Be on the lookout!
For Coffin Joe, the sinister one from Brazil, filmmaker with a thousand terrors, is coming to America, soon. And he may be out to get you!!!
Last December I went to Brazil for one of the most unusual celebrations in the history of the movies. In Sao Paulo, on December 17th, Coffin Joe was the center of attention at a party in honor of his 50th career birthday, and the 30th birthday of the screen character Coffin Joe. At a huge auditorium filled with fans of Coffin Joe, film students dressed as devils and messengers of evil brought a coffin center stage; amidst much fanfare and applause the coffin opened and from it emerged the very picture of terror and evil - Coffin Joe himself.
For the next 3O minutes he gave an impassioned speech to his followers, speaking of his life as a rebel filmmaker, and telling of exciting events about to take place in his life. Perhaps the Cult Movies readers will find these of interest.
Recently Coffin Joe had to undergo serious corrective eye surgery. Ever the showman, and thinking of new projects for the screen, he arranged to have the operation filmed. Around this he is creating a new film of horror, entitled Eye Of The Gates Of Hell, projected to be his most shocking film thus far.
Two different Brazilian rock bands have asked Coffin Joe to direct MTV styled music videos for them, one of which will feature an appearance by Coffin Joe.
He also announced that he has located a 16mm copy of his audition reel from his early films. This is the only documentation of those films, and shows actors testing for their parts by eating live spiders, holding live electrical wires and so forth. Hopefully he will be bringing this test reel when he comes to the United States this year.
Also, a video production company has hired him to direct a new project for television, entitled Knights Of Armageddon.
Most exciting of all, for Coffin Joe and for terror fans in America, was the official announcement that Coffin Joe will be the official guest of honor at the Chiller Theatre Film Expo on May 21 and 22 of this year. Held at the Rothman Center at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Hackensack, New Jersey, this event promises to be the greatest convention event of the year. Coffin Joe states that he will be bringing his original coffin - his dwelling place in many a horror film - and is looking forward to meeting his new fans in America. Look for him at the Something Weird Video table, along with many other special guests, including the editorial staff of Cult Movies magazine. Though speaking primarily Portuguese, with a limited command of English, Coffin Joe will have his entourage and a staff of interpreters to bridge the language gap. He has also arranged to have available a few collectors items, such as personal photos from his films, videos which have not been sold in this country, etc.
The word from Kevin Clement of Chiller Theatre is that "The phone is ringing off the hook" with questions about Coffin Joe, and it seems as though interest is running very high in anticipation of the man's first American tour. There is also the distinct possibility that Coffin Joe will be appearing in a new film to be produced here during his stay, and that there will be some film festivals staged showing 35mm prints of his greatest films.
For more information about the upcoming Chiller Theatre Convention and the American tour of Coffin Joe, call (201) 804-8040.
Also of interest are these new video releases, five of Coffin Joe's greatest, now available in subtitled VHS copies exclusively from Something Weird Video.
This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse (Esta Noite Excarnarei no Teu Cadaver, 1966).
This is an incredible sequel to At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul. Coffin Joe continues the quest for the perfect woman that will give him the perfect child. After being acquitted of the crimes committed in the first movie, Coffin Joe returns to his country town.
He kidnaps six women and subjects them to all kinds of physical and psychological torture, in order to test their courage. In one of the most impressive scenes ever filmed by Coffin Joe, an army of tarantulas (real spiders of course!) attacks the girls during the night.
Producer Augusto de Cervantes invested some money in this movie, and Coffin Joe (Jose Mojica Marins in real life) was able to hire more extras and build some sets including a very creepy chamber of horrors.
As usual, the whole city turns itself against Coffin Joe: a powerful colonel sends his thugs to kill him, but the grave digger takes care of them in a gruesome way.
In the end, Coffin Joe is dragged to hell by the incarnated spirits of the women he killed. The unbelievable hell sequence, with corpses hanging from the wall and devils torturing slaves, is shot in color.
Coffin Joe's Visions Of Terror
A compilation of 14 trailers of some of Mojica's better movies, including classics such as At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul, Awakening Of The Beast, Hallucinations Of A Deranged Mind and The Strange World Of Coffin Joe, plus a 20-minute installment, Macabre Nightmare, from the movie Trilogy Of Terror.
The tape is very interesting as an introduction to Mojica's work. The trailers are rare and were transferred from Mojica's own personal collection. Some of them are really funny, like the one from Hallucinations Of A Deranged Mind, where a narrator reads: "For the first time in the history of movies, the Para-Visual process is used. This process allows the movie to penetrate deep into the public's mind."
Macabre Nightmare is a great and scary movie about a man haunted by nightmares caused by his fear of being buried alive. The hallucination sequences are among Mojica's best work to date. Highly recommended.
The End Of Man (Finis Hominis, 1971)
This is not a horror movie. Mojica is especially proud of this one, a tale about a Billy Graham-style preacher who performs miracles and soon becomes a Messiah, attracting thousands of followers.
He saves the life of a child and resurrects a businessman who had died of a heartattack, after his greedy relatives killed him by lying that his unfaithful wife had passed away. In one of the funniest scenes, Finis Hominis penetrates a hippie orgy.
Mojica says that this movie is a 'warning' for millions of people who are fooled by preachers and televangelists and that the message is that no one can solve your problems but you. An interesting movie about the exploration of faith.
The Strange Hostel Of Naked Pleasures (A Estranha Hospedaria dos Prazeres, 1975)
Mojica produced this film, directed by his disciple Marcello Motta. Mojica plays the owner of a strange hostel where businessmen, gamblers, lovers and hippies look for shelter during a stormy night. During the night, the sinners meet their destiny and are punished with horrible deaths. The film has some bizarre, surrealistic and psychedelic ambience seen in Hallucinations Of A Deranged Mind. Some scenes are visually impressive, like the one where the imageof a beating heart is superimposed with the image of a clock. The plot is predictable, but the beauty of some scenes make the film worth a look.
Perversion (Perversao, 1978)
The original title was Estupro (Rape), but it had to be changed due to censorship problems. Mojica plays a millionaire who amuses himself with strange sexual habits. In a gruesome scene, he bites a girl's nipple off, only to show it as a trophy to his friends.
One day he meets a beautiful girl and falls instantly in love. She rejects him at first, but it is only a plan in order to get revenge for the harm that the millionaire caused to women. In order to finance the movie, Mojica convinced a wealthy Brazilian woman, accused of killing her husband in real life, to give him the money. He assured her that the movie would be "a wake-up call to all men who treat women unkindly."