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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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Mesa Of Lost Women (1953)

Starring Jackie Coogan, Allan Nixon, Richard Travis, Mary Hill, Robert Knapp
Directed by Ron Ormond & Herbert Tevos
(actor & director credits courtesy

A scientist experimenting with glands in insects and humans succeeds in creating giant monster spiders and indestructible women, and uses them to capture more subjects for his experiments.

A crazy offbeat mess of a movie, the picture's certainly different but with many ludicrous elements including a bizarre dance performance, a man inexplicably driven insane who quotes scriptures while threatening people with a gun, obnoxious narration by actor Lyle Talbot, and a relentlessly monotonous jangly guitar/piano score.  Ironically the composer of the score, Hoyt Curtin, would probably go on to the greatest success, writing cartoon themes for the Hanna-Barbera animation studio.  Per IMDB, the film was assembled from a movie called Tarantula made by Tevos that was never released but later purchased and combined with new scenes by Ormond, which probably explains the meandering story.  The result is something less than a cohesive film, but you'll certainly never forget it.

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