The Creepy Warren William Film
Linda McDonnell | Brooklyn, U.S.A | 07/24/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"My never-ending search for Warren William movies eventually led me to "Strange Illusion", one of the last films of his career, in which he plays an honest to God creep! Teenage Jimmy Lydon has been plagued by nightmares since his father's unsolved murder--and the latest one seems to suggest danger surrounding his mother. The next thing you know, mom announces she has a suitor, Warren William. Guess what? Uh huh, that's right. So this is partly David Copperfield/Mr. Murdstone and partly Hamlet/Claudius, as one reviewer made note. An unsavory twist is that Warren William has a fancy for underage girls, which doesn't bode well for Jimmy's girlfriend.Still and all, I liked "Strange Illusion" because it is major camp on top of everything else--others in my family hated it, though. Ergo, I guess it's just one of those movies you have to make up your own mind about."
Ulmer's best beside Detour and Ruthless
Linda McDonnell | 01/29/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Sometimes Mr. Maltin fails with his comments, and to compare this thrilling fantasy movie with Shakespeare's Hamlet is laughable. O.K., there are the usual cheesy sets on PRC's small backlot, but otherwise the dreamy programmer is one of the best in its class. Ulmer again showed his ability to make the best of his extremely low budget. Within this, photography is very good, whereas the music score with its "adaptation" of Schumann's piano concerto gives you the possiblity to cry or laugh. Fine opening, indeed."
Give me a Break!
Margaret Colby-bittner | southern CA USA | 07/16/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)
"My Illusion is shattered. After scores of orders from Amazon, I got a real dud. Looks like this is VCRd from televison (maybe even French television). This is such a poor recording that it is not really viewable. If I could give it less than 1 star it would get it. And yes, it was returned. That was the only good thing about this transaction."
Low budget, high style
Timothy Hulsey | Charlottesville, VA United States | 09/18/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Ulmer's ambitious, cockeyed update of "Hamlet" is one of his best Poverty Row films. Cheesy sets, half-baked scripts, and overwrought acting are to be expected from these ultra low-budget productions, and they're all in abundance here. But because Ulmer brought his screwy artistry to even the seamiest Z-grade projects, this film is shot through with a grimy gutter poetry. _Strange Illusion_ isn't a cult masterpiece like _Detour_, but it's still worth seeing.
For my money, this film's treatment of psychoanalysis, exploitative though it may be, is still superior to Hitchcock's _Spellbound_."