Saturday, January 24, 2015

Movie review - "The House of 1,000 Dolls" (1967) *

Mark McGee in his history of AIP films says this was the sleaziest movie ever made by that company which got my hopes up - as did the brilliant story in that book about the topic matter being so racy they told the Spanish authorities they were making a film about Abraham Lincoln and had an actor dressed as Lincoln on set all the time just in case. However it's just dull - at least, in this version (star Vincent Price alluded to a porno version being shot on the days he wasn't on set).

The story isn't bad - a magician (Price) and his accomplice (Martha Hyer) kidnap women for the "white slavery racket"; the partner of one such woman goes looking for them.

There are some bright moments - the opening sequence, some whipping and cat fights among the girls, attractive women - but not enough of them. Price is professional but is part too small; George Nader is okay as the investigating hero, though bland; Martha Hyer is a non-entity. There are too many scenes where nothing happens and it lacks suspense or even just plain good old fashioned exploitiveness.

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