Friday, October 03, 2008
31 Days of Halloween - Day 3 Movie 2
"The Reptile" (1966) makes up for the other three lackluster movies I watched so far. I watch this every few years and it's always like slipping on a pair of comfortable slippers. This Hammer production features many of the same sets as "Plague of Zombies" which was filmed at the same time, and stars Ray Barrett, Michael Ripper, Jennifer Daniel, Noel Willman and Jacqueline Pearce.
Unlike other monster movies that give away what the monster looks like on the poster art, even if you know what the Reptile looks like (and it looks great. The make-up was created by Roy Ashton) the movie is still very suspenseful. We may know going in what is behind the strange series of deaths plaguing a small English village, but we still don't know who, or what the Reptile is. There are many other intriguing mysteries related to the deaths as well, and odd characters and their interpersonal behaviors as well as unknown motivations driving the main mysterry forward.
The monster itself is kept off screen for most of the movie, and there are some well done red herrings involving its true identity. Even when you know who the Reptile is, the film remains suspenseful and filled with nice touches all the way to the end. It may not have either Peter Cushing or Christopher Lee, but "The Reptile" is one of Hammer's better movies.