Marc Campbell previously drew our attention to Mondo Balordo, with his post on Franz Drago: 27 inches of swingin’ dynamite. Though not a classic of the shockumentary genre, Mondo Balordo (1964) continued the trend of exploitation documentary devised by Gualtiero Jacopetti and Franco Prosperi, with Mondo Cane (1962) and La Donna nel Mondo (aka Women of the World).
Directed by Roberto Bianchi Montero and Albert T Viola, Mondo Balordo has some classic bizarre moments, and a commentary by none other than horror legend, Boris Karloff.
Our World…What a wild and fascinating place it is! Filled with love, hate, lust and all the hungers and driving passions by which the strange creature called man is possessed.
Karloff’s association with the film, and billing, gave it a certain amount of respectability. However, the sixties was an odd decade for Karloff as the great septuagenarian actor continued to churn out a volume of films enviable in a man half his age. Though he made some excellent films during that decade, Peter Bogdanovich’s Targets, Roger Corman’s The Raven and The Comedy of Terrors, and Michael Reeves The Sorcerers, he did make some of his worst Cauldron of Blood, The Incredible Invasion, La muerte viviente.
Mondo Balordo is a novelty for Karloff fans, a distracting piece of bizarro movie-making, tasteless in places, though not necessarily for the reasons the film-makers originally intended. The whole film is available below, and here’s how the producers sold it:
Horror icon Boris Karloff wittily narrates Mondo Balordo, a shocking and depraved mondo movie that chronicles perversions and abnormalities from around the globe. You will be unable to look away as your eyes fill with shocking images that will burn scars into your retina and render you paralyzed in your seat. Grotesque and exploitive, but also riveting and defiant of taboo, Mondo Balordo seeks out the most twisted and surprising images. Subjects explored in graphic detail are dwarf love, white female sex slavery, Eastern brothels, black-market smuggling, marijuana, lesbianism, needless dog surgery and the phenomenon of raincoat-clad peeping toms. Experience Mondo Balordo if you dare!
Previously on DM