Friday, December 11, 2009

Indestructible Man (1956)

Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird, it's a plane. No, it's Indestructible Man!

Enough quality entertainment, time to revert to garbage! Indestructible is something of a retelling of Frankenstein as a 50's detective story. Lon Chaney Jr. is Butcher Benton, one bad dude. He gets the electric chair for his crimes but his cohorts, who turned states evidence against him, get off scot free. Here's the twist: only Benton knows where the 60 Gs are located. Butch takes that information to the grave. Well, almost.

Insert mad scientist. Well, not actually mad. He wants to do cancer research and needs the body of the recently dead, so he steals one. Butch will do. Funny thing, though. His experiments did two things. It brought butch back from the dead, and it transformed him into Indestructible Man!

Butch can no longer talk because the experiments burned out his vocal cords. That's just fine. Monsters can't talk anyhow. His anger and hatred is expressed by poorly edited closeups of his ugly face. So Butch goes about his business of finding and killing his lawyer and accomplices, plus anybody handy. Into the mix are Butch's girlfriend who works at a burlesque house, and detective Dick, hot on his trail.

More like hot on her tail. Detective Dick is clueless to what is going on and how to proceed. But he does know this hot blond should be ready to move on any moment, now.

Indestructible Man looks like a made for TV movie. TV level acting, script, and overall production. A scene would start and the actors appeared to be waiting for the cameras. Nothing too bad but nothing to distinguish it.

This was a Lon Chaney Jr. vehicle. For those who don't know, that's Creighton Chaney, the bastard son of one of the greatest silent film stars. After Lon's death (age 47, lung cancer - cigarettes are harmless, boys and girls!) he changed his name to Lon Jr to boost his career. They looked nothing alike. Jr was five inches taller than dead 'oll dad. Eventually Creighton dropped the Jr altogether hoping people would confuse him with pop.

Come the middle 1950's, Junior's career was winding down. The big man liked the bottle. He would do a lot of television and low budget crap. This is my first Lon Jr. movie, so I will hold off disparaging his career until I've seen more of it. Can't wait.

This movie had no major flaws. It simply was uninspired and unoriginal. It was narrated by Detective Dick doing a Jack Webb impersonation. I'm glad I saw a Lon Jr. movie. I'm not glad it was this one. AMRU 2.5. Watch it here.

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