Fiend Without A Face (1958)

This film is campy 50s Sci-Fi at its greatest. It is billed as having some of the most grotesquely explicit special effects of its time so I was looking forward to maybe some arms or heads being dismembered, or something like that.  Well, I guess I should’ve kept my hopes in check for 1950s campy SF. 

The film was actually pretty good.  The setting is an American military base in Canada that is doing nuclear experiments; there are some suspected and completely unexpected effects from the nuclear power experiments on the surrounding village and that gets the plot rolling.  It was interesting to watch this film because it embodied fear of Russia, fear of the unknown effects of radiation, and of course, the overpowering nature of LOVE.

As far as Russia goes, turns out the purpose of the nuclear experiments was to try to use the nuclear power to power a long-range radar that would scan Russia from the vantage point of Canada. As far as the fear of the unknown effects of radiation goes, these nuclear radar experiments had insanely unexpected results due to unrelated mind experiments that were already being done by a local professor. Turns out the professor inadvertently was able to tap into the surge in nuclear power being given off from the military base, and that caused the fiends to come into being.

The fiends were actually brains with tentacles, and the gory special effects were the brains spurting out blood. Not a lot of gruesome imagery by today’s standards, but nonetheless sweet.

And the icing on the cake was that two people (An American and a Canadian…Oh Ally, my Ally!) fell in love over a sea of mutant brain-fiend corpses!

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