THE DEVIL’S HAND (1962)
Article #1675 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 10-15-2005
Posting Date: 3-14-2006
Directed by William Hole Jr.
Featuring Linda Christian, Robert Alda, Neil Hamilton
A man is haunted by strange dreams of a beautiful woman, and is surprised to encounter a doll that looks just like her in a doll shop. He is then startled to discover that not only does the owner of the shop claim that he commissioned the doll to be made, but there is also a doll on the premises that looks just like his current fiancee. In unlocking the mystery, he is drawn into an evil cult.
I must admit that this movie opens with an intriguing mystery. Unfortunately, the mystery resolves itself a little too early in the proceedings for my liking, and the movie turns into a devil cult movie with a love triangle subplot that is a little too ordinary. There are some odd touches; the cult is a bizarre cross between witchcraft, voodoo and Satanism (all of which have similar elements but which do tend to have differentiations), and the Russian Roulette style of sacrifice is interesting. However, some of the dialogue is melodramatic and silly, and the cult itself is hard to swallow; I take my hat off to every actor in the movie who can talk about worshiping the great god Gamba without breaking into laughter. The movie also shows how scotch tape can be used to defeat voodoo curses, certainly a useful household hint for certain households. The cast includes the father of actor Alan Alda and Commissioner Gordon from the “Batman” TV series.