Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Hideous Sun Demon|
Actors: Robert Clarke, Patricia Manning, Nan Peterson, Patrick Whyte, Fred La Porta
Directors: Robert Clarke, Tom Boutross
Genres: Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Cult Movies
Screen star Robert Clarke, legendary science fiction leading man of the 1950s, produced, directed and starred in this Atomic Age chiller about a scientist that turns into a hideous prehistoric creature when exposed to the ... more »
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One of the all-time "greats."
Doghouse King | Omaha, NE United States | 09/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I could go on ad infinitum about all the things that are wrong with this film, those that make it so earnestly campy or inept or histrionic or unintentionally funny or even surreal. I could tell you it's 'so bad it's good.' But that wouldn't really fill you in, as such a statement can be interpreted many ways by many different people.There are also a surprising number of things the film manages to do competently. Listing those to someone contemplating purchasing this dvd might even be counterproductive. So I will refrain.The simplest, most telling review I can write is this:The star, Robert Clarke, while wearing the rubber Sun Demon costume during filming in the hot Southern California sun, sweated profusely. The sweat ran down his torso and to his trousers. This gives the appearance during the latter stages of this movie that the Hideous Sun Demon was unable to control his bladder.If the above sounds funny to you, you will like the movie.See also: Village of the Giants; Astounding She-Monster; Teenagers From Outer Space; Attack of the 50-Foot Woman (1958)"
Don't forget the sunblock!
(4 out of 5 stars)
"THE HIDEOUS SUN DEMON is a few steps above most drive-in horror features of its genre. Well, maybe just one step. Shot on a minimal budget, director and star Robert Clarke creates some brilliantly directed moments. There is also a pleasing eerie atmospehre, even though its quite obvious many of the nighttime sequences were shot during the day! The actual Sun Demon's raison d'etre is rather clumsily explained (the actors "tell" the story of how Clarke became the sun demon than actually showing it, another budget constraint). Many of the cheap elements of bad movies are here: cheap costumes, particularly bad actresses that look like big names (check out the Marilyn Monroe lounge singer and the Vivien Leigh look alike girlfriend!), minimal sets and local actors. There is a lot to recommend about this movie and it won't disappoint most B-movie fans. As for the actual DVD itself...The film print source at times suffers from somre wear and tear. In some areas, the picture is pelted with scratched both vertical and horizontal. Other than that, the movie has some nice contrasts and the soundtrack is particularly impressive. It has a wonderfully designed menu and a scratchy preview. All in all, worth every penny!"
Half film noir, half "b-movie" monster, a real winner!
Mark Shanks | Portland, OR | 04/10/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Well, now, from the cover of this one, you'd think that this was lower down on the evolutionary scale than plankton. Actually, it falls somewhere between the whole-heartedly "serious" sci-fi flicks of the 50s (like "Them!" and "The Day the Earth Stood Still") and the **real** bottom-of-the-barrel stuff like "The Amazing Colossal Man" and "Beast From the Haunted Cave". True, true, you do have to have a taste for cheese to really enjoy these things, and this one doesn't disappoint. Our hero is quite the booze-hound, but that didn't keep his friend from recommending him for his current job (somewhat unclear - apparently it involves unloading isotope bars off of a toy railroad...! ) One day, he shows up to work with a hangover (his loyal assistant insists it was "just a headache"!), and the next thing he knows - he's been exposed to "5 or 6 minutes" of radiation. That's enough - remember, this was made back in the days when anyone capable of using the words "isotope" and "radiation" in the same sentence was definitely some kind of Poindexter.The interesting thing about this film (besides the rubber-suited lizard man) is that it doesn't seem to matter to anyone that, hey!, we have this guy who turns into a Hideous Sun Demon, and they don't keep him around for observation. "Just stay out of the sun." Okie-dokie! Good news is that he's still very much the booze-hound, and therefore we get to spend time following him around, looking for bars at night - looks downright noirish for a while, and by all means stick around for the stacked blonde singing the "Love Song From Hideous Sun Demon", aka "Strange Pursuit" (what a title! What a song! What kind of piano is that woman playing, anyway? )Still, our director and star did his best with this one - some of the scenes are really well composed (there's one scene near the beginning that looks as though Ansel Adams could have shot it) and it has a far more polished feel to it than SO many of these movies. (Ugh - if you haven't sat through a Francis Coleman movie, you have no right to pass judgement on THIS one!) The DVD transfer is completely acceptable (what, you're waiting for the widescreen edition? I don't think so....) even if it doesn't really have any extras (other than the liner notes, which put the whole thing into perspective). There's some film scratchiness but mostly it's pretty decent B&W - not too washed out, not too contrasty. It even has the usually-deleted "rat scene" (you'll know what I'm referring to as soon as you see it).All in all - I recommend it to ANY fans of the genre. Not as well known as a lot of the familiar turkeys, better than most of them if not overly-ambitious or special in any way. A prime slice of the genre, best enjoyed with a rainy Saturday afternoon or a couple of friends for riffing purposes. Have fun!"
Serviceable Sci-Fi Shlocker...
Mark Savary | Seattle, WA | 01/22/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
""The Hideous Sun Demon" is one of those quintessential shoestring sci-fi schlockers that is so bad it's good. When a scientist is exposed to new radioactive isotope (as is so often the case in these movies), he then becomes allergic to sunlight; the side effect being that he devolves into a lizard-man and kills people. Full of booze and paranoia, our hero takes up with a saloon singer while his sweetheart is left to fret. Silly science and lots of fiction (and skimpy budget), prevents this particular cautionary tale against "tampering with the Unknown" from being in a league with other radiation-based monster movies. There are some great scenes (mostly with the monster lying in wait to attack), but be ready for some over-the-top acting (and just plain bad acting by some inexperienced cast members!), and some el-cheapo effects work. The filmmakers do make up for a lack of budget with some creativity and imagination, but what really saves this little film is the excellent use of location shooting. Real-world venues take center stage (especially during the climactic oil tank battle hundreds of feet high up), with startling footage of oil pumps, tank farms, and girders that easily make us overlook any weaknesses in acting or effects. And to be honest, the rubber suit and mask are pretty effective. You'll have fun with this one, as long as you aren't expecting a slick big-budgeter. While far from perfect, you can tell that everyone involved really made an effort to make the movie as fun and as exciting as they could. The DVD comes with liner notes and the trailer, and the print is in pretty good shape."