Cinema Monolith

Reviews of movies from my giant DVD tower, and more.

X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes

X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes

Cinema Monolith: 4/10 This film is part of the Cinema Monolith collection!
IMDb: 6.7/10
Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide: **½ out of 4

Released on September 18, 1963
Not rated
79 minutes

Directed by Roger Corman

Written by Robert Dillon and Ray Russell

Cast: Ray Milland, Diana Van der Vlis, Harold J. Stone, John Hoyt, Don Rickles, Morris Ankrum, Dick Miller, Lorrie Summers, Leon Alton, George DeNormand, Dick Miller, Cosmo Sardo

I don’t know what happened to actor Ray Milland after 1958, but after vanishing from the silver screen for four years, suddenly he was back in action, only now starring in and directing low-end horror and sci-fi movies; X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes was his second time working with director Roger Corman, after he appeared in his 1962 horror cheapie The Premature Burial.

Here, Milland plays Dr. Xavier, a scientist who really wants to improve his eyesight; he experiments on himself with a test compound that opens up the visible spectrum of his vision, resulting in the ability to see through lab coats, sheets of paper, walls, a man’s tie…you know, the usual. Unfortunately, he keeps pushing it, and soon he’s seeing too much—beyond the capabilities of his mind to comprehend—and he naturally goes mad, before plucking his eyeballs out of their sockets at a religious tent revival, ending the film on quite the chilling note.

With all that, this was still a surprisingly restrained and unexciting horror film, with emphasis more on the cerebral side of things than the laser-eyed mayhem angle you see in the film’s one-sheet poster. If there was a point to it all, I’m not too sure what it was, except maybe that trusting your optometrist to do your eye work may not be such a bad idea, and that the rules of ‘x-ray vision’ will always go haywire in film, as was evident here: Milland could see through this but couldn’t see through that, he could read tiny print from great distances, and so on.

However, he did use his new-found skill to ogle hot women at a dance party, and to cheat at cards in Vegas, but beyond that there didn’t seem to be much more for him, or anyone else, to do. It was strange seeing Don Rickles in a dramatic role, as a carnival barker who took advantage of Milland’s cursed talents, and funny watching him incorporate a few moments of his schtick into his part. Again, we had decent direction from Corman, and some passable optical effects for the time, but most everything else seemed like an opportunity lost.  (4/10)

x-the-man-with-the-x-ray-eyes-photo-face-1

Advertisements

Feel free to comment, you readers of the Monolith!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address and click the button below to become a bona fide Cinema Monolith follower. C'mon, what's the worst that could happen?

Join 143 other followers

Review Totals

Movies Reviewed: 161

From the Monolith: 89

Movies by Decade

1920s – 0
1930s – 4
1940s – 12
1950s – 23
1960s – 30
1970s – 22
1980s – 25
1990s – 5
2000s – 10
2010s – 30

Movies by Genre

Action/Adventure – 28
Comedy – 33
Crime – 9
Documentary – 1
Drama – 17
Horror – 29
Martial Arts – 0
Musical – 1
Mystery/Thriller – 14
Romance – 3
Sci-Fi/Fantasy – 19
Western – 6

Movies by Rating

10 star – 9
9 star – 19
8 star – 24
7 star – 22
6 star – 14
5 star – 15
4 star – 17
3 star – 12
2 star – 15
1 star – 11
0 star – 3

Blogathons I’ve Joined

The Coolest Links

%d bloggers like this: