Mill of the Stone Women

January 28, 2012 4 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

A lot of small towns in Holland are home to windmills, but only has a landmark known as The Carousel of Stone Women. This windmill is most unusual, as it houses lifelike, actual size stone women, who look real enough to give you chills. The mill is owned by Gregorius Wahl (Herbert Bohme), who makes a nice coin from his attraction. The tourists flock to his windmill, though no one knows the secrets of his incredible landmark. The stone women move thanks to the gears and cogs, but there is a strange atmosphere throughout the windmill. Hans von Arnam (Pierre Brice) has come to the mill to uncovers it secrets, to research all aspects of the operation, analyze the facts, and make some kind of conclusion. Wahl is kind to the visitor despite his intentions, so he opens up the mill to his examination, shows him diagrams and such, and offers his total cooperation. All he asks in return is a five day examination instead of ten, which seems reasonable. In addition to his work at the mill, Hans burns some time with an old flame, Liselotte (Dany Carrel). As potent as that rekindled love is, Hans is soon drawn to Elfy (Scilla Gabel), the eccentric daughter of Wahl. She is dark and mysterious, which makes her impossible for Hans to resist. Will Hans complete his tasks as planned and if so, what dark secrets are hidden within the mill?

Why do passionate young women suddenly turn to stone? Such is the question posed in Mill of the Stone Women, presented here in a complete, uncut version. The film isn’t a high profile one, but it deserves more attention, if you ask me. Although elements of traditional horror can be found, Mill of the Stone Women is more of a supernatural thriller. In other words, the movie relies more on eerie atmosphere and potent visuals, rather than bloodshed and cheap scares. So if you’re in the mood for loads of gore or naked women, this isn’t the movie you want. As much as I love blood and babes, I didn’t miss those elements much here, thanks to Giorgio Ferroni’s terrific direction. He infuses a gothic texture to Mill of the Stone Women, which uses simple elements such as shadows and light to create an atmosphere of unease. I do think the slow, deliberate pace will alienate some genre fans, but in truth, little time is burned here. A few scenes could be tighter, but in order to build that tense, eerie atmosphere, a slower pace is required. This is not the typical cult horror movie, but it is well done and more than warrants a look. Mondo Macabro has issued the uncut version with three audio options, plus a nice assortment of bonus materials. So if you’re a fan of cult cinema, then Mill of the Stone Women is well recommended.

Video: How does it look?

Audio: How does it sound?

Supplements: What are the extras?

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