How To Make A Monster (1958)

August 14, 2011

 

American International like Monogram, PRC, Pine – Thomas, and Lippert were strictly ‘B’ Movie companies the difference being AI found their niche appealing to the teenage crowd at the drive in theaters. Robert Harris, primarily a television actor who did a variety of character roles was given top billing in this one somewhat of a rarity. As makeup artist Pete Dumond he was let go in a takeover by new studio heads. The days of monster movies were over. Seeking revenge he puts some sort of spell on two actors Gary Clarke (Wolfman), Gary Conway (Frankenstein), and himself to kill those who got rid of him. It was some sort of special ingredient in the foundation makeup. His mentally challenged assistant, Rivero played by Paul Brinegar, another veteran of television, at first helps him and then is disposed of too when Dumont feels he can’t trust him anymore.  By now he is crazed and it all comes to an exciting conclusion. Much of it takes place on the American International studio set which adds a little different spin to the yarn. There are pretty girls and a rock and roll song “You Gotta Have Ee Ooo,” an Elvis Presley type number written by veteran science fiction writer Paul Dunlap, who also added a creepy score. As far as a low budget film is concerned it’s a good one with a different spin for a horror movie. Producer Herman Cohen makes an appearance as the projectionist a nice touch. Worth a watch (**1/2)

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