She Demons (1958)

Article #1282 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 9-17-2004
Posting Date: 2-14-2005
Directed by Richard Cunha
Featuring Irish McCalla, Tod Griffin, Victor Sen Yung

Three castaways find themselves stranded on a desert island inhabited by deformed women and Nazis.

By any ordinary set of standards, this movie is a stinker; the script is loaded with cliches and howlingly bad lines of dialogue, it has one of the worst scenes of native dancing I’ve ever seen, and the acting ranges from the somnambulant (Tod Griffin) to the overripe (Rudolph Anders overplays every syllable of dialogue he has) to the one-dimensional (Irish McCalla can play one emotion: disdain). Nonetheless, the reason that Richard Cunha does have a bit of a following is that he knew how to pepper his movies with exploitation elements, and between the ample feminine charms (the native girls), the hideous mutations (also the native girls), and the Nazi brutality (to, among others, the native girls), there’s probably enough here to catch your attention. Still, the scenes that make use of the exploitation elements are broken up by scenes which are just plain talky, and you’d best keep the fast forward button handy. And as for the science elements in the story, I’m still waiting for someone to explain to me how Osler’s experiments with lava qualify as “perpetual motion”.


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