Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

THE CREATURE WALKS AMONG US


THE CREATURE WALKS AMONG US (1956). Director: John Sherwood.

Following Creature from the Black Lagoon and Revenge of the Creature, the third and final Creature film goes in an entirely different direction. The gill man is captured yet again, and brought to a laboratory where for unspecified and inexplicable reasons, it is decided to operate on his face and body to make him more human. Apparently the gill man [he is never referred to as such, if I remember correctly] already has lungs as well as gills, but the gills are removed and he can no longer breath under water. His build somehow becomes more massive and muscular, and his face sort of resembles a fishy Rondo Hatton. When I first saw this movie I thought it had an interesting idea, but now it just seems to strip the character of everything that made him unique. Jeff Morrow as a wealthy, jealous doctor and Rex Reason as a geneticist give quite good performances, as does Gregg Palmer as the sleazy Grant. Leigh Snowden as Morrow's wife is decorative but not much else; she only chalked up 20 credits. Frank Chase, who was the deputy in Attack of the 50 Foot Woman, shows up briefly as a cabin boy/steward.

Verdict: The gill man deserves better. **1/2.

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