"The Phantom Creeps" was Universal's 44th sound-era serial (between "The Oregon Trail" and "The Green Hornet") and was re-issued to theaters in 1949 by Commonwealth Pictures Corporation, a distribution set-up handling primarily Universal re-issues. Commonwealth had no hand at all in the production of this serial (as incorrectly shown on site) as they were a distribution company only. Some sources mistakenly identify them as the serial producer because all of the 1949 re-issue prints (and the 16mm prints sold to television circa 1952) show "Commonwealth Pictures Corp. Presents" above the title.There is a whole lot of difference between "presenting" and "producing", a fact that some sources appear to not know or don't care. The serial is of interest to some collectors as it re-unites Bela Lugosi and Edwin Stanley from 1931's "Dracula", and the crater-discovery of the meteorite fragment by Zorka in the serial is stock footage from Universal's 1936 "The Invisible Ray." The stock footage ... Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
As an avid serial fan, I have to say that this is one of my favorite serials of all time! Why? Many serials tend to be predictable, but this one contains a lot of interesting concepts -- giant robots, invisibility belts, "z-ray guns", "neometers", mechanical "death spiders" and other futuristic gadgets.
Plus, I'm a Bela Lugosi fan, and it is generally considered that he was at his peak in this film. He shows genuine sorrow when his Wife dies in the beginning of the film, and a madness to destroy those he blames for his death.
Many people on the East Coast saw this film on Officer Joe Bolton's TV show (circa 1960) and have never forgotten it.
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