Panther Women (The) AKA Las mujeres panteras (Blu-ray) [Blu-ray]
Blu-ray ALL - America - Powerhouse Films
Review written by and copyright: Rick Curzon (16th April 2024).
The Film

Gothic horror and lucha libre collide in The Panther Women (Las mujeres panteras), which showcases a host of Mexico’s top female stars, including Elizabeth Campbell, Ariadne Welter, and Yolanda Montes aka Tongolele.

The Panther Women are a witch cult who resurrect their leader by sacrificing the descendants of the family which murdered him. As the cult seeks to kill the youngest descendent, they are taken on by fearless luchadoras Loreta Venus (Welter) and the Golden Rubí (Campbell).

Directed by René Cardona (Night of the Bloody Apes), scripted by Alfredo Salazar (The Bat Woman), and produced by Guillermo Calderón (Santo vs. the Riders of Terror), The Panther Women is an action-packed and influential classic of the cine de luchadoras.


Another mad Mexican fusion of wrestling and horror, this one shot in inky monochrome which suits the material very well. Thoroughly enjoyable psychotronic insanity!
The Panther Women was restored in 2K by Permanencia Voluntaria and Cinema Preservation Alliance from the original camera negatives. The film’s mono audio was remastered from the original optical soundtrack.
When compared to the 2021 release which was badly compressed, poorly encoded and presented in the wrong aspect ratio, this new edition from Powerhouse Films in the UK (with simultaneous UK and US releases) is a significant improvement with another fantastic encode and a much healthier bitrate.

Blacks are perfectly rich with plenty of shadow detail and no unintended crush. Contrast allows detail to shine although there is an inherent softness to the image. Grain is very fine and well handled by Fidelity in Motion's encode with no signs at all of ny digital tinkering. As with every monochrome Powerhouse release it has been my pleasure to cover, the gamma is balanced such that there's no colour bias. The Panther Women almost certainly looks better than it ever has inclusive of original theatrical prints. The film isn't the most artistically lensed film of it's era but is a solid, professionally made, slick product and the transfer is top notch ('A-').

1080p24 / AVC MPEG-4 / BD50 / 1.66:1 / 88:06


Spanish LPCM 1.0 (48kHz, 16-bit)
Subtitles: English

Sound is as to be expected from a simple mono track of a film made on a low budget. Range is limited but it's very clear with dialogue taking center stage nicely with only a tiny amount of hiss and very, very minor sibilants occasionally popping up when the sound is cranked up. Subtitles are excellent and - as far as I can tell - comprehensive ('B').


Audio commentary by film historian Keith J. Rainville (2024)

The man behind From Parts Unknown magazine, dedicated to all things Lucha heroes! The track is straightforward, filled with trivia and all aspects of the film with key cast and crew being discussed along with where this film sits within Mexican wrestling films. Presented in lossy English Dolby Digital 2.0 mono (48kHz, 112Kbps)

"Let Them Fight!: The Killer Film on The Panther Woman and the Luchadoras Series" 2024 interview (14:26)
"Cat Fight: Valeria Villegas Lindvall on the Representation of Gender in The Panther Woman" 2024 interview (23:38)

Two analysis of the film from different perspectives, one more cultural (The Killer Film) and one from a gender studies perspective (Lindvall). They offer a nice, rounded contrast when viewed in concert as a retrospective running collectively 38:04. Presented in 1080p24 1.78:1 with lossy English (Lindvall) and Spanish (Killer Film) Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo (48kHz, 112Kbps)

Theatrical Trailer (3:45)

Vintage promo presented in 1080p24 1.37:1 with lossy Spanish Dolby Digital 1.0 (48kHz, 112Kbps)

The Panther Woman Image Gallery: Original Promotional Material (43 images)

Solid HD gallery of publicity images.

80-page liner notes book with a new essay by Iain Robert Smith, archival essays by Janina Möbius and Ricardo Cárdenas Pérez, an archival interview with Guillermo Calderón and full film credits

Comprehensive analysis and history of the film plus ancillary articles that ofer plenty of added value and context.


Not sent for review.


One of three Mexican Lucha Libre films given the deluxe treatment from Powerhouse Films. Image and sound are as good as can be given the 2K restoration and the BD format and the extras are very complimentary brining greater appeciation of this fun film and endearing genre ('B+')

The Film: B- Video: A- Audio: B Extras: B+ Overall: B+


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