The Mutations (1974 UK) a.k.a. Freakmaker

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The Mutations (1974 UK) a.k.a. Freakmaker

Post  BoG on Sat Mar 06, 2010 11:17 pm

Update of the famous Tod Browning horror film Freaks (1932), transplanted to modern seventies London, adding in the mad scientist bit by Donald Pleasence, here channeling the Dr. Moreau train of thought. He's interested in creating human-plant hybrids.  Tom Baker plays his henchman, an Elephant Man-type freak who is biding his time for the moment that the mad doctor will make him look normal. Baker is hostile to the other freaks in the story, not wanting to be a part of the freakshow.  Some of the characters are played by real-life carnival showstoppers. Julie Ege plays the pretty girl  (guess who Baker is after).

The film also features the last performance of Michael Dunn (Dr. Loveless on Wild Wild West), who died the previous year. Also co-stars Brad Harris, who started in Italian muscleman fantasies and the Kommisar X James Bond knock-offs.  Director Jack Cardiff began as a well-respected cinematographer and later directed several Rod Taylor films, notably Dark of the Sun (68).  This is probably one of his lesser efforts but he manages to instill some unusual tension into the story. BoG's Score: 6 out of 10

Mutated Trivia: Baker became the latest Dr. Who right after working on this film.
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