Teenage Zombies (1959)
|See Teenage Girls Thrust Into the Weird Pulsating Cage of Horror!
A Fiendish Experiment Performed with Sadistic Horror!
Attention insomniacs! A new breakthrough cure has been found
to rid you of the sleepless nights you've been suffering through!
It's called...Teenage Zombies. Pick your copy up today and
never suffer through a sleepless night again!
I really do think that this film could be an amazing untapped
cure for insomnia. And while I haven't watched it a second
time, I think the potency of it's sleep-inducing power could
be multiplied tenfold upon repeated viewings. Teenage Zombies
is without a doubt, one of the most boring movies I've ever
The agonizing storyline (I use the term "storyline"
loosely) surrounds a group of teens out for a day of water-skiing
on the lake...or ocean...or some type of body of water.
I was trying so hard to stay awake I can't recall. They
plan for lunch on an island apparently none of them has
ever been on before. Curiosity gets the better of them,
and they wander around. Unluckily for them, they catch sight
of a bunch of men walking single-file, up to who knows what,
and are described by one of the teens as looking "doped
up...or dead or something". At this point the movie's turned
into a really bad Scooby-Doo episode.
Upon opting to run back to the boat and get the heck outta
Dodge, they find that the boat is..."Dum, Dum, Duuuum!"...gone.
Now the audience is treated to five minutes of them quietly
walking the shoreline looking for their boat. Horrible.
To make a long story short (too late!), they run into an
attractive female mad scientist, Dr. Myra, who proceeds
to capture the four of them to use in her diabolical lab
experiments. It seems she's helping two generic foreign
agents from the "East" in developing a gas that mentally
enslaves those exposed to it. There's your zombie connection
if you were wondering. They want to drop the gas on the
United States for unknown reasons. I wonder if it was religious
fanaticism? Who knows, they never give us any reasons behind
all this. Character motivation was noticeably absent.
The rest of the film plods slowly along into a mishmash
of chemical testing, horribly choreographed fight scenes,
a man in a gorilla suit, and other such silliness. It's
around this time that you feel that your time hasn't been
completely wasted. While the characters onscreen are rolling
around on the floor in some of the most drawn-out, ridiculous
fighting you'll ever see, you'll be rolling around too...on
the floor...laughing. And just when you think you've laughed
enough, the guy in the gorilla suit (which I'm pretty sure
is supposed to be a real gorilla) jumps into the fray and
it starts all over. I can only describe it as looking like
a very competitive game of Twister that got way out of hand.
If only the first 50 minutes could have been this amusing.
The teens are finally able to thwart the evil terrorists
and save the day. They would have gotten away with it too,
if it hadn't been for those darned kids! The ending conjures
up even more memories of the 'ole Mystery Machine while
we listen to some military official tell the teens that
they've just saved America from the "largest menace to U.S.
security". Wow...if that's the "largest menace",
then it's an incredible insult to all the other menaces
to U.S. security.
The music isn't worth mentioning, sounds like library stock
that they must have gotten on the cheap. There's no special
effects to speak of, unless you count the gorilla suit.
I'm certain that you've been to Halloween parties and seen
a more realistic gorilla. The acting is quite poor, and
is magnified by a very weak script. Jerry Warren's directing
is bland and monotonous, and the cinematography is very
uninspired. Honestly, I'm thinking hard and I can't come
up with a single redeeming thing about the film. Even the
film transfer itself was terrible. I knew I was watching
a movie over 40 years old and it looked every bit that old,
if not more. From what I hear, there's not a good print
left of the movie. They probably tried to destroy all of
them. I can't say I blame them.
(Out of 5)
|November 19 2002
|July 14 2003
|DEAD KEV'S ADVICE
|A snoozefest to the extreme. Watch it only if you're having trouble getting to sleep.
||ZOMBIE LESSONS LEARNED
|1. Never leave your boat unattended when visiting a strange island you've never been to before.
2. Never let the gorilla out of your sight.
|-"They look doped...or dead or something."
-"Look, what kind of creep joint is this?"
-"If we hadn't walked around so much, we could have
built a raft."
-"I swear Skip, sometimes you remind me of a walking comic book."
|Jerry Warren (Frankenstein Island)
|Jerry Warren [as Jaques Lecotier]
||Dr. Myra, Mad Scientist
||Ivan the Zombie
||Older Foreign Agent
||Younger Foreign Agent
|Governor Films Inc.
Gotham Distribution (DVD)
|COUNTRY OF ORIGIN
|73 mins (B&W)
|Actress Brianne Murphy married director Jerry Warren and became the first woman director of photography at a major studio.
|AROUND THE WEB
|Bob Clark on Jerry Warren's "Petrified World" - The Astounding B Monster
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