Corpse Mania is one of those titles that makes me immediately think of those insane, bug-infested, gross-out, black magic movies that proliferated in Hong Kong during the early 80s; but although this film does have its fair share of creepy-crawlies, what the movie most closely resembles seems far less likelya giallo!
Just like those Italian murder mysteries, Corpse Mania features stylish cinematography that makes maximum use of vivid colours and strong lighting, a mysterious killer who keep his face well hidden (in this case wearing a scarf, dark glasses and a hat to disguise himself), red herrings aplenty, several bloody death scenes, and a silly ending in which the killer's true identity is finally revealed (along with the reason why they're making such a mess in the first place). As is common with this kind of fare, not everything makes perfect sense (particularly so with my version, in which the English subtitles were partially obscured), and sometimes the going is tough during the less lurid moments, but the film's creative visuals and a general willingness to offend make it reasonably entertaining nonsense nonetheless.
During the course of his film, director Chih-Hung Kuei presents his viewers with not one, but two scenes of necrophilia (this is where we are treated to some delightful shots of completely naked dead women smothered in writhing maggots), a pretty cool decapitation, several gory knife attacks, and a body falling from a height and going splat on impact with the ground; there is also a well orchestrated moment of tension which sees a woman struggling to raise the alarm as she is gradually pulled beneath her bed, some inexplicably surreal behaviour from the necrophiliac, who rubs a corpse with a big furry glove before eventually getting jiggy with it, and this being a Shaw Brothers production, we even get a smattering of kung fu action.
6.5 out of 10, rounded up to 7 for IMDb.
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