Greetings, and welcome to VIEWING THE CLASSICS. Here you'll find capsule reviews of vintage movies from the early days of cinema through the 1970s, with a special emphasis on sci-fi, horror, and mystery movies. Be sure to check out the Pages links, where you can find a Film Index of all my reviews, links to the reviews organized by cast members, directors, and other contributors, and links to my reviews of the films of talented young director Joshua Kennedy.

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Friday, July 26, 2013

Mad Monster Party (1967)

Starring Boris Karloff, Allen Swift, Gale Garnett, Phyllis Diller, Ethel Ennis
Directed by Jules Bass
(actor & director credits courtesy

To commemorate his latest discovery and announce his retirement, Baron Frankenstein holds a convention of the world's famous monsters on his island and also invites his bumbling nephew.

In this stop-motion animated film from Rankin/Bass, the creators of the famed holiday specials like Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer and Frosty The Snowman, Karloff voices the Baron, and Diller capitalizes on her image to play the bride of Frankenstein's monster.  Their character designs and those of the monsters, which include Dracula, The Creature From The Black Lagoon, The Wolf Man, and many others, are absolutely wonderful, but the film's less a spoof of the monsters than a comedy about assembling them all together.  However, in my opinion, it's just not as fun as it should be, with throwaway songs, and only a few jokes that really amuse, despite MAD Magazine's Harvey Kurtzman collaborating on the screenplay.

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