Created three years after At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul, This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse is the second film that revolves around Jose Mojica Marin’s evil alter ego: Coffin Joe. This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse feels like the love-child of the design and storytelling of a classic Universal monster movie, and the lurid content of a classic Hammer Horror production. I, personally, believe that This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse is the definitive film of Mojica’s career and, unlike At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul, it definitely should be considered a horror movie classic alongside films such as Night Of The Living Dead, and The Curse Of Frankenstein.
This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse is a vast improvement when compared to Coffin Joe’s last cinematic adventure. Jose Mojica Marins was able to work with a larger budget on this film, which is evident upon viewing. There are numerous detailed sets, eye-catching special effects, a larger cast of talented actors, and the use of multiple live animals such as spiders and snakes in certain sequences of the film. The editing of This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse is, again, a vast improvement. The film has a greater sense of pacing and suspense overall without the use of ridiculous overlays that distract from the story that is being told; a stark contrast to At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul.
This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse is also well-written; with a defined and interesting story; as well as introducing varied characters that pay homage to classic horror movie tropes. Coffin Joe, as a character, has greatly improved as well: sporting a greater depth than his first incarnation, he is much more identifiable and, at times, easier to empathize with in this film, despite his evil intentions. Mojica, however, still performs like a bad Shakespearean actor, but after watching the original, it’s become an expected trait of the Coffin Joe character, and it really isn’t a turn-off when watching the film, although Mojica has cut down on Coffin Joe’s philosophical ranting; a change I am very happy with.
Mojica even begins to stretch his artistic qualities as a director by introducing surreal sequences where Mojica experiments with color, sound, and mis-en-scene to create utterly mesmerizing cinematic sequences that stand out and remain imprinted on the consciousness even after viewing. These sequences of artistic surrealism would later become a staple of his films being utilized in Awakening Of The Beast, and Hallucinations Of A Deranged Mind.
Whereas I gave At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul a lukewarm reception, I will wholeheartedly recommend This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse. Unfortunately, in 1967, the film never got the recognition that I believe it deserved due to the state of Brazilian cinema at that time period, and Mojica’s reputation as a film-maker not to be taken seriously. So I’m happy that Mojica got the recognition he deserved in the 1990’s because This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse is truly a gem worth watching.