Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Monster Walks (1932)

The Ghost Walks, so why not the Monster?

Made two years before Ghost, this movie has many of the same horror devices. A rich man dies and his only daughter arrives for the reading of the will. She inherits just about everything, of course. Into the mix are the deceased man's brother, the lawyer, a housekeeper, butler, and the good lady's boyfriend (Rex Lease). Oh, yea, and a black chauffeur to be afraid of everything. Gots to have one of those.

Chauffeur Exodus is played by a very young Willie Best, credited as "Sleep 'n Eat". He would go on to a respectable career as a demeaning racial stereotype, but here he is quite forgettable.

The monster in question is a chimp kept in a cage in the basement. Yea, look at the poster again. Looks like a caged chimp to me too. Apparently Bobo hates the young Ruth. Strange things happen and Doctor Boyfriend becomes Detective Boyfriend. Is the chimp getting out of his cage? Was it "walking"?

Not much more to say about this movie. The old, spooky house has secret passage ways (of course) and there is an almost comic scene when Hunky Dr. Ted reassures Ruth that nothing could possibly happen to her, while a picture frame in the background rotates to reveal a hole. Maybe they weren't all sealed up ages ago after all. No soundtrack to speak of, paper thin plot, grainy film, and poorly edited. Not the worst of the genre but fairly unremarkable. AMRU 2.5. Quite skipable.

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