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Category Archives: Movie Reviews 1962

Virginia Leith is Jan in the Pan

From the DVD case: A mad scientist accidentally decapitates his pretty fiancĂ©e in a car accident and then rushes her head to his secret laboratory to keep it alive. Needing a replacement body for his beloved, the doctor visits various strip-clubs and girlie shows in order to pick just the right body for his needs. Meanwhile, the revived head is conspiring with a grunting thing that is locked away in the doctor’s closet, seeking revenge on her boyfriend. (1962, b&w)

Mark says: If you’ve ever bought a compilation horror DVD, you probably already own a copy of The Brain that Wouldn’t Die. It’s one of those films that is included in almost all “classic horror/cult” collections. I own several copies of the movie myself, but the one I most often refer to is produced by Diamond Entertainment and comes as a duel pack with The Amazing Transparent Man. The Brain that Wouldn’t Die was filmed in 13 days during 1959, but was not released until 1962.

As a child, this movie terrified me. The opening sequence where Virginia Leith whispers the words, “Let me die,” inspired genuine chills. I was also horrified by the image of a human head detached from its body, speaking, blinking, and undeniably angry. Add to that a mystery monster in the closet and you have a frightening movie experience for a pre-adolescent boy.

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Reptilicus, 1962

From the DVD case: Exploring the depths of the frozen Arctic tundra, Danish scientists discover the remains of a huge prehistoric monster when their drill comes up dripping with flesh and blood! But scientific study soon turns into prehistoric payback when the terrifying specimen regenerates itself and begins a blood-curdling reptilian rampage. Immune to bombs and impervious to missiles, Reptilicus reigns over a world where only one thing is certain – now that he’s defrosted, civilization is about to be cooked! (1962, color)

Mark says: I can not absolutely declare Reptilicus the worst giant monster flick ever made, as there are some giant creature films I’ve not seen, but it’s hard to imagine that a less convincing beast has ever dis-graced the silver screen. The Giant Claw features an equally terrible “special effect,” but the movie is at least entertaining. Even AIP, a distributing company with less than stellar standards, was reluctant to release this monstrosity.

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Kiss of the Vampire, 1962

From the DVD case: Lost on the way to their honeymoon, a young couple stumbles upon a mysterious family of vampires and their unspeakably evil leader.

A wrong turn leaves Marianne (Jennifer Daniel) and Gerald (Edward De Souza) stranded in a remote Bavarian forest where they have no choice but to accept the hospitality of the hypnotic Dr. Ravna (Noel Willman), distinguished lord of the local castle.

Ravna uses his “children” to lure the newlyweds to his lair, and soon, they are plunged into a nightmare of horror and deception from which there may be no escape. Their only hope is Professor Zimmer (Clifford Evans), who calls upon an ancient ritual in a desperate attempt to destroy the vampires and free Marianne from Ravna’s power. (1962, color)

Mark says: Sometimes referred to as the vampire version of The Lady Vanishes, this is a fine example of a Hammer Film Production. Even without the help of Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, or Director Terence Fisher, this movie proves to be both interesting and entertaining.

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