Santo in Killers from Other Worlds (1971)

Rating:

Santo In “Killers From Other Worlds” (Santo En “Asesinos De Otros Mundos”)

Mexico. 1971.

Crew

Director – Ruben Galindo, Screenplay – Ruben Galindo & Ramon Obon, Adaptation – Ramon Obon, Producer – Pedro Galindo Aguilar, Photography – Raul Martinez Solares, Music – Jesus Zarzosa, Special Effects – Ricardo Sainz. Production Company – Filmadora Chapultepec, S.A.

Cast

Santo (Himself), Juan Gallardo (Boris Licur), Sasha Montenegro (Karen Bernstein), Carlos Agosti (Malkosh), Marco Antonio Campos (Chief O’Connor), Carlos Suarez (Professor Bernstein)


Plot

After four people are killed by monstrous creatures, Santo is called in to help by Chief O’Connor. They receive a televised message from Malkosh who threatens further deaths if he is not paid ten million in gold bars. When they vacillate, Malkosh follows through on his promise and others are killed. Santo hides aboard the plane delivering the gold but is captured by Malkosh and forced to fight in an arena. Defeated, Malkosh reveals that the creatures are microscopic alien spores brought back in a Moon rock that have grown into monsters after contact with Earth atmosphere. Santo then contacts Karen, whose father Professor Bernstein has been kidnapped by Boris Licur to try and make the alien organisms more controllable. Together Santo and Karen set out to rescue her father and stop Licur.


Mexico has a tradition of lucha libre wrestling in which the wrestlers appear in the ring with their face hidden behind masks. The most famous of these was El Santo (The Saint in English), more commonly just Santo – or to give him his birth name Rodolfo Guzman Huerta (1917-82). After great success in the ring, Santo developed a cinematic career in the late 1950s and quickly became a screen superhero, placing his masked brawn up against various criminals and fantastical nemeses. He appeared in 52 films between 1958 and 1982 (see below for a listing of these) and both his son and grandson went on to make their own films.

During his cinematic career, Santo managed to come up against fairly much every monster or fantastical threat there was – several rounds with Dracula and assorted vampires, various werewolves and Frankenstein, even Frankenstein’s daughter, as well as mummies, alien invaders, witches, ghosts and visits to Atlantis and the Bermuda Triangle. Santo in “Killers from Other Worlds” was at least the second occasion on which Santo took on alien invaders, having previously been through Santo vs the Martians (1967). Although this time the threat is less an all-out alien invasion than an amorphous mass akin to The Blob (1958). Even then the two different mobsters who are using the alien creatures for their own end tend to be far more prominent a threat than the monsters do – the alien creature (or creatures – it is difficult to tell if there is just one or many) turn up every so often to rumble its way into various rooms like some sort of giant ambulatory bean bag and there is a climax that involves it pursuing Santo, the scientist and his daughter across the countryside.

Santo in “Killers from Other Worlds” is fairly cheesy and indifferently handled on most respects. While some of the earlier Santo films were made with care and even occasionally style, around this period Santo was appearing in some 3-4 films every year and most of them were slung together with the minimal effort with which the B movie studios of the 1940s put out films. The bean bag monster looks exactly like something that would have turned up in the cheaply budgeted episodes of Doctor Who (1963-89) around this same period or perhaps even more so the Z-movie classic The Creeping Terror (1964). It is as though the production crew had covered a bunch of extras in rubber and got them to blindly move in all directions at once. The alien menace also suffers from the script not having a clear idea what it is meant to be doing or where it comes from – at different points, it is variously said to come from The Moon and another galaxy. Santo engages in one or two fights throughout, although the only wrestling match we see him take place in is one where he is imprisoned by Carlos Agosti’s mobster and made to fight three menaces that turn up from nowhere – it is never made clear who they are or how they teleport in – in a series of dully directed fight scenes.

The other Santo films (all being genre films unless stated) are:- The Evil Brain/Santo vs the Evil Brain (1958), The Infernal Men (1958), Santo vs the Zombies/Invasion of the Zombies (1961), Santo vs the King of Crime (non-genre, 1961), Santo in the Hotel of Death (1961), Santo vs the Diabolical Brain (1962), Santo vs the Vampire Women/Samson vs. the Vampire Women (1962), Santo in the Wax Museum (1963), Santo vs the Strangler (1963), Santo vs the Ghost of the Strangler (1963), a cameo appearance in Blue Demon vs Satanic Power (1964), Santo in the Attack of the Witches/The Witches Attack (1964), The Diabolical Axe (1964), Santo in Grave Robbers (1965), Baron Brakola (1965), Santo and the Villains of the Ring (non-genre, 1966), Operation 67 (1966), Santo in the Treasure of Moctezuma (1967), Santo vs the Martians (1967), Santo and the Treasure of Dracula (1968), Santo vs Capulia (1968), Santo vs Blue Demon in Atlantis (1969), Santo and Blue Demon vs the Monsters (1969), Santo and Blue Demon in the World of the Dead (1969), Santo vs the Headhunters (1969), Santo Faces Death/Santo vs the Mafia Killers (non-genre, 1969), Santo vs the Terror Riders (1970), Santo and the Vengeance of the Vampire Women (1970), Santo vs the Mafia of Vice (1970), Santo in the Vengeance of the Mummy (1970), The Mummies of Guanjuato (1970), The Royal Eagle (1971), Santo in the Mystery of the Black Pearl (1971), Santo vs Frankenstein’s Daughter (1971), Suicide Mission (non-genre, 1971), Santo and Blue Demon vs the Wolfman (1972), Santo vs the Kidnappers (1972), Santo vs Black Magic (1972), The Beasts of Terror (1972), Santo vs the She-Wolves (1972), Anonymous Death Threat (non-genre, 1972), Santo and Blue Demon vs Dr Frankenstein (1973), Santo vs Dr Death/Santo Strikes Again (1973), Santo in the Mystery of the Black Pearl (1974), Santo in the Revenge of the Crying Woman (1974), Santo in Black Gold (1975), The Bermuda Mystery (1977), Santo at the Border of Terror (1979), Santo vs the TV Killer (1981), a cameo appearance in Chanoc and Son of Santo vs the Vampire Killers (1981), The Fist of Death (1982) and Fury of the Karate Killers (1982). Son of Santo has also appeared in five films. (An excellent article detailing each of the films can be found here at (Re)search My Trash).



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