5 user 1 critic

Female Fiends (1958)

The Strange Awakening (original title)
Approved | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | 28 April 1960 (USA)
A man, awakening with no memory, is told he is an heir to millions, but he suspects he is an heir to trouble instead. Based on Hugh Wheeler's novel "Puzzle for Fiends."



(screenplay), (novel) (as Patrick Quentin)

Watch Now

$0.00 with Prime Video


Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A dictatorial film director (Finch) hires an unknown actress (Novak) to play the lead role in a planned movie biography of a late, great Hollywood star.

Director: Robert Aldrich
Stars: Kim Novak, Peter Finch, Ernest Borgnine
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A young couple inherits a debt-ridden old movie theater, appropriately nicknamed "The Flea Pit," and the three eccentric senior citizens who work there.

Director: Basil Dearden
Stars: Virginia McKenna, Bill Travers, Margaret Rutherford
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Charlie Tully and womanising Reggie Peek con two rich Italians out of £500,000 but during their flight out Charlie is arrested for coning an American and a dog. Reggie stores the money in a... See full summary »

Director: Cliff Owen
Stars: Dick Emery, Derren Nesbitt, Ronald Fraser
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A test pilot is injured in a plane crash, following which his fiancee takes him to a psychiatrist. The psychiatrist is unhappily married and has a crush on the fiancee. He attempts to ... See full summary »

Director: Montgomery Tully
Stars: Roland Culver, Patricia Roc, Paul Carpenter
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
Director: Wendy Toye
Stars: Margaret Leighton, John Justin, Roland Culver
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Director: Cliff Owen
Stars: William Sylvester, Mai Zetterling, John Meillon
Tamahine (1963)
Comedy | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A free-spirited young Polynesian girl is sent to live with her uncle in England. The many social and other rules new to her that she encounters there, as well as attention from student body of a local school cause much hilarity.

Director: Philip Leacock
Stars: Nancy Kwan, John Fraser, Dennis Price


Cast overview:
Peter Chance
Carole Mathews ...
Selena Friend
Lisa Gastoni ...
Marny Friend
Nora Swinburne ...
Mrs. Friend
Peter Dyneley ...
Dr. Rene Normand
Joe Robinson ...
Malou Pantera ...
Richard Molinas ...
John Serret ...
Commissaire Sagain
Stanley Maxted ...
Mr. Moffat
Monica Grey ...
Iris Chance
Yvonne Andre ...
Raf De La Torre ...
Mr. Petheridge


Peter Chance, a motorist, is stopped and attacked by a hitchhiker somewhere in the south of France. He is left unconscious by the roadside with no identification. He regains his senses in a strange room but can not recall anything of his past. The house owner, a Mrs. Friend, tells him he is her son and has had an accident, and also that his father has died and he is heir to two million dollars. When the hitchhiker turns up, Chance begins to suspect something is rotten in the south of France. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

heir | france | motorist | death | violence | See All (27) »


Their motive Greed! Their Method Murder!


Crime | Drama | Thriller


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

28 April 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Female Fiends  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Strange? Indeed – I woke up and found the film hadn't finished.
23 November 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

With films like this to his credit, it's surprising the name Montgomery Tully isn't better known. On the evidence of this and several others of his movies (Master Spy and Out of the Fog), Tully deserves to be ranked just marginally higher than the notorious Edward D. Wood. There's one important difference, though. Wood's films were so bad they're hilarious. Tully's are just bad.

Tully specialised in the cheap 'quota quickies' that did so much to damage the reputation of the British film industry, and Strange Awakening serves to illustrate exactly how that damage was done. It's dull, predictable, stagy, wordy, badly scripted and poorly realised in just about every department.

The film begins in France (oops, there goes the budget) where a man (Lex Barker) is saying his farewells to a woman in a preposterous hat (Monica Grey). Driving back from the airfield, Barker gives a lift to a hitchhiker (Richard Molinas) who subsequently attempts to steal his car. A struggle ensues and Barker rolls downhill, bumping his head on a tree and knocking himself out (this needs to be seen to be believed).

When he comes to, Barker's character is suffering from amnesia. He is in a luxurious house, where several women and a doctor (Peter Dyneley) are on hand to fill in the gaps in his missing memory. Barker is, it would appear, missing heir Gordy Friend, a well-known lush whose poet father is a leading figure in a temperance-styled society. Friend senior having recently died, 'Gordy' is required to sign a document and recite a piece of his father's intolerant verse in order to complete the transfer of the Friend estate. Ah, if only it were that simple...

To add further plot detail would be at the risk of 'spoiling' the movie for anyone who hasn't seen it (though it could be argued that Tully did a good enough job of spoiling the film himself, which consists mostly of protracted exposition and tortured plot contrivances). Whatever the merits of Hugh Wheeler's original novel (and I suspect they are few), Strange Awakening does not impress as a movie and would probably have been better left in out-of-print obscurity. Still, it's not likely to be bothering the TV schedules or DVD labels anytime soon, so you're unlikely to find your sleep disturbed by this turkey.

5 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Female Fiends (1958) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: