THE TROLLENBERG TERROR (REVIEW)
Previously titled THE CREEPING EYE
Dir. Quintin Lawrence
Reviewer. Dan Cook
A cheesy yet highly entertaining British sci-fi horror, Quentin Lawrence’s squishy debut feature THE TROLLENBERG TERROR (released in the U.S under the somewhat spoilery title THE CREEPING EYE) is a fairly standard 50’s monster movie elevated by some good performances, a surprisingly high level of gore, some exciting set pieces and a memorable script by Hammer scribe Jimmy Sangster. The film, which is inspired by a 1956 ITV serial, sees a group of strangers including a UN trouble-shooter (Forrest Tucker), a journalist (Laurence Payne) and a troubled telepath (BAFTA nominee Janet Munro) joining forces in a remote Swiss hotel to investigate a series of increasingly gruesome incidents taking place on a nearby mountain - incidents which are being perpetrated by beasties who hide behind radioactive clouds and have a nasty habit of deep-freezing their victims before ripping their heads off like champagne corks.
As is the norm for a low budget B movie, the special effects are enjoyably rubbish and the story (which at times bears startling similarities to Howard Hawk’s THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD) is very much in the mould of the many other creature features, particularly the “giant bug” movies of the time.
However, THE TROLLENBERG TERROR is still well worth a watch thanks to American heartthrob Forrest Tucker’s charismatic central performance, a consistently bleak tone accentuated by composer Stanley Black’s doomy underscoring, an exciting and explosive finale and the aforementioned moments of gruesome violence which include the sights of mutilated bodies, a pretty horrific murder by ice pick and even the image of a recently severed head stuffed into a backpack!