The Deathhead Virgin
1973 Diane McBaine
Teaser Storyline for The Deathhead Virgin
Somewhere in the Sulu Sea, Philippine fishermen discover a drifting salvage boat, mysteriously deserted. Boarding the empty vessel they find a cargo net dragging from the stern-and pull it up. To their horror, it contains the ravaged remains of two human skeletons.
Janis Cutter (DIANE McBAIN) arrives in Manila and is met by Mr. Kapunan (VIC DIAZ) the Philippine Consul. They drive to a small cemetery where a funeral service commences for her late husband, Frank Cutter (LARRY WARD); and his partner Larry Alden (JOCK GAYNOR)-the two bodies in the net. Under Janis's questioning, Kapunan relates a macabre tale of horror and the occult:
One day while diving in the Moro Gulf, Cutter discovered an old Spanish wreck containing coins and large Sulu pearls. Inside the wreck he came upon the bolted door to the ship's brig, and pried it open. There, chained to the floor, was a female skeleton with long black hair floating eerily in the water.
Cutter gathered up more coins
and pearls, removed a strange amulet from the skeleton's neck-and on a whim, released her from the irons.
Back on the surface Cutter showed his find to Sebastian (MANNY OJ EDA) the mate on the boat Sebastian a superstitious native, thought it might be part of a treasure fleet destroyed a hundred years ago by a typhoon.
When Cutter returned to the wreck, he found the skeleton had disappeared' He charted the position and ~ contacted Alden in Manila-to do some research on the old legend. Alden discovered that it could indeed be true!
In 1851 the Spanish destroyed the Moros at the battle of Job-only to have the returning treasure fleet sunk by a typhoon in the Sulu Sea. Legend also had it that the Spanish took as a hostage, Laila (SORAYA) the last Virgin Princess of the Moros-placed her in chains, and ravaged her.
A few of her followers, a fanatical cult called the Sak el Bar, have been waiting for a hundred years for her to return-exact vengeance, and return them to power.
Alden flew south to join Cutter, but something was terribly wrong! Cutter was mentally deranged, and physically was deteriorating rapidly. Sebastian claimed Laila had taken human form, and had possessed Cutter to do some evil bidding.
Quasar (KIM RAMOS) the Chief of Police suspected what was happening, and informed Alden of a bloody ritual that was being carried out . . . several young maidens had been brutally murdered, and then scalped!
Finally convinced, Alden searched for Cutter-and found him-completely mad!
After a chase through the jungle, Aldeb trapped him on the beach, only to watch Cutter charge blindly into the sea and disappear beneath the surface.
Alden, in diving gear, followed-but when he finally found the wreck, he discovered Cutter locked in Laila's chains, a Moro spear through his heart.
While trying to bring Cutter's body to the surface, Alden was savagely attacked by Laila-and after an underwater struggle, managed to lock her back in her chains.
On the surface however, Laila's followers jumped Sebastian and threw him overboard, making off with the boat. Alden obviously was trapped in the cargo net he had been placing Cutter's body in. Both bodies towed behind the boat, and were found there, mutilated by sharks . .
The funeral over, Kapunan takes Janis back to the airport to catch her plane back home. The story seems ended-however, Janis, in a disguise, doubles back from Hong Kong and has a rendezvous in Zamboanga with Alden-who we discover is not dead at all! Part of a clever scheme to collect on insurance policies, Alden made it appear that it was his body in the net with Cutter ...