It's Lost's Room 23, only more perverted. A naked woman's strapped down and shown images of flowers, cats, Buddhas... all in the name of hacking her consciousness. It's the only scene worth watching from the Ilsa movies. And very NSFW.

The Ilsa series, which begins with Ilsa, She Wolf Of The S.S., is a good argument that yes, exploitation movies really can go too far. It's also proof that our culture has not gone downhill, at least not in the past 35 years. I've never actually been able to sit through more than about five minutes of an Ilsa film — and I can sit through almost anything. Violent, offensive and utterly ludicrous, these movies redefine the concept of "trash cinema" — by dragging it down into a sewer.


(For a dissenting view, here's an interview with the movies' star, Dyanne Thorne, who saw Ilsa as the "female James Bond.")

I hadn't even tried to watch one of these horrendously unwatchable films in years, but the other day someone recommended this bit, from Ilsa, Tigress Of Siberia. And it really is insane — the electrodes, the brain science, the idea that they're bombarding her with pictures of kittens in order to find out what she fears. (What if she fears kittens? It could happen!) And then they plunge her into a nightmare world of iguanas! And snakes! Eeeeeeee! What really makes it work is the coda, in which we see Don Romando, the other victim of this mind-control technique.

Later, Ilsa subjects her rival Andrei to the technique, and it turns out that his biggest fear is being castrated by a psychedelic Ilsa. (She's wearing sort of drag queen makeup, and she bites his penis off.) Observing this, the real Ilsa says, "So, Chikurin. You shall see how fantasy becomes reality."

Like I said, the Ilsa films are to be avoided in general, unless you've got a lot of money for therapy bills. But anybody who loves psychedelic scenes of electrodes, mind probes and brain-hacking has to love this one weird sequence. It's right up there with Blofeld teaching women to love chickens.




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