Sunday, October 08, 2006
31 Days of Halloween - Day 8 Movie
I have not seen "The Alligator People" (1959) since I was a kid, and all my thoughts about it between now and then center on that brief clip that is shown on any documentary about cheesy movies, where Beverly Garland screams at the appearance of an alligator headed man, who is about as convincing as one of my kids running around in a plastic mask they bought on a visit to the zoo.
Yes, this alligator man was really cheap looking. Actually, the mask part wasn't half bad. Unfortunately the torso and arms part of the costume looked like a lumpy turtleneck, including sleeve lines at the wrists, and bunched up horribly any time the stuntman inside moved. Maybe if they'd given him a tail?
Fortunately, the rest of the movie was very competently handled. The cast take their roles seriously, particularly Beverly Garland (whose performance, I think ranks right up there with Gloria Talbott in "I Married a Monster From Outer Space." [for more of my thoughts on this film see Monsters From The Vault #21]) as a woman searching for the secret behind why her husband suddenly left her on their wedding night. The answer involves radical medical treatments gone terribly awry. The whole feel, and pretty much the structure of "The Alligator People" is very much like that of "The Fly," so if you liked that movie, you'll probably enjoy this one.