S.L.I.F.F. Review: ‘Mil Mascaras: Resurrection’
Hey, you got your Aztec mummy movie in my Lucha film! Ã‚ No, you got your Lucha film in my Aztec mummy movie! Ã‚ With ‘Mil Mascaras: Resurrection’, two of the most famous series in the classic age of Mexican horror films converge.
The sport of Lucha Libre professional wrestling became so popular in the ’40s and ’50s that a genre of Luchador films was spawned. Ã‚ Beginning in 1952, Luchador films ran roughshod throughout the ’50s, ’60s’, and even into the ’70s. Ã‚ Mil Mascaras (A Thousand Masks) was the first lucha libre wrestler to be created specifically for this genre of films. Ã‚ With ‘Mil Mascaras: Resurrection’, he makes his 18th feature film appearance.
This time around, Mascaras must contend with the evil Aztec Mummy, but the story isn’t quite that simple. Ã‚ In fact, it’s downright excruciating how complex this film eventually gets. Ã‚ There’s a human-sized robot, a couple of vampire women, and all of the great living lucha stars under one mind-numbingly kitschy roof. Ã‚ Somewhere in there Harley Race and PJ Soles pop up for a split second or two.
‘Mil Mascaras: Resurrection’ is the kind of film that one can pretty much only enjoy when they are sitting around with a bunch of friends. Ã‚ It’s difficult to enjoy the film for what it is, because the production values here are so low. Ã‚ There is one point where one of the mummy’s henchmen transforms his appearance. Ã‚ The transformation effects in 1940s, Universal horror films were pulled off better than this. Ã‚ The mummy looks like a reject from a half-completed, haunted house. Ã‚ For an example of this only better, see Frank Langella’s getup as Skeletor in the 1987 version of ‘Masters of the Universe’.
This is to say nothing of the outfits adorned by the actual wrestlers. Ã‚ I’m sure most of those costumes were brought to the set by the wrestlers, themselves. Ã‚ Mascaras himself seems to be wearing as much in robes and tights as the rest of the budget times two. Ã‚ The Aztec Mummy has a giant scepter with a blue jewel on top, and it looks suspiciously like a glued on ring pop. Ã‚ I’m thinking blue raspberry from the looks of it.
The acting involved is painfully dreadful. Ã‚ Just about everyone seems to have been getting line readings between takes. Ã‚ It doesn’t help that Mascaras is clearly speaking Spanish with a dubbed English voiceover. Ã‚ It’s just hilarious to see people respond in perfect English to this.
But, do we really see ‘Mil Mascaras: Resurrection’ for its high quality effects and Shakespearean acting?
We see it for the wrestling and the craziness and the unintelligible fight scenes that make Mighty Morphin Power Rangers look like UFC. Ã‚ That’s why we see ‘Mil Mascaras: Resurrection’.
So be warned. Ã‚ There is some fun to be had in watching this film. Ã‚ Unfortunately, you probably won’t be doing that on your own. Ã‚ You’ll be doing it with your buddies at around midnight howling with laughter at all the low-budget absurdity that is playing out before you. Ã‚ ‘Mil Mascaras: Resurrection is a film that definitely falls under the category of “so bad it’s good”. [Overall: 3 stars out of 5]
Festival Screening Date: Friday, November 21 @ 11:15 pm (Tivoli)