A wealthy business man discovers he has a brain tumor and seeks medical help. The business man finds a scientist experimenting with transplanting monkey heads on different monkey bodies. ... See full summary »
W. Lee Wilder
It seems pretty likely to me that this film was given the title Manfish to try and hook in the horror audience. Those who have seen the film of course know that the 'Manfish' is in actual fact the name of the boat owned by a couple of treasure hunters. This was initially disappointing to me as I was expecting a schlocky 50's monster movie, however, the film actually turned out to be alright all things considered.
The story in summary is about an unpleasant captain who is forced to join forces with an unpleasant professor in order to locate a horde of buried pirate treasure. This situation becomes a game of cat and mouse that ends very badly.
Bizarrely, this non-horror film is based on two Edgar Allan Poe stories, 'The Gold Bug' and 'The Tell-Tale Heart'. They are surprisingly well integrated into the plot-line all-in-all. In the main the film is a sea adventure but it turns into a tense thriller for the final third. It has some pleasing Jamaican on-location photography too, with some good underwater scenes. Although, it is a pretty cheap film in other regards, with a definite low-budget feel.
Lon Chaney is the top billed act, although he plays second fiddle to John Bromfield as Captain Brannigan and Victor Jory as the Professor. These two are the brawn and the brains, and they fight with each other continually. They were an impressively immoral pair to base the film around, and they were a lot of fun to watch. Chaney is the lumbering simple-minded but good-hearted ship's mate, and I suppose he provides the heart.
Manfish is certainly a minor film. But not bad as these types of films go.
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?