Sunday, December 9, 2012

185. DUNGEON OF HARROW (1962)

This ambitious oddity was co-written, produced, edited and directed by Pat Boyette, who subsequently became an artist and writer for numerous Charlton and Warren comics publications (GHOST MANOR, THE MANY GHOSTS OF DR. GRAVES, CREEPY). In many ways, it's the imperfect illustration of a genre film that had everything going for it -- reasonable acting, clever set design, creative lighting and scripting -- everything, that is, except money. The quality of the script and the obvious ingenuity of the director make one wish the production hadn't been so stubborn about going its own way, though perhaps it had to be. Given the castle setting and most of the costumes, this appears to be a period film (the first mistake) in which a pair of male shipwreck survivors are offered the twisted hospitality of Count DeSade, though not all the wardrobe is consistent with the apparent period. It's far more traditionally competent than, say, an Andy Milligan picture; it plays like a rough draft for a Roger Corman movie of its time, or -- perhaps more appropriately -- a lurid, demented horror comic, closer to Eerie Publications in feel than Warren. Though something is unquestionably missing from its makeup, there is something decidedly lovable about the attempt, and I hope a more colorful source element still exists for this than the faded, almost sepia-toned PD copy I saw.

Viewed on DVD-R.  

1 comment:

  1. Alpha Video's version has a decent print, but this remains more of a curiosity than a fully realized project.

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