January 29, 2014
Movie Night: Scared to Death.
Review #534: Scared to Death.
Bela Lugosi (Prof. Leonide), George Zucco (Dr. Joseph Van Ee), Nat Pendleton (Bill Raymond), Molly Lamont (Laura Van Ee / Laurette La Valle), Joyce Compton (Jane Cornell), Gladys Blake (Lilybeth), Roland Varno (Ward Van Ee), and Douglas Fowley (Terry Lee) Directed by Christy Cabanne.
The movie claims to be filmed in "natural color", and while it may seem utterly ridiculous to market especially in the title card, the movie doesn't look that bad, though even if it was in black in white, this would still be a mediocre film. The movie has a premise that could either be seen as creative or entirely useless. And what's the premise? The character that was scared to death narrates (I put that one loosely, given that all is speaking brief lines while just lying on the table) over the film, complete with really silly screamy music that occurs every time the corpse narrates (The narration lasting about 30 seconds)...and after it ends, which makes me wonder why didn't they just have narration over the film itself, and not these stupid interruptions that aren't long enough to be called interruptions. Lugosi is hamming up to the max, and hey, he's not the villain here, though he does have a short sidekick, which is really bizarre because it doesn't really add anything to this shoe string plot. The actors look like they don't care, and the film's plot is so ludicrous that you'll be begging for it to end by the half way mark. It's a strange, but ultimately useless film that shows its age, and it's lack of scares. It actually would work better as a comedy, but even that sounds too generous. For the next film on Bela Lugosi Week, we'll be dwelling into...the 1950's.
Overall, I give it 4 out of 10 stars.