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Day the World Ended / The She-Creature [Import]
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From The Samuel Z. Arkoff Collection, Journey Back To The Day The World Ended (Richard Denning, Lori Nelson. 82 Min.), In Which A Most Unlikely Group Of Seven Survivors From A Nuclear Holocaust Fight Each Other And Also Mutant Animals. Then Hypnotism Is Used To Reincarnate A Prehistoric Woman For The Purpose Of Killing The Hypnotist'S Enemies In The She-Creature (Chester Morris, Marla English. 77 Min.) 1956/B&W/Nr/Fullscreen.
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There are definitely parts in both that are washed out/speckled, but not so much that they're annoying. One of the cool things I appreciate about these Arkoff double features is BOTH FILMS are featured on ONE SIDE of the disc. There's none of that double sided nonsense which ultimately renders one unlucky playing side scuffed over time. Here, the movie art is screened onto the topside of the disc and once in, there's a menu to take you to either film.
For me at least, the main reason to watch these films is the monsters in them. The Paul Blaisdell (sp?) shoestring budget, classic monster creations are a pleasure to see despite not being featured as prominantly as this viewer would like. If you have trouble stomaching old-school cheapie monster suits, then stay far away, especially if you're an unshakable CGI accolyte cuz these rubber suits will make your eyes bleed and send you into seizures. But if you grew up on old FAMOUS MONSTERS issues and model kits, you could probably appreciate the creatures at least. The films:
"DAY THE WORLD ENDED": I'd only seen a full frame of this flick, so it was nice to see it letterboxed or whatever that's called. There's parts of the pic's image (the sides, the top & bottom are the same) I'd never seen before in my old copy. The acting throughout is typical 50's...a little....err..... well....ALOT on the melodramatic end, but hey, if you're watching old school flicks, this shouldn't surprise you. I found the father ...the man whose house all of the survivors gravitate to, to be a little grating through most of his performance....in fact there's a point in the film when he demands his daughter basically marry the Richard Denning character to populate the new world which was not only laughable in that 'ooooooh uh uh, no he didn't' kind of way to almost feeling like nails on a chalkboard it is so painful to watch, despite it trying to play as a heartfelt ....uh....heartfelt....uh......anyway.....
"THE SHE-CREATURE": Man...I love the suit design of this monster. Waiting for her to appear makes watching this mostly stilted movie bearable. I didn't find it as awful as a few people I know....certainly no more awful than other drive in flicks that I get great pleasure suffering through, but it isn't all that great either. The Hypnotist is such an over the top wannabe-all-powerful- villain, he's a pleasure to watch....most of the time. The chick who's under his spell is a 50's hottie, though her innocent victim part got a little grating after a bit, I kept waiting for her to bite her knuckles in typicall 50's fashion. Her 'Hero' was a bit stiff throughout his performance (no pun intended hehe;-) But hey.....remember...it's all about waiting for the monsters.
OVERALL: They're drive-in movies from way back-I love this stuff. My friends sometimes wonder why I bother with them. There's a heavy does of nostalgia involved, but there's also the fact that I can spend 30 bucks at a theater these days and still walk out hating the movie. Here, for less than 15 bucks, I get two films...infinite cigarette and bathroom breaks and no one chopping it up on their cell phones one or two seats over. These fall somewhere between PLAN 9 and HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL in viewability if that tells you anything. For the price, they're definitely worth it. Now when does INVASION OF THE SAUCERMEN come out??????
NOTE: I give this entire package 4 stars for being a double feature and a value at its price. I'd give each film a 3 on their own. Since these are supposed to be reviews of the PRODUCT as well as films, I needed to take that into account. So don't none o' ya'll email me screaming about how awful you thought the films were but bought it because you expected a 4-star feature...lol!!!;-)
"Day The World Ended" is a Roger Corman movie and the reason I bought this release. After a nuclear war, One man has set up a house in the "valley" so that the fallout can't get to him and he and his daughter are set to ride out the end. Well others find their way to this oasis and sure enough the start fighting amongst themselves. To make matters worse someone or something is in the woods around the house and it wants a "date",NOW!!! It's all great fun with Corman once again proving that a little money and a lot of imagination can go a long way. Super Fun
"She Creature" was one that I had not seen before for some reason and even though it's not a Corman movie it has that same American International Films feel too it. After being hypnotized a woman reverts back to the monster she was in a former past life. Nothing great but loads of fun.
In this day of tepid gore soaked remakes these old Drive-In classics shine with their wit,imagination,charm, and style. Well worth a look no matter what your age.
I admit to being overly sentimental about old sci-fi movies, but this one was a notch above many 50's sci-fi films, being smart about what to show and not to reveal too soon, and the ending was pretty good too. The music was even good (but I think partially pirated from another film having stolen just the legal limit from another composer), and the special effects and costumes were also very good.
The sexist marketing that supported this movie (and SHE CREATURE) was an embarrassment, as were almost all marketing efforts for 50's and 60's sci-fi films (see DVD cover), but it worked, didn't it?.
Have lots of fun and enjoy