Drops of Blood Film Details
Overview: In 19th century Holland, a professor of fine arts and an unlicensed surgeon run a secret lab where the professor’s ill daughter receives blood-transfusions from kidnapped female victims who posthumously become macabre art.
Tagline: Why do warm-blooded beauties suddenly turn to stone?!
Review: An art student, Hans von Arnim(Pierre Brice)is on assignment working in the windmill studio of a prestigious sculptor, Professor Gregorius Wahl(Herbert Böhme)who teaches classes and is developing a carnival depicting important female historical figures whose fates were grim. Hans discovers that Wahl has a lovely daughter, Elfie(..the ravishing, voluptuous Scilla Gabel)who is kept hidden in his house and soon the two have a sexual affair with problems concerning her health and mental instability complicating matters. Wahl has a special physician working for him, Dr. Loren Bohlem(Wolfgang Preiss)who sees to his daughter’s illness. What Hans doesn’t know is that Wahl and Bohlem kidnap young women, using their blood to keep Elfie alive. Elfie, despite knowing their ghoulish methods, doesn’t mind because she is kept young and beautiful in the process. Even more diabolical is that Wahl uses the female corpses as sculptures for his exhibits! But, Bohlem’s in love with Elfie, Elfie’s in love with Hans, Hans is in love with a fellow art student Liselotte(Dany Carrel), and Gregorius will not have anyone complicating his keeping Elfie alive. Bohlem’s desire for Elfie will complicate his working relationship with Gregorius. But, a true thorn in their side is Hans who poses a threat to their neatly run operation when he discovers that Elfie is in fact “dead.” Developing a possible serum for Elfie, Bohlem discovers that a certain person’s blood type would in fact be needed so that they would never need supplies of blood again..the very one’s blood they need is Liselotte’s. They will try to keep Hans at bay by putting him through the rigors of a hallucinogenic drug which produces a nightmarish effect blurring reality and fantasy. But, the situation becomes heated between Gregorius and Bohlem over Elfie, and Hans will pursue the whereabouts of his missing love Liselotte. Superb Gothic chiller with the most perfect setting, rivaling even castles..I mean, seriously, a windmill which not houses a carnival of exhibits made with sculptures of human victims(..and operating the sculptures which escape from a door bursting forth to often startle the audience, are the gears within the windmill, quite an architectural achievement), but a basement which contains the lab where Bohlem conducts his blood treatments! It’s too good to be true, but it is. I’m not sure why others haven’t used a windmill more, because the director proves just how wonderful an atmospheric tool it is. I guess it’s partly inspired by “Frankenstein”, except the director creates inventive ways to use the windmill. But, it seems that(..judging by the climax)that the director doesn’t forget where his inspiration come from. The hallucinogenic nightmare sequence is quite a spellbinding experience..we are just as bewildered at what is transpiring as Hans is. Böhme and Preiss are appropriate villains, both desiring Elfie’s safety and beauty intact. Böhme has a great devious scene where he hovers over a kidnapped victim tied to a slab about to have her blood drained, promising her situation would be all over soon, carrying a look of mania on his face(..the camera looks upward as he stares directly at us, his eyes wide with madness). I’m not sure why “Mill of the Stone Women” isn’t more widely known..I only found out about it through word of mouth. I think this film belongs alongside the great masterworks made by Ferroni’s contemporaries in the 60’s, Bava, Fisher & Corman. The climax(..the windmill and Gregorius and Elfie’s fate)certainly ends in a blaze of glory. “Mill of the Stone Women” is an atmospheric marvel any horror fan with an opportunity to check out.
Country: Italy, France
Language: Italian, French
Duration: 96 min
Genre: Horror, Sci-Fi
Also known as: Le Moulin des supplices,El molino de las mujeres de piedra,Icon,El molino de la mujer de piedra,Мельница каменных женщин,Mlin okamenjenih zena,Dr. Skræk og de forstenede kvinder,Die Mühle der versteinerten Frauen,O mylos me tis petrines gynaikes,O Moinho das Mulheres de Pedra,Drops of Blood,Mill of the Stone Women,Le moulin des supplices,Moara femeilor de piatră,Doktor Skräck och de förstenade kvinnorna,Horror of the Stone Women,Il mulino delle donne di pietra,Le moulin aux femmes de pierre,生血を吸う女,The Horrible Mill Women