An ancient genie is released from a lamp when thieves ransack an old woman's house. They are killed and the lamp is moved to a museum to be studied. The curator's daughter is soon possessed... See full summary »
Andra St. Ivanyi
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A cheap 50s horror film with John Agar AND Gloria Talbott!
During the 1950s and 60s, John Agar made a ton of lousy horror/sci- fi films. Gloria Talbott also made quite a few as well...and in "The Daughter of Dr. Jekyll" you get to see them both together. The difference is that Talbott managed to make a few really good films in the genre--including the classic "I Married a Monster From Outer Space"--whereas Agar just seemed to have a habit of making nothing but schlock. So which is it going to be here....classic horror or schlock or something in between?
The story is a confusing affair and has the basis of a good story. When Janet Smith (Talbott) arrives at her family manor to claim ownership, she learns a terrible secret--that her father was the infamous Dr. Jekyll. What follows are a series of violent murders and Janet starts to worry that she might have committed them due to some evil gene within her! Her fiancée (Agar) and a nice doctor (Arthur Shields) seem to be the only ones who will defend her, as soon the villagers begin accusing her as well.
The story above doesn't sound bad, does it? And, the mood for the picture is appropriately scary and brooding. However, the writing really was a serious problem as again and again they kept mixing up stories. While Dr. Jekyll created his alter-ego Mr. Hyde, in this movie they keep talking about this story as if Mr. Hyde was a werewolf-vampire!! There's talk about Talbott turning into the creature when the moon is full and how they have to kill her with a stake in the heart!! This has absolutely nothing to do with the Dr. Jekyll story...nothing. I was almost expecting them to toss in some mummy and Frankenstein lore into the film as well!!
Overall, a confusing story to say the least but it IS an entertaining one. My advice is if you see it, turn off your brain and just enjoy it without thinking through the plot too much! A bit of a disappointment for Talbott fans...and an artistic triumph for Agar fans. No, this isn't because Talbott was bad in the film and Agar wasn't...it's just that compared to Agar's other horror films this is practically "Masterpiece Theatre"!
By the way, the familiar Irish character actor Arthur Shields was actually Barry Fitzgerald's brother.
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