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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

ISLE OF THE DEAD (1945)

From the legendary Val Lewton unit at RKO, a non-legendary psychological scare pic. Boris Karloff plays a Greek general who self-quarantines himself with a motley group of fatalists and believers when plague comes to an island dedicated entirely to tombs & burial sites. While the disease plays Ten Little Indians with our cast, we wait to see who goes next. And not much else. The last third of the pic gets a good deal of atmosphere & creepy tension going, and it’s always fun to see how economically Lewton gets his effects, but Helmer Mark Robson can do only so much with the basically tinny narrative.

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