Your Daily Dracula – Quintín Bulnes as ‘Conde Lorenzini’, Frankestein, El Vampiro y Compañía (1962)
An unathorised, fairly close remake of Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, this features Mexican comedians Jose ‘Ojon’ Jasso and Manuel ‘Loco’ Valdez as handymen Agapito and Paco, with Jasso a stout, stern Abbott and Valdez a tall, rubber-limbed Costello. Agapito and Paco deliver supposed wax dummies of the ‘Frankestein Monster’ and ‘el Vampiro’ (cadaverous Quintín Bulnes, who played a moustached, top-hatted ‘el vampiro’ in the same year’s Caperucita y Pulgarcito contra los monstruos) to a wax museum, where the minions of slinky mad scientist Dr Sofia (Nora Veryan) steal the figures – they are, of course, the real monsters and they’re soon up and about, with the vampire plotting to take over America and the scientist scheming to put a Loco brain into the Monster’s skull.
Just as the Wolf Man hectors Abbott and Costello, so a moustached creep who turns into el Hombre Lobo when the full moon shines pops up to nag the plot along. Since the Spanish language version has never been translated into English, it’s hard for monoglots to tell whether the patter has any of the hysterical doubletalk A&C were known for – but it seems unlikely since Jasso and Valdez seem to incline more to the face-pulling ‘¡ay caramba!’ style of yucks.
Though Bulmes makes a decent skeletal vampire in the standard Lugosi duds, the stocky Universal-look Monster and the shaggy-faced Wolf Man aren’t exactly make-up triumphs and we don’t think they were intended satirically either. Some Mexican horror films of the period, including director Benito Alazraki’s other credits (Curse of the Doll People, Spiritism), have sumptuous art direction and expressionist camerawork: this just looks cheap and drab, failing to make anything of the wax museum or the mad lab.
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