from a logical standpoint he may not bite her hand although his treatment of Yvonne is not exactly with care.

To make matters worse the mute servant girl can´t even cry for help - not that her jailers would heed her pleas - and is soon overcome by the beast.

We don´t know how much time has passed when we see Yvonne next - the whole movie is not very specific when it comes to the small details - but she awakes after what looks like quite an ordeal although her dress is not as torn off as one might suspect after being used and abused like a living blow up sex doll by a man beast. I am not entirely sure if censorship issues didn´t prevent them from showing this in a more realistic way. 

As it is we get to see the before and the aftermath of the sexual assault and we are left to draw our own conclusions as the activities of the night ( we have no idea if this went on the whole night as we don´t know how much time has passed ) were so strenuous that the beggar has croaked.

Even though Yvonne´s dress is not as damaged as one might assume she brings her impressive chest to the forefront which is a - well, I tried to find out her cup size but the only information available is that it is a 38 of what surely must be more than a DD so it´s an E, EE or maybe even an F. 

And now that everything is over the servant girl ( I don´t think she ever gets a name ) manages to make enough noise to alert her jailers who come to free her still oblivious to the whole captive now dead guy thing.

Which means that the dungeons must be really bad smelling. Okay, you might argue that the body has probably not started to decay and is therefore not yet giving off the foulness of the dead but even leaving that to the side, the way the guy must have smelled not being able to bathe that often must have left quite a stench. Add to that how dirty he looks - Yvonne´s skin has darkened seriously where his filthy body touched her - and this doesn´t add to a paragon of good smells. So they let her go thinking she learned her lesson which she did : never let some perv get the drop on you. Which she immediately puts into practice by stabbing the Marquis for having to endure a nightmare worse then what you used to hear in the limericks from the Stuttgarter Hofbräu commercials.

But her trials and tribulations are not over. After fleeing from the castle she lives like a wild animal in the woods for a few months and her almost drowned body is found by the friendly Professor Don Alfredo Corledo who takes her home where his housekeeper Teresa ( in some of the reviews below she is mistaken as his wife ) nurses her back to health. They learn that she got pregnant from that fateful night and the servant girls dies after giving birth to her son ( who is later Oliver Reed ) on Christmas Eve which apparently is a bad omen if a child is born as a bastard. This movie is really different than most werewolf movies in that the main character is a born werewolf and is not turned into one by being bitten or wounded by another werewolf and can be saved by destroying the first werewolf.

The movie also takes his time to tell the origin story of the werewolf since it is so different than in most werewolf movies and Oliver Reed doesn´t appear at all in the first half of the movie. And he very seldom appears as the werewolf which makes the few scenes especially fulminant like the big showdown at the finale. And since this post is about Yvonne Romain and not about Oliver Reed I will leave the rest of the story for another post ( where I can use the rest of the animated GIFs I made ) but if you want to know how it ends there are enough links to reviews below - as always. Once again it´s time to wrap up my 630st post so I just want to say Happy Birthday to Yvonne Romain and thanks for the Mammaries ! 

I needed at lot of background information on this post but with such a cult classic like The Curse of The Werewolf there was an abundance of those around. If you want to know more about Oliver Reed´s part of the movie and how the whole thing turns out in the end there are short reviews at THE TELLTALE MIND , THREE MOVIE BUFFS and at MIKE´S TAKE ON THE MOVIES and you can find a longer review with many photos from the movie on MAGAZINES AND MONSTERS ! There are also a lot of pictures on THE OLD DARK HOUSE´s post on the movie and SETSULED´S JOURNAL

I also have to mention Holger Haase´s review at HAMMER AND BEYOND where you can also find a post on Yvonne Romain and Mark Hodgson´s review of the movie at BLACK HOLE which concentrates more on the werewolf aspects of the movie while Shady Grady at THE URBAN POLITICO focuses more on the sexual subtext in his short review. The post also contains reviews for The Salvation and The Raid 2. Jeff Kuykendall at MIDNIGHT ONLY also makes a few interesting observations on the movie.

And if you think about buying it on Blue - ray definitely check out Chris McEneany´s review on AVFORUMS if you want to know what to expect where picture and sound quality and extras are concerned. Another version of the movie poster can be found on Jeff Durkin´s post on THE LAST GREAT ROADSHOW which analyzes it in detail that also has nice pictures of Yvonne Romain and you can find more movie posters and promo material at THE POSTER ARCHIVE . Coming to the territory of other Hammer movies Rick29 over at the CLASSIC FILM AND TV CAFE compares the adaptions of Dr. Syn : A Smuggler Tale of The Romney Marsh by Disney ( The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh ) with the Hammer version ( Captain Clegg is again with Oliver Reed and Yvonne Romain ). 

To close things up BRIAN´S DRIVE IN THEATER has a short post on Yvonne Romain that still contains a full filmography and her tv appearances and there´s a short interview with Yvonne Romain on BITE ME MAGAZINE .

A werewolf movie series I remember from my youth is The Howling although I can´t say what I liked about the movies except that Sybil Danning got naked in the second one. Man, she was in this one and the Lou Ferrigno Herkules movies and in Andy Sidaris´ Malibu Express as Comtessa. One of these days I really have to do a cult sirens post on her.

Anyway, this is the only good one with Sybil I could find so this is not from The Howling but The Howling 2 which had the great title Your Sister is A Werewolf. In any case who cares when she looks like Sybil Danning ?

This is a follow up to the Addams Family video from my last post.

Since I already used the video of Gespenster Geschichten in a previous post here´s one of the most influential comic magazines from my youth.

This one is a re - post but I´m not sure if Lindsay Lohan´s Saturday Night Live sketch was available in a HD version the last time I posted this.

It´s her best work and now that the Harry Potter books are continuing I wanted to remind people of this. I never understood why Disney never made a Kim Possible movie with her since both of them peaked at the same time. Although Disney shrank her peaks in the Herbie movie.

I also wanted to include a movie with Yvonne Romain and don´t fret, despite the foreign title Circus of Horrors is in the english language.

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Mike Perry said...

Fun write up. Romain was an absolute stunner. Love the way Hammer featured those lovely ladies. Thanks for the link through to Mike's Take....... much appreciated.

SUBZERO said...

Always glad to help. I only wish I could have written about more of her movies but I already have CAPTAIN CLEGG and THE BRIGAND OF KHANDAHAR on my watch pile.