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Roger Corman Trash-o-rama

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Posted 24th April 2009 at 08:09 PM by Sam@Cult Labs

The Wasp Woman

The Woman's Driving Passion is to be... Queen of Beauty

She has the head and hands of a wasp but the body of a beautiful woman she is...Wasp Women.

Another production line cheapy from Roger Corman before he hit critical pay-dirt with his series of Edgar Allen Poe films, this isn't high art but for tacky movie aficionados it'll hit all the right buttons.

The head of a successful cosmetics brand sees her sales drop as she begins to age. Obviously she's no longer a good advertisement for her own products! Luckily for her a scientist has found a way to extract healing enzymes from queen wasp royal jelly, reversing our leading ladies aging process.

But the treatment is taking too long and, displeased with the lacklustre results, she breaks into the scientist's lab and doses herself with extra injections. Clearly, this is a dreadful error as, following a brief period in which she loses 20 years from her age, she soon transforms into a hideous, murderous wasp woman (or lady in a cheap mask...delete as applicable).

Like most of Corman's early work, tongues are firmly shoved into cheeks for this movie. It's a goofy concoction, which will have modern viewers smirking at both the intentional gags and the unintended humour that's found in many of these drive-in B pictures.

The Creature From The Haunted Sea

A Guy... A Gal... And a Boat-Load of Loot

A very early directorial entry for B-movie mogul Roger Corman, Creature from The Haunted Sea earns the distinction of featuring possibly the worst movie monster costume ever committed to (Or should that be against?) celluloid. Only the moth eaten ape suit with a divers helmet shoved on top in Robot Monster comes close to the sheer awfulness of the Creature in this fine slice of 50s crapola.

Cuba in crisis provides the then topical location for this low budget opus, as two corrupt generals flee the revolution with the countries treasure, aided by some American mobsters. Unfortunately for the crooked military men and their gangster buddies, one of the hoods is an undercover agent whose trying to bring down the operation form the inside, he intends to lure them out to sea then murder them all with the intention of blaming the crimes on a sea monster.

Yeah...good plan, almost foolproof I'd say.

Of course, what we know and they don't is that there's a real sea beast, a terrifying, in a rubbish suit. Creature from the Haunted Sea is more of a would be hard boiled thriller (complete with Marlowe-style narration from the undercover mole) than a typical 50s creature feature in which the monster itself rarely shows up, a blessing perhaps given it's ragged appearance. This is a fun time waster if you're a drive-in fan but it's home movie ambience and general cheapness may irritate some viewers.
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