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Saturday, September 4, 2010

The Wasp Woman (1959) - Horror

The Wasp Woman (1959) - Written and directed by the great Roger Corman this is the story of... wait its called "The Wasp Woman" what else do you need to know? Well how she got to be the Wasp Woman, so lets start with the research of Dr. Eric Zinthrop (Michael Marks). Fired from his position doing research for a honey company because instead of getting the valuable royal jelly from the queen bees he was researching the jelly of the more potent queen wasp. There is this hilarious seen where the company man after being disappointed that Zinthrop has not gotten more royal jelly for the company watches as the doc shows him he can research aging with the wasp material. Instead of thinking he can make money off this idea he immediately fires Zinthrop. Just wonderful.
So the good doctor heads to NYC and is soon on the doorstep of failing cosmetics tycoon Janice Starlin (Susan Cabot). Since she has aged out of being the face of her company her empire has started its decline. If only there was a way to recapture her youth. Lucky for her right after the meeting where we learn this she meets with good doctor Zinthrop and immediately start secretly funding his research into wasp royal jelly. This after he shows her the an experiment where when trying to show a Guinea pig getting younger the film maker instead of replacing the original with a younger one replaces it in the next shot with a lab rat. LOL!!! Naturally secret lab work turns on the suspicion radar of several employees including Arthur Cooper (William Roerick), Bill Lane (Anthony Eisley) and her secretary Mary Dennison (Barboura Morris).

Little do the employees no that Janice has insisted on being the first human subject for testing the new serum. The do find out though when she starts appearing at the office looking so much younger. They still do not have all the answers to how it is happening and there are many dinner conversations about how to get information. Unknown to doc Zinthrop Janice wanting quicker results starts taking the shots herself at ever increasing doses. Just when he notices that the cat he treated until it reversed aged into a kitten had reverted to adult, and was vicious to boot, he gets hit by a car. Janice not knowing what happened to hims sends out investigators in a boring montage of guys driving around the city. She ends up taking so much serum that she turns into a woman with a wasp head and hands and starts killing the employees as they sneak about trying to find answers.

Even after finding Zinthrop he has a bad memory from the car hitting him and as we build to the climax, Marry and Bill are in danger from wasp Janice and it is the doctor that helps save them. This movie could be a warning to those with deep internal drives to be wary of the consequences. The Doctor was driven to develop the serum. Janice was driven to be young again and save her company. Arthur Cooper was driven to find out what was going on. Really bad things happened to all of them . More likely it is just a 50s monster flick that is tied together with these forces. Either way this is fun and funny but not terribly good.

Rating (5.1) 5.0 and above are recommended, Zombiegrrlz rating Rent it! (If you can see it for free even better.)

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