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Daughter of Dr. Jekyll

USA 1957
produced by
Jack Pollexfen for Film Ventures/Allied Artists
directed by Edgar G. Ulmer
starring John Agar, Gloria Talbott, Arthur Shields, John Dierkes, Molly McCart, Martha Wentworth, Marjorie Stapp, Rita Green, Marel Page
written by Jack Pollexfen, based on characters created by Robert Louis Stevenson

Jekyll and Hyde

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Janet (Gloria Talbott) arrives at the mansion of her guardian Doctor Lomas (Arthur Shields) with her fiancé George (John Agar) for her 21st birthday, when she is to learn about her inheritance. Soon, she is in for two surprises, one good one bad: The good one is that her guardian's mansion is actually hers, and the vast fortune that goes with it. The bad news though is that she is also the daughter of Dr Jekyll - yes, that Dr Jekyll - and she might have inherited the family curse. When Janet goes to sleep that night, she has a horrible dream about killing the maid (Molly McCart), and on the next day, the maid is actually found dead. Now this might still be a coincidence, but where are the traces of blood coming from?

The next few days, this incidence seems to repeat itself, and even though Doc Lomas and George try to convince her it's just her nerves, she's not so sure - after all, the blood on her nightgown is real, right? And the corpses that turn up are real as well.

It's only eventually and by chance that George finds out that Doc Lomas actually drugs and hypnotizes Janet to believe she has killed all those people while he himself turns into some kind of monster (Mr Hyde, most probably) who's actually responsible for the murders. George wants to stop Lomas, but he knocks him out and gets away ... but a bunch of torch- and stake-bearing angry villagers ultimately do the trick and kill Lomas.

 

In case you wondered: Yes, the plot of this film is as silly as I make it sound, and yet the film as such - thanks first and foremost to director Edgar G.Ulmer - is a pretty good piece of horror cinema, atmospheric and suspenseful in all the right places, making maximum use of the minimal sets by including the architecture into its framing, and carried by expert pacing not usually found in low budget horrors of the time.

Recommended, actually.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD