Paul, a young man whose father was once lieutenant Governor of California before his untimely death, has a strange, recurring dream in which his mother falls in love with a dangerous man (...
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Horace Vendig shows himself to the world as a rich philanthropist. In fact, the history of his rise from his unhappy broken home shows this to be far from the case. After being taken in by ... See full summary »
Paul, a young man whose father was once lieutenant Governor of California before his untimely death, has a strange, recurring dream in which his mother falls in love with a dangerous man (Brett Curtis), a dream which also contains the image of his father's death in an automobile accident under mysterious circumstances. Through the help of his friend, a psychiatrist, Paul realizes that his dream is coming true, and that his mother is falling under Curtis's influence. Curtis, in fact, is a homicidal maniac who lives as an out-patient at the sanitarium of the unscrupulous Dr. Muhlbach. When Curtis makes an attempt to marry Paul's mother, Paul intervenes, and after a series of events discovers the truth behind his dreams.Written by
Wheeler Winston Dixon
Draws on the plot of William Shakespeare's Hamlet. See more »
I'm Paul Cartwright, my father was Judge Albert Cartwright, once lieutenant governor of the state, he was killed two years ago in a mysterious accident. We were not only father and son, but friends. The shock of his violent death still haunts my mind, my nights are troubled by strange dreams.
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For a PRC film Strange Illusion is a top drawer item. It's on a PRC shoe string budget to be sure, but Edgar Ullmer is a director who works good with low budgets and in this case some offbeat casting.
James Lydon who most people will know as the radio and film Henry Aldrich is far from the goofy juvenile persona of that role. He's a rather serious student who is deeply concerned about Warren William who has been paying court to his mother Sally Eilers. Lydon's father was killed six months earlier, among other things he was the former Lieutenant Governor of California. His father was also a criminologist who interested himself in the case of a psychopathic killer who is believed dead, but Lydon thinks William's the guy.
What's really creepy in this film is that William in fact has been a patient at a sanitarium under the care of psychiatrist Charles Arnt. No mystery here, we learn early on that Arnt has William working for him. Psychiatrists intimidate people because they are students of the mind and know what makes people tick. Having one with a killer at his beck and call is a frightening concept unto itself. And William has his own agenda.
The lucky break for Lydon is that he also has a psychiatrist at his beck and call, his uncle on his mother's side Regis Toomey.
Strange Illusion is a film that will scare you far more than some blood and gore things because it explores things we don't like to think about. And that other worldly ending is a truly unique experience. I can't say any more about it.
This is one you have to see for yourself.
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