Motion Picture Purgatory: The Whip and the Body

Now this is how to celebrate the holidays — with a whip and a body! Oh, what? We’re not talking about Uncle Creepy’s and my family traditions? Nope — we’re talking Mario Bava’s 1963 kinky little ghost story entitled La frusta e il corpo (The Whip and the Body).

Kurt Menliff (Christopher Lee) is a ruthless and sadistic 19th Century nobleman who returns to his seafront castle home after years of wandering. He finds himself immediately at odds with his invalid father, a Count (Dean Ardow), as well as Kurt’s spineless younger brother, Christian (Tony Kendall), who is married to Kurt’s cousin and former lover Nevenka (Daliah Lavi). When Kurt is found in his room on the next night, murdered, suspicion falls on everyone, which gets more complicated when Nevenka begins seeing his ghost (real or imaginary?) haunting the castle, supposedly wanting revenge against his killers.

“Don’t doublethink the kink!”

Rick Trembles' The Whip and the Body review!

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Debi Moore

I'll see you on the other side...

  • Floydian Trip

    Bava is one of the Grandfather’s of horror. Well Italian horror at least. I wish it’d make a comeback. I’m all for the French but there are some talented directors in Italy.

  • unclebob

    “What” has colored my opinion of Bava for decades. I suppose I should’ve been reading Lucas on Bava all these years, but after seeing “What,” I’d remained disinterested in everything Bava other than Black Sabbath.

    In fact, it was “What” that turned me off to all of giallo.