Thursday, April 30, 2009

Movie Review: Atom Age Vampire (1960)

Atom Age Vampire

Written by Alberto Bevilacqua, Gino De Santis, Anton Giulio Majano, & Piero Monviso
Directed by Anton Giulio Majano

Pierre....Sergio Fantoni
Jeanette....Susanne Loret
Professor Levin....Alberto Lupo
Sacha....Roberto Bertea
Monique....Franca Parisi

After an argument with her boyfriend Pierre, Jeanette—a distraught stripper—wrecks her car, destroying her once-natural beauty. Feeling sorry for herself and on the verge of suicide, she accepts the offer of a shadowy doctor to undergo some radical secret surgery to restore her face. The secret? “Spontaneous reproduction of living cells—the secret of life itself!” (insert maniacal laugh here.)

The procedure is a smashing success—momentarily, at least.

But when a few mysterious deaths occur around the facility, suspicions are stirred, compounded by Pierre’s investigation into Jeannette’s whereabouts. Perhaps the good doctor isn’t nearly as good as he seems, and perhaps Jeannette is more of a prisoner than a patient. And perhaps—just perhaps—it’s only a mediocre horror flick.

Deep down, it’s a combination story of obsession, cautionary tale of science, and an anti-smoking morality play. If you really want to peel away the layers, that is. On the surface, it’s just a fairly boring, awfully chatty drive-in piece with poor dialogue and, for the most part, laughable effects (although the regeneration of Jeannette’s face was pretty impressive, considering.) Worth a watch if you’ve baked yourself stupid at 3:00am on a Sunday morning, you’ve eaten all the brownies, and the Disney Channel has pre-empted Rescue Rangers, but other than that…keep on truckin’.

72 minutes
Black & White
Italian (English dubbed)

"You'll gasp with Horror...a spine-tingling motion picture only the atom age could produce!"

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