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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Saturday, March 11, 2017

The Wasp Woman (1959)

Starring Susan Cabot, Fred Eisley, Barboura Morris, William Roerick, Michael Mark
Directed by Roger Corman
(actor & director credits courtesy

The aging executive of a cosmetics company trusts in a scientist's injections of a queen wasp's royal jelly that transform her into a youthful beauty, but they have an unforeseen side effect.

This low-budget monster movie from Roger Corman has a surprisingly clever story by Kinta Zertuche, commenting on the dark side of the quest to recapture youthful looks by women and their cosmetics alike, as well as a fine performance by Cabot in the title role.  Although the monster scenes are too darkly lit and the creature makeup is a bit too minimal, it's an entertaining enough film with an interesting score by Fred Katz, and is one of my favorites among Corman's sci-fi entries.  Michael Mark is memorable as the eccentric scientist, as is William Roerick as Cabot's cynical staff member with an ever present smoking pipe.

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