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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Amazing Transparent Man (1960)


Once should never judge a movie by it's title... but sometimes, the title is a big indicator of the movie's quality...

Safecracker Joey Faust has a mysterious benefactor in Major Paul Kenner when Kenner breaks Faust out of jail.  Soon Faust discovers that the Major has a sinister plan in story for him and the world... one that requires him to become the Amazing Transparent Man...

This is a mad scientist B-movie right to the core.  The premise is silly, the budget low, the acting giggle inducing.  But it's not all bad, though.

I have to give credit to Douglas Kennedy as Joey Faust.  He managed to make the character interesting- and even a little likable.  His face reminded me a bit of Lon Chaney, Jr in "Indestructible Man" (1956).  Marguerite Chapman as Laura Matson was nice to look at, but a little hammy when being hysterical and panicky.  I wasn't much for James Griffith's performance as Major Paul Krenner, however- though I was amused by his fight with the invisible Faust... and the puppy dog look on his face afterwards.  Ivan Triesault was passable as Dr. Peter Ulof- the scientist who invents the invisibility machine.  I liked him, but didn't find him as interesting as Faust or Julian- played by Boyd "Red" Morgan.  Morgan gets a great line in the movie that I loved:

"You know what one of these bullets can do, son?  It'll rip out your spine and roll it up like a ball of string."

There isn't much that can be said about the camera work- it's really simple, and rather plain to be honest.  The special effects used for the turning invisible segments were a little undewhelming as well.  The same can be said for the actual story- which came in at just under an hour.  There isn't even much "amazing transparent man" to be had, actually.  I was rather disappointed in that.

While this is a movie that might be enjoyable as a "Festival des Fromage" night of movies, it's not one that I would pluck off the shelf and re-watch.  I'm putting, "The Amazing Transparent Man," into "The Ugly".

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