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, December 25, 2015

Voodoo Island (1957)

Starring Boris Karloff, Beverly Tyler, Murvyn Vye, Elisha Cook, Rhodes Reason
Directed by Reginald LeBorg
(actor & director credits courtesy

A debunker of superstitions is hired to prove a tropical island safe for a hotel magnate's new property, only to find the island is filled with man-eating plants and voodoo-practicing natives.

This film unfortunately sounds better than it is, as despite the presence of Karloff, a good cast, and a promising premise, the payoff once the film reaches the island is rather lackluster.  Nevertheless, there's still moments to enjoy here, with fine photography, believable special effects, and some genuinely chilling scenes.  Writer Richard Landau has done better and one wonders if his script was censored by budget limitations and the inclusion of a lesbian character.  Still, this is a good bit of diverting fun, although anyone expecting horror from the presence of Karloff will be disappointed.  A young Adam West appears uncredited in an early sequence in the picture.

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