Retro Review: Wild Flore Dances The Mephisto Waltz


If God can´t help you, then the devil will.

“WHENEVER YOU FIGHT THE MONSTER, WHENEVER YOU FIND YOURSELF FACE TO FACE WITH THE BEAST… YOU INEVITABLY WILL END UP TURNING INTO THE MONSTER, YOU´LL LOOK INTO THE MIRROR AND ALL YOU´LL SEE IS THE BEAST THAT WAS RESTING INSIDE.

MY FRIEND ARE YOU AWARE OF THIS? HAVE YOU EVER REALIZED THE MONSTER WAS ABOUT TO RISE?”.

Do you think you need to paint your face, grab an electric guitar, and eat a    bat´s head to shock the audience? Well… sometimes all you need is a piano, the right chords, two talented hands and of course why not a pact with the devil.

Mephisto waltz was named after the famous piano piece composed by Franz Liszt with the same name, and if you are asking yourself now, what the hell does this have to do with horror? Let me tell you, sometimes you don´t need lyrics to tell a story, this waltz is about Faust, a depressive Doctor who sells his soul to an evil entity called Mephistopheles; this piece particularly tells the story of Faust and the demon (which name means WHO RUNS AWAY FROM LIGHT) breaking into a wedding, seducing the wife with music and taking her away to the woods for some perversion.

The main character, Myles Clarkson is a frustrated musician who decides to be a music journalist after receiving bad critics as a pianist, but one day Myles has the great opportunity to interview the most remarkable pianist of the 20th century. This old man is called Duncan Ely, and they become friends right after shaking hands.  Myles is not only attracted to the pianist´s fame and way of living, he is also charmed by his beautiful young daughter, Roxane, there´s some sort of fire between them.

It looks like the perfect time for the journalist to get back into the music business as a real musician, and he can´t miss it, but his wife, Paula, is a very clever woman, and she mistrusts hospitality, though she has no other option than standing next to her beloved husband and support him. The old pianist, suffers a terrible disease and his days are counted, what could be better than a pact with the devil? No one can live forever, but what he has in mind is so much better than that, just abandon his geriatric mortal body and get a young, handsome and brand-new shape.

As a known fact if you sell your soul to Satan, he will ask for more, by the time Duncan passes away, Paula knows there is something going on with her husband, their sexual life is more active than ever, he acts selfish and greedy, he plays the piano the way he never played before, and clearly she is not the only woman in his life anymore…Roxane, is the one who wants the soul an body, and Myles´s wife wants his husband back, even if the only thing left she can have is his body, ruled by another soul.

“waltz, the pagan master, waltz, his evil shines, waltz, to the devil depot, waltz, gonna be so great”, Glenn Danzig wrote this back in 1986, the song writer and singer is a well-known horror fan and this song gets the same name than the movie, which is one of his favorites, as he said on an interview, stories like this are scarier than some guy in makeup.  “Without a blink I go, to the devil´s ballet”, sure all of us will go there, a New Year’s Eve party, drinks, music, sexy devilish women (sex! Sex! Sex!), a dog wearing a human mask, it can´t be less than great, and reminds us of the witches´ Sabbats.

The wife starts investigating, she starts doing researches, her daughter died of unknown causes, and all those who died on weird circumstances wear a blue mark on their foreheads as an omen… they are Satanists, these people are Dark Lord worshipers in topnotch disguises, all she can do is summon the devil, play with the same cards they are playing, turn herself into the dark side too, try to find an appropriate solution to bring back her husband and live “happily” ever after.  well… so silly of her to do all this, I mean, why couldn’t she just go and get the damn divorce? Just set the man free, start a new life!  yeah… okay, okay, we would be speaking by now about a “sex and the city” movie and not about this horror classic.

The film, directed by Paul Wendkos, has everything needed to call our attention, a young couple fall into the arms of high class Satanists, demonic pacts, a 70’s style house, psychedelic dreams, Jacqueline Bisset as the wife, the femme fatale Barbara Parkins as the intriguing incestuous daughter, both look like they are about to take each other´s eyes out, so I leave you now, and please take my advice:  Beware who you marry with and who you let enter your life…. you may not know someone until it´s already too late!