The Curator of Schlock #385: The Last House on the Beach

The Curator of Schlock #385 by Jeff Shuster

The Last House on the Beach

Not as much fun as Back to the Beach

I don’t like getting knocked unconscious and waking up in strange places. I don’t like waking up to find someone’s oily sock stuffed in my mouth. I don’t like waking to the sound of GWAR’s Sick of You blasting through the tinny car stereo. I don’t like feeling every bump from every pothole the driver can’t seem to miss. And I don’t like the bloodstained carpet of the trunk I’m hogtied in. — To be continued.

This week’s movie is 1978’s The Last House on the Beach from director Francos Prosperi. As you can tell from the title, this is another movie inspired by Wes Craven’s The Last House on the Left. This is another in the line of sadistic revenge movies so prevalent in the 1970s. The movie begins with a nasty bank robbery. Three young malcontents named Aldo (Ray Lovelock), Walter (Flavio Andreini), and Nino (Stefano Cedrati) make a getaway after shooting some civilians. Unfortunately, their car begins to break down and the cops are hot on their trail. What to do? Oh, look, There’s a house at the end of the beach.

The gang takes a peek inside and sees some girls practicing Shakespeare along with their instructor, Cristina (Florinda Bolkan). The gang takes the women hostage, threatening them with guns. Walter searches the house and finds the maid trying to escape. He beats her to death with an iron. Nino corners one of the young women, Lisa (Sherry Buchanan), in the bathroom, but she stabs him in the thigh. It’s a fairly severe wound, but not fatal. Aldo finds a nun’s outfit in one of the closets upstairs and figures out that Cristina is actually Sister Cristina.

The gang forces Sister Cristina to strip and don her nun’s outfit. Sister Cristina informs them that a bus will be picking them up in two days so that gives them enough time to fix the car, drink some wine, and torment their hostages. I won’t go into too many details, but this is an Italian exploitation movie so it’s going to be nasty. And then Sister Cristina receives a telegram from the postman informing them that the bus will be a day late. Sister Cristina tips the postman and I can only imagine she slipped him a note telling him to inform the police. Lisa finds his dead body stuffed in the lawn shed some time later.

Lisa can’t take it anymore and attempts to swim away to get help, but fails and is brought back by Aldo who leaves her fate in the hands of Walter and Nino. Sister Cristina is in the middle of treating Nino’s would when she finds Lisa’s dead body, murdered in a humiliating way. Sister Cristina removes the crucifix from around her neck before grabbing some poison to inject Nino with. After killing Nino, she takes his gun and plugs some lead into Walter. This leaves Aldo and his fate is the worst of all.

This movie may not be for everyone. By everyone, I mean anyone.

Photo by Leslie Salas.

Jeff Shuster (episode 47episode 102episode 124episode 131episode 284episode 441episode 442episode 443, episode 444episode 450, episode 477, episode 491, episode 492, episode 493, episode 495, and episode 496) is an MFA graduate from the University of Central Florida.

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