THE CREEPING UNKNOWN (aka The Quatermass Xperiment/1955. Director: Val Guest.
The Quatermass Xperiment first saw life as a six-part TV serial in 1953. Professor Quatermass (Reginald Tate) has helped send a trio of men into outer space for the first time. However, when the rocket returns, only one astronaut, Victor Carroon (Duncan Lamont), is inside. Quatermass and associates try to find out what happened to the missing men as well as what's happening to Carroon's own physiology as he undergoes frightening changes. Carroon's wife, Judith (Isabel Dean of Man Bait) has started a relationship with colleague Gordon Briscoe (John Glen), but she remains with her husband during his illness. Victor eventually metamorphoses into a horrible creature that contains the minds of the missing men and terrorizes London. The Quatermass Xperiment is taut, suspenseful and well-acted. Only two parts of the serial remain and are available on youtube, but the other four parts have been cobbled together expertly using production stills, music and background sounds, and written synopses -- these, too, are available on youtube.
|Reginald Tate as Quatermass with Isabel Dean|
Verdict: Creepy imaginative stuff for its day. Quatermass Experiment: ***. Creeping Unknown: ***.