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After the final day of a vampire play, the lead actor (Duke Moore)
stays behind to reminisce ... but soon all the noises the empty theatre
still makes freak him out quite a bit - even if he has rational
explanations for each and every one of those. But as creeped out as he
might be, he also feels somehow forced to give the whole place a good
look-over to search for ... he doesn't know what, he only knows that he
will know when he finds it. That said, while investigating the place, his
senses play more and more tricks on him, culminating in the scene where he
thinks a vampire dummy he has shared the stage with every day comes to
life. Finally, in the last room of the vast place, the actor finds what he
has been looking for, a black coffin - and he knows he'll climb in never
to leave it again ...
Ed Wood has made some pretty wild movies
in his lifetime, but this one's more of a mood-piece, a deliberately slow
moving piece devoid of jump scares and relying solely on atmosphere.
Originally the film was intended for Bela Lugosi, but that actor died
prior to the shoot. Also this was supposed to be the pilot of a show
called Portraits in Terror, but the series simply never took
off - and due to its deliberate slow pace and emphasis on atmosphere, it
just might not have found its audience.
Now taken by its own merits, Final
Curtain is certainly a film that shows Ed Wood did at least know
something about filmmaking (something many dispute) and was more than just
an underachiever full of wild ideas ... but all's not great with Final
Curtain, and the main point of critique is its rather tedious
voice-over (done by Dudley Manlove) that invariably describes exactly what
we see on the screen in the first place, more often than not deriving it
of its full effect. Plus, the voice-over, while Edgar Allan Poe-like in
its best moments, by and large betrays Wood's bread-and-butter job as a
hack writer who's paid by the word rather than according to quality, as
the whole thing's incredibly wordy and repetitive.
Still worth watching
for Ed Wood fans at least, as it's definitely one of his better (though
not funnier) movies.