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Isla De La Muerte, La

AKA's: Baron Vampire, Le / Bloodsuckers, The (1967) / Death Island / Geheimnis Der Todesinsel, Das / Island Of The Dead / Island Of The Doomed / Man Eater Of Hydra

Release date: 1967 Spain/Germany
Running time: 82' (cover 82'/Spain 88') - Source: VHS PAL
Rating: Germ.: 16; US: NR
Main Crew: Director: Mel Welles (Daughter Of Frankenstein 1971)
Producer: Tefi Film München / Orbita Films
Score: Jose Munoz Molleda / Anton Garcia Abril
Writer: Ira Meltcher / Stephen Schmidt / Mel Welles
Director of photography: Cecilio Paniagua / Juan Marine


Summary: On a botanic island in the Mediterranean a tourist party falls into the hands of a brilliant but crazy scientist. His speciality is the cultivation of carnivore plants, which systematically kills off his guests. When the suspicious David (Jorge Martin) begins to do some snooping, finding the Baron's servant (Mike Brendel) dumping one of the bodies, he tries to destroy the killer tree with an axe, but is confronted with the Baron (Cameron Mitchell), wielding another axe!
The wonderland has become a deadly trap for the tourists with no chance of escape...
Note: - The producers spent $35,000 for the plants made for the picture (they wanted to get a tree that operated automatically with a guy inside it) but it never worked. So the crew had to revert to a 35-year-old system of invisible wires to get the tree "alive". The ending of the film was drastically altered (originally the Baron and his creature were intended to get burnt) because of the SFX team, who weren't able to deliver the original show-down.
- Director Mel Welles (who has a Ph.D. in Psychology and who worked as Director, Writer, Actor, Stuntman, Special Effects Man...) faced the wrath of a man-eating plant like florist Gravis Mushnik in Roger Corman's "Little Shop Of Horrors". Some sources credit him as Ernst R. Von Theumer (with Mel Welles being a pseudonym), but as he explained in the forum of his personal website ( "It (Ernst Von Theumer) is neither my real name nor is it a pseudonym. In Europe, when you package a two or three country co-production, the ministries that control the film industry AND subsidize them with premiums of one sort or another insist, that so many points of the production be indigenous to one of the participating nations. I used the name of the German producer for the ministry documents, and in Italy, Germany and Spain the film, thus called "Island Of The Doomed" , the director's credit was listed as such, however in the rest of the world, it was given the proper credit. I must add that I never anticipated the problems in archival reporting that would arise (no internet then) as many of Von Theumer's legit credits appear in place credited to me and sometimes vice versa."
- Cameron Mitchell was on a health trip at the time of shooting the film, and was eating 26 cloves of raw garlic a day for his health. That made it a little difficult to work in very close proximity with him.

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