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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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Undersea Kingdom (1936)

Starring Ray Corrigan, Lois Wilde, Monte Blue, William Farnum, Boothe Howard
Directed by B. Reeves Eason & Joseph Kane
(actor & director credits courtesy

Navy lieutenant "Crash" Corrigan and his friends trace a mysterious force causing earthquakes to the lost city of Atlantis, where a powerful despot is making plans to conquer the world.

Here's an action-packed and fun movie serial from the early years of the Republic Pictures studio, which per Wikipedia was formed from a number of smaller studios including Mascot Pictures, who provided much of the principal crew for Republic's serial unit.  Mascot's serial a year earlier, The Phantom Empire, seems to have inspired this production, which also features a lost civilization, lumbering robots, and plenty of men on horseback.  Although no one would call this a great science fiction opus, it's nonetheless very enjoyable, enlivened by thrilling music, chariot chases, sieges of a fortress, sword fights, and a great deal of derring-do for Corrigan.  Although no one particularly distinguishes themselves in the cast, Lon Chaney, Jr. some years before becoming a horror star, plays the captain of Blue's soldiers.

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