10 February, 2007

The Most Dangerous Book?


["LE LIVRE DES NONS MORTS

Le sujet de cette nouvelle est inspiré d'une histoire vraie, celle de Abdul Alazred surnommé 'l'arabe fou', auteur du livre maudit: LE NECRONOMICON. Ce livre contenait des formules et des descriptions de rites magiques pour faire appel à des démons d'une autre dimension. Ces incantations maléfiques étaient perpétuées souvent dans le but d'acquérir la vie éternelle et c'était en appliquant ses propres sortilèges qu'Abdul Alazred était devenu fou."]

{From a single early-2006 post, with no replies, on a French board-"Vladek"}. He seems to be discussing the 15th Century text by A. Alazred, which got him executed according to Jess Franco during the interview supplement on the 2006 BU disc of SUCCUBUS and upon which he based his film NECRONOMICON. It seems to be the same esoteric text which he borrowed from a rare book collection and worked into a treatment... See the David Gregory produced interview.

I'm not asking anyone to translate this until I can ascertain if it's indeed the same text and writer... But it sounds like it, although the author seems unaware of the 1967 film. I'm always intrigued by esoteric texts and grimoires.

Reading is always a potientially dangerous, subversive undertaking in the films of Jess Franco, witness the fate of Madame St. Ange in EUGENIE...HER JOURNEY INTO PERVERSION. Curiously, Phil Hardy's THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF THE HORROR FILM mentions the 15th Century "Abel Alazred" text as a possible basis for Franco's 1973 horror-cannibal-sex epic LA COMTESSE PERVERSE, a kind of version of "The Most Dangerous Game."

OR...is it all a fiction courtesy of H.P. Lovecraft, his precusors and colleagues which is being latched onto? There are certainly more than a few films and books with the title NECRONOMICON. I've been reading Frank Belnap Long's 1975 Lovecraft biography and intend on rereading HPL's oeuvre. My favorite film adaptation of HPL's work is Roger Corman's THE HAUNTED PALACE, from "The Case of Charles Dexter Ward." But that's another blog...

Medieval grimoires, demons, the Inquisition, writers of the arcane, Lovecraft, the Old Ones, it kind of sounds like the word association game in SUCCUBUS. Feedback and comments are always encouraged here, but beware of a potential curse...!

6 comments:

Tim Lucas said...

Translation:

The subject of this new release is inspired by a true story, that of Abdul Alazred (nicknamed "the crazy Arab"), author of the accursed book THE NECRONOMICON. This book contained formulas and descriptions of magic rites for summoning demons from another dimension. These malefic incantations were often repeated with the intention of obtaining eternal life and it was while engaged in such pursuits that Abdul Alazred lost his sanity.

Robert Monell said...

There must be a curse, this is the 5th time I've tried to answer. Thanks for the translation, Tim. I wonder if this is indeed the same person/text Franco mentions as the inspiration for his NECRONOMICON/SUCCUBUS or if this is an invention of HPL...

Chuck Vollers said...

Who woulda thunk there was a Franco / Real Ghostbusters connection?

Douglas A. Waltz said...

[ "THE BOOK OF THE DEAD NONS The subject of this news is inspired by a true story, that of Abdul Alazred called ' Arabic fou', author of the which cursed book: THE NECRONOMICON. This book contained formulas and descriptions of rites magic to call upon demons of another dimension. These malefic incantations were often perpetuated with an aim of acquiring the eternal life and it was by applying its own magic spells that Abdul Alazred had become insane."

Anonymous said...

"Reading is always a potientially dangerous, subversive undertaking in the films of Jess Franco, witness the fate of Madame St. Ange in EUGENIE...HER JOURNEY INTO PERVERSION."

One of my favorite shots in EUGENIE is the first of Maria Rohm curled up with a good book.

Robert Monell said...

Yes, that's the image I was thinking of. Reading Sade is dangerous and subversive...