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Plot:

In this adaptation of Tolstoy’s story the Wurdulak, a mentally ill patient known as Nicola (Gianni Garko) flashes back to horrifying experiences that he encountered while driving through the country. Upon damaging his car, Nicola sets out for help, only to meet a mysterious family that lives in total fear of someone or something. This evil force slowly penetrates the household and thrusts each of its members into a frenzy of absolute terror!

Also Known As: La noche de los diablos, The Night of the Devils, La notte dei diavoli, Az ördögök éjszakája, I nyhta ton diavolon, Az éjszaka ördögei, La nuit des diables, Akuma no hohoemi, Demonen der nacht, Ночь дьяволов Soviet, Dasos vrykolakon, Djävulens natt, A Noite dos Dêmonios, Night of the Devils

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  • velta-bite
    velta bite

    Based on a book I’ve never read (Aleksei Tolstoy’s The Family of the Vourdalak), Night of the Devils deals with the supernatural creature known as the wurdulac (also spelled wurdalak, vourdalak or verdilak), a type of Eastern European vampire that is compelled to drink the blood of its loved ones, thereby converting the whole family.Lumber importer Nicolas (Gianni Garko) encounters such monsters in a Yugoslavian forest. After pranging his car, he sets off on foot to find help, eventually meeting a family who live in a house in the woods, where he is invited to stay the night. Nicolas is intrigued when his hosts barricade all of the doors and windows at nightfall; he eventually discovers that the family is plagued by a wurdulac that comes a-calling once it is dark.With a very measured pace, this isn’t going to be for everyone, but fans of atmospheric Euro-horror will be delighted by the creepy vibe throughout and some genuinely tense moments, the best being Nicola’s frantic escape from the woods in his car (attacked by wurdulacs and mocked by ghoulish wurdulac children), and the gripping finalé, which packs a neat downbeat twist.Meanwhile, those who enjoy a spot of gore and nudity will be pleased to know that are some juicy moments of splatter (a woman’s face exploding, a beating heart removed from a body, severed fingers, and several bloody stakings, all courtesy of FX man Carlo Rambaldi) and a fair amount of T&A (ravishing Agostina Belli, as Nicola’s love interest Sdenka, sheds all for her art, while Teresa Gimpera has her top torn open by one of the vampiric kids).N.B. The wurdulac also appears in Mario Bava’s classic horror compendium Black Sabbath, a film I’ve yet to see (I know, I know… and I call myself a horror fan).

  • johan-larsson
    johan larsson

    Man crashes car and is taken in by a family. Something weird is going on and he finds out they all believe there are vampires who are lurking outside at night time.And that’s about it. The film just kinda goes on for ages without anything really happening. It’s very, very slow and uneventful.It turns out there are vampires but there’s no action in this film and it doesn’t build up to anything.

  • damiano-guerra
    damiano guerra

    I much prefer Bava’s version of this tale. This one is okay, but a bit of a slow mover. It is, however, atmospheric and claustrophobic throughout. It is very much so towards the end and the last 15 minutes alone is worth the watch of the whole movie.The film is a vampire movie, but not in the classic sense. These vampires prefer to keep things in the family or with their lovers. It adds an interesting twist – what do you do when a family member or loved one has turned? You’ll find through the movie that people react differently and reap the benefits or pay the consequences of their actions.Nicola, an innocent bystander of sorts, has the misfortune of breaking down in the middle of nowhere and ends up sheltering with the family. He knows that something is amiss when they lock up their house tight every night and won’t let anyone go out after dark. He also finds out that they are the only family left in the town. He overhears cryptic conversations between family members. After his car is repaired and he witnesses a murder, he decides to go to the police who aren’t much help. He goes back to the house to pursue a romantic relationship with the daughter which results in some unpleasantness :).Overall, it is a pretty good film, but one of the things that bugs me about old euro horror is that often the soundtrack contains operatic voices singing part of it. This one is not an exception. A minor point, but it can really run my nerves.And just in case you didn’t know, this film was originally done in Italian – it is dubbed which some people can’t manage. For me, as long as the movie is good, I don’t really care (BLACK Sunday, anyone?)Also, be aware that this movie was made in the 70’s, so the special effects and gore are going to be appropriate for that time. I’ve never understood reviewers who say a movie looks dated when it was made decades ago. Of course it is going to look dated.And finally, there is some nudity – quite common in older euro films. If you are into older euro horror, and don’t mind slow paces, give it a watch!

  • pani-anastazja-zimniak
    pani anastazja zimniak

    I first saw it on Spanish TV centuries ago. Back then I got into the film during its second half, not knowing what it was about, and at the end I thought it was worth watching. Then many years later I found it in YouTube -the image quality was dreadful, and -as I now can tell- it was a truncated Italian dubbed version. And finally recently I found in the internet a Spanish-speaking version with scenes cut from the one I saw before and with a superb quality image, and I downloaded it. I love the film, and I’ve been looking for the DVD here in London for months. I couldn’t find it anywhere. So I’m keeping my downloaded copy for the time being. The ideal treat for a late rainy Saturday night: I alone in my home, a bottle of Scotch to keep me company for a couple of hours, and this atmospheric chiller.

  • ana-clara-sales
    ana clara sales

    A man in rough shape walks weakly like a zombie. He winds up at a hospital. There’s a barrage of strange images, a meaty skull with worms, half of a woman’s head exploding, followed by the other half, X-rays of a skull. Pretty surreal start, but it normalizes from there.The man does not speak. The doctors circulate his photo, and a woman comes to the hospital and can identify the man. He does start talking when he sees her, and freaks out to some extent. She disappears.The man remembers the events that led to him winding up in the hospital. Driving his car on a woodsy road, he gets into an accident and comes across an isolated home. This family has recently buried one of their own. The man grows fond of one of the women, and gradually learns about the dead man, and the family’s fears. The external SciFilm review of this film raises some of the same points I would have made.The story this was based on, never translated into English as far as I know, was also adapted by Mario Bava as one of the segments of Black Sabbath. Bava, not surprisingly, did a much better job. This director is OK, but his other horror film, Mill of the Stone Women is quite a bit better. I recommend those two movies over this one.

  • sonya-brown
    sonya brown

    I’ve seen this movie many times and it is very good and scary. Even i like the story of Aleksey Tolstoi, which this movie is based of. This is one of the best atmospheric horror-movies. Agostina Belli is so beautiful and a much more believable Sdenka than Susy Andersen was in Mario Bavas Black Sabbath. I love this twist ending much more than the ending of Bavas Wurdelak. In Germany we’ve a third version of this story as an audio play and a third different ending. So far as i know, none of these three endings is true to the original story. This film is a must have for everyone, who likes vampire-movies. Why did this great movie never got an official DVD-Release yet? I can’t understand it…It is a shame that the only version i could get worldwide is an DVD-R, a bootleg from Midnight Video. It’s an English version with Japanese subtitles. I really hope that some day there will be an official release and that this film will get the attention it deserves! By the way, the story of A. Tolstoi, which this film is based off, was written and first released in 1847, so it is 50 years older than Bram Stokers Dracula(1897). Sadly, that there are only 2 filmed versions of this wonderful story until today yet. Filmmakers should better make an wonderful new interpretation of this stuff as the 1000st. waste version of Dracula. Neither this movie nor Bavas Episode Wurdelak in Black Sabbath could come close to the original story by Tolstoi. Another interesting thing is that the village Tolstois story plays in really existed in the 18th century. It was called Kisolova and many people died there by an unknown disease.

  • martina-rastija
    martina rastija

    Never heard of this one! Gianni Garko, scratched, bloody, and having crazy visions, stumbles out of the woods and collapses. He is found and taken to the nearest nut house, where Dr Umberto Raho starts performing tests on him. Gianni is unresponsive and doesn’t even seem to know his name, and only comes alive at night, where the darkness makes him really nervous. He REALLY comes alive when a mysterious woman shows up at the hospital, causing him to go completely insane and ends up wearing a nice comfy straightjacket while we witness a lengthy flashback.You see Gianni was merely driving through the Yugoslavian countryside when a freak accident forced his car off the road. He eventually finds his way to a country house (not noticing the two men burying a corpse in a bloodied sheet), and finds himself in the company of a very frightened family indeed. What we have here is another Italian film version of the Tosltoy novella The Family of the Vourdalak, and despite the other version being directed by Mario Bava and being great, this version holds it’s own too. Basically there’s a witch running around the woods who has turned that guy they just buried into a vampire and now the head of the family must go out and kill her. He warns everyone that if he returns after six o’clock, he must be killed on the spot, so naturally he comes back at that time…and all hell breaks loose in the family household.This version takes its time to get to the chills, but still manages to convey the tension and horror that’s needed. Those creepy kids help too, as does Gianni’s mounting terror of what’s unfolding around him. There’s a thick atmosphere about the film too, with the animal skulls lying around and the reluctance of the family to explain to Gianni what’s going on.There’s also a nice ambiguous ending too, just for kicks. Some gore and boobs for those that thought that was missing from Bava’s version. Melting faces too, and who can hate a film where someone’s face explodes?Not I….not….I…

  • cesidia-testa
    cesidia testa

    Considering that I only acquired a major affinity for “Euro-Cult” fare following my attendance of the “Italian Kings Of The B” retrospective first held during the 2004 Venice Film Festival, it is small wonder that I had been largely underwhelmed by what I sampled from this particular fount of movie lore beforehand; curiously enough, among these had been two distinct adaptations of Tolstoy’s “The Wurdulak”, namely an episode in Mario Bava’s omnibus BLACK SABBATH (1963) and the picture under review!Being about to revisit the former on account of Bava’s recent centenary, I opted to re-acquaint myself with Ferroni’s feature-length version as well – having already done similar duty with two films based on the same tale (also Russian in origin) which had inspired Bava’s BLACK Sunday (1960). Incidentally, in my comments relating to the Maestro’s take on “I Wurdulak”, I had surmised about how padded Ferroni’s rendition would be in comparison: however, he works around this factor, so to speak, admirably by updating the plot to our times (while retaining the essential Gothic feel and, thus, accentuating its inherent eeriness!) and bookending it with scenes inside a clinic, to where the disoriented protagonist (in this case, Gianni Garko) had been taken after barely escaping with his life from the clutches of the undead family unit at the core of the narrative.There is no doubt that Ferroni had watched Bava’s version – as its numerous shots of characters peering ominously through windows can attest – yet he opts to dilate what is perhaps its most chilling moment (the ‘afflicted’ child pleading with his mother to be sheltered from the cold, dark night and the woman being unable to resist her instincts lets him in, despite knowing full well that her offspring had just been laid down into the ground!) by having the mother merely go out to look for her in this case!! Other elements which tend not to work here are: the personification of the witch (who is the cause of the hero’s getting stranded in the quasi-deserted Yugoslavian village to begin with!) and her face-off with the patriarch (himself – though reasonably authoritative – clearly no match for horror icon Boris Karloff, his counterpart in BLACK SABBATH) whose resolution is, thankfully, still left ambiguous; also, the fact that the family members get all giggly when, as vampires, they descend en masse upon the beleaguered Garko. That said, his somewhat hysterical characterization is poles apart from that of Mark Damon in the original – who remains decidedly (and, perhaps, unrealistically) cool throughout his ordeal! Even so, while there is a poignancy to Garko’s murder of Agostina Belli – who he had thought had joined the vampiric ranks and was now seeking to add the hero to their fold in view of her feelings towards him (and suggesting how psychologically scarred he had been by the whole experience) – the sequence is rather clumsily handled overall, as the girl should have made it immediately apparent to him that she had not ‘turned’!The passage of nearly a decade between versions allowed for greater emphasis this time around on gory make-up effects; indeed, I recall having counted the film’s entire ghoulish vibe (appropriate though it may be) as a drawback upon first viewing! Incidentally, even if I had long bemoaned my erasing of that preliminary copy, I realize now – via a side-by-side comparison of two prints floating about (another one, which I also own, is English-dubbed, subtitled in Japanese and has its few moments of nudity digitally-covered!) – that it was missing a surreal nightmare sequence at the very start!! By the way, director Ferroni – whose penultimate work this proved to be and whom I learned, from the accompanying Gianni Garko interview, was virtually deaf! – had previously helmed a key entry in the Italian Gothic Horror canon, i.e. MILL OF THE STONE WOMEN (1960). Interestingly, too, he died on my 5th birthday (17th August) in 1981…a date also shared by the original Italian release of BLACK SABBATH itself!

  • melissa-williamson
    melissa williamson

    Weary traveler Nicola (a fine and credible performance by Gianna Garko) seeks refuge at the secluded home of a backwoods family after his car breaks down in the middle of nowhere. Unbeknownst to Nicola, the family are afflicted by a centuries old curse involving a deadly vampiric being called the Wurdulak.Director Giorgio Ferroni relates the compelling story at a gradual, yet still hypnotic pace, does a masterful job of crafting and sustaining a supremely spooky and unsettling atmosphere, makes sound use of the desolate and isolated country setting, and certainly doesn’t skimp on both the hideous graphic gore and arousing explicit sex and nudity. Better yet, this film not only effectively presents a rich and fascinating depiction of a bucolic and folkloric netherworld steeped deep in dread, superstition, and ancient traditions, but also delivers a fresh and unique spin on the standard vampire premise. The excellent acting from a top-rate cast qualifies as another significant asset, with especially stand-out contributions from the ravishing Agostina Belli as the sweet and naive Sdenka, Roberto Maldera as the sullen Jovan, Bill Vanders as stern patriarch Gorca, and Luis Suurez as the antsy Vlado. The startling downbeat ending packs a devastating wallop. Kudos are also in order for both Manuel Berenguer’s sumptuous widescreen cinematography and Giorgio Gaslini’s exquisitely eerie score. Recommended viewing for aficionados of moody European fright fare.

  • sigita-ambrasas
    sigita ambrasas

    An amnesiac man, haunted by memories of torture, is undergoing a rigorous psychiatric assessment after he was found wandering, dishevelled, close to the Italian border.The medical team are trying to figure out who this man is, and what exactly happened to him. When suddenly, a mysterious woman shows up claiming the man’s name is Nicola and that he works as a lumber importer. She says she hardly knows him, but when she confronts the man…he freaks out…before she seemingly disappears without a trace.The memories of the man start to seep back to him in a flashback. It turns out he isn’t an amnesiac at all. Rather, someone who has had an experience so traumatic, that all prior memories have become repressed- causing him to slip into a state of madness. Though, one that just may be warranted in his particular case…He recalls taking a short cut through the woods and getting his car stuck on a stump after crashing it in an attempt to avoid a woman- who also just disappears after.In an attempt to find help, he recalls wandering through the woods, where he happens upon a family of backwoods hick-types. They agree to help him…but not until the morning. They invite him inside, before proceeding to tightly bar all doors and windows…to protect themselves from what lurks outside at night.It turns out that the family is being tormented by a cursed witch- actually a varadluk (or vampire). This woman had recently targeted the head of the family’s brother- forcing them to euthanize him with a wooden stake to the heart.Nicola has a hard time believing what he is being confronted with, but has- by this point- fallen deeply in love with one of the young women in the family- Sdenka.After witnessing the disappearance and murder of more family members (while still suffering from cognitive dissonance), Nicola decides to flee for help- asking Sdenka to join him. But she cannot leave her family behind under the circumstances, so she requests that he return for her…and not go to the police, in the meantime.He quickly discovers that the local townspeople are of no help (they suggest he forget about it). So, he returns to fetch Sdenka. Only to discover it’s too late. So late, in fact…he has to fight and flee just to escape with his own life! An experience which has rendered him into his current psychological state.Apparently Sdenka is the mysterious woman who suddenly shows up at the hospital, requesting to see him. Hence why he goes all crazy in her presence…knowing she has come back for the one she loves…him.But is he truly a victim of a supernatural reality? Or is it all in his head? While relatively basically constructed, this is a rather enjoyable vampire flick. The atmosphere is quite mysterious. And I love how the writers exploit a loophole in the legend to propagate the curse. The vampires- while simple- are quite freaky…particularly the children. There are some great traditional special effects thrown in there too. Older vampire films are so much better than the modern incarnations because simple just works better sometimes. As this film is a testament to.6.5 out of 10

  • katrin-pikk
    katrin pikk

    Nicolas is found wandering aimlessly at a beach and is taken to a hospital where his horrific story is told through flashbacks; He have a car accident in the Yugoslavian countryside and finds a house where he gets shelter for the night. He hears strange noises during the night and in the morning he’s told about the witch that lives in the forest. The witch killed Yorga’s borther (Yorga is the father in the family he stays with) and the brother came back at exactly 6 pm the next day, transformed into a Vardaluk (some sort of zombie). Nikolas falls in love with Sdenka, Yorga’s daughter, and stays with the family. Yorga decides to confront the witch and his son Jovan is prepared for the worst. Just like Jovan feared Yorga returns the next day at 6 pm precise and a lot of really bad things starts to happen.This is an interesting movie with a good story, scary music and nice sets but it is a bit to slow moving. The flashback-to-present way of telling the story is pretty effective. There are some memorable scenes like the torture fantasies in the beginning and when Helene’s fingers are cut of by Nicolas’ car door. There are some nudity and sex. The twist ending is great! Some curiosity: The good-looking Agostina Bella (Sdenka) plays the jealous chambermaid in Ivanna. I give this one 7/10.

  • t-eimuraz-t-avaze
    t eimuraz t avaze

    Story about a man who breaks down and seeks shelter with a less than ordinary family with an extraordinary dilemma. Let’s just say things do go bump in the night for this family of the woods.Night of the Devils unfortunately is vastly unseen. It has lots of things going for it, like a cast that is truly gung-ho and some pretty good writing. The atmosphere is dark and ominous which gives the film a really great feel.The film does drag in parts where some scenes will go on for a tad too long, but sometimes this becomes a good thing, because it will strengthen the mood of the film. Also the film struggles with its music at times. The music itself is good, and fitting, but at the same time the timing wasn’t used very well. Instead of letting the scene play out and remain questionable they’d throw in music where it’d make you realize what would take place. Minor issues that barely damage the viewing experience as a whole.Overall the movie was a really good slow-burn flick with pretty strong performances, an eerie vibe and awesome fx work. Though plagued by a decent amount of predictability it still ended up being a very recommendable movie to horror fans who can dig slower films.

  • kovacs-sandor-janos
    kovacs sandor janos

    Giorgio Ferroni’s Night of the Devils (not to be confused with the 1971 film of the same title) is an extremely rare little horror film; but in spite of that, any self respecting fan of Eurohorror will recognise the plot line instantly as it was also used to great effect in the longest segment of the Mario Bava masterpiece ‘Black Sabbath’. While this film is not as good as the middle of Bava’s film, and does feel a little stretched at times; it managed to hold my interest throughout and I’d rate it as a success overall. The film begins with an unknown man stumbling into hospital. He doesn’t make any attempt to identify himself, but soon after an unknown woman turns up and he begins to panic. From there we go back in time as the man remembers the events that lead up to him stumbling into the hospital. It emerges that he had a break down and was forced to stay with a family out in the woods. They are clearly hiding something right from the start and we soon find out that there’s a witch in the woods who has taken their father.Director Giorgio Ferroni is best known for his excellent Gothic horror film Mill of the Stone Women which he made twelve years previously. Overall, I’d have to say that the earlier film is the more successful; but there are shades of the macabre atmosphere that made Mill of the Stone Women a success in this film. It has to be said that the film is rather slow and there are times when it is not very exciting; but this time is used well in building up the atmosphere and it pays off towards the end. The plot line follows basically the same narrative as the one we saw in Bava’s earlier film so the story won’t be much of a surprise to anyone who has seen Black Sabbath. The setting is very well used also and the director ensures that the isolation of it is always at the forefront. The film is not very gory but this is made up for with some memorably disturbing scenes. It all boils down to a very effective ending that certainly justifies the slow build featured throughout the film. Overall, Night of the Devils is a very solid little horror film and is well worth seeing if you can find it!

  • michelle-howell
    michelle howell

    A great, obscure Italian gem from the 70’s, directed by Giorgio Ferroni, “Mill of the Stone Women”. It’s based on the same story as the “Wurdalack” segment of Mario Bava’s “Black Sabbath”, and I consider to be about on the same level of the latter. It’s much more mean-spirited and darker than Bava’s version, and while it may not be as elegant and subtly creepy, this one is quite frightening and suffocatingly atmospheric in it’s own right, with some surprisingly haunting and disturbing set pieces. The characters and the story were much better developed, and unlike “Black Sabbath”, I actually cared for them. The actors also did a pretty good job, with some solid performances. Still, I thought the violence and nudity came off as gratuitous and were not really necessary, and Carlo Rambaldi’s special effects didn’t age very well, specially compared to his other works. Nevertheless, Ferroni’s stylish direction and Georgio Gaslini’s eerie, melancholic score more than make up for it’s flaws. I also loved how the film is slow paced, but never gets boring, always keeping the viewers on the edge of their seats.

  • linda-graham
    linda graham

    I’ve seen this movie many times; I have to say I love this movie because of many reasons : there are scenes that really scare the hell out of me , for example , the witch running through the woods , the animals running , the scenes that create suspense like when Gianni Garko is inside the house and they’re all waiting for the grandpa to come back (and we all know something is happening) Gianni Garko is one of the great actors of the 70s ,he’s been a guest star in “Space 1999”, as well;the movie has got that 70s atmosphere (like in the hospital) mixed with a sense of Hammer Horror , but more low-budget From what I know, the movie was shot near the place I live (North East Italy) close to Slovenja (Yugoslavia, back then) It’s less scary after two or three views, but it’s a very good movie

  • lic-jesus-valles
    lic jesus valles

    “Night of the Devils” is a rare Italian adaptation of the Tolstoy story “Lu Famille du Wurdulak” made by Giorgio Ferroni. The story was also adapted previously for the segment “The Wurdulak” in Mario Bava’s splendid “Black Sabbath”.A man stumbles upon a cottage in the Yugoslavian woods that happens to be inhabited by a family of vampires.Atmospheric Euro horror with vampires,a witch,some horrific gore and full-frontal female nudity tossed in for good measure.Ferroni’s take on Tolstoy story is genuinely moody and atmospheric.The special effects by Carlo Rambaldi are effective and it’s nice to see jaw-droppingly beautiful Teresa Gimpera is one of the supporting roles.I loved “Night of the Devils” and you should too,if you are into Italian Gothic horror.9 out of 10.

  • fernando-young
    fernando young

    It’s always nice to find an obscure gem like this. This film is VERY good. Don’t let the other reviews here fool you. An intelligent viewer who actually WATCHES and takes in all the atmosphere built up will find a lot to reward them. One should not go into this with the typical 2 second attention span so prevalent today. The film is intelligently made and builds slowly but surely. You have to take this as an Italian horror movie from the 70’s to appreciate. All the conventions of this style of film-making are present. The weird dubbing zooms and creepy vocal music are all their and are very effective in creating the proper Euro Horror feel. The director Ferroni was very competent in this genre. It starts off with a bang of weird gore and settles into a slowly building story with a Wizz bang finale, with some of the most off the wall goofines I have ever seen in one of these types of films. It is Definitely worth the wait for the gore and mayhem at the end. The Vurdalak(witch/Vampire) theme is an underdone sub genre and is quite different than the usual Vampire conventions. The very foreign Yugoslavian setting is also a plus.Gianni Garko is quite effective as the lead and has the requisite chemistry to pull off his central role. He also creates sympathy which helps make this better than the average Italian gore movie. The children are also REALLY creepy and effective. Special kudos to Carlo Rambaldi(ET) for his effective 70’s gore effects. This is available form Midnight Video in a Good quality widescreen transfer with slightly annoying Japanese subs. If you are a fan of atmospheric Euro horror this is a must have. A proper DVD release in the Future? I hope so.