The Twilight People (1972)

This is one of those films where the trailer promises classic exploitation:  monsters, sadism, and that requisite hint of sex.

The reality is that the trailer includes almost everything that falls under those headings.

This one was one of the many cheap horrors Filipino schlockmeister Eddie Romero made during the Seventies.  It’s basically a combination of The Island of Doctor Moreau with “The Most Dangerous Game.”  A famous explorer and adventurer in the Richard Branson mode is kidnapped and taken to the Island lair of a sinister doctor who is busily experimenting on people to turn them into beast men.

For their own good, of course.

Naturally, his daughter and assistant falls for the hero, and they escape together with all the beast people, while the Doctor’s hired big game hunter/enforcer tries to catch them.  Which is what he’s been hoping for during the first part of the film…

Well, “drooling over” might be closer.

Despite all the goofy monsters and makeup, this one tends to be a touch slow for this sort of film.  One might also note that some of the details are decidedly absurd — like the trust the girl puts in the cat woman, after it tried to kill her.  Or that she seems equally unperturbed by what the ape man tries to do to her.  Or that Bat Man.

The most noteworthy thing about this one is the presence of Blaxsploitation actress Pam Grier as the catwoman, although, to be fair, it was before she was a “big” star.  And then, of course, there is the very Sixties-ish score, all surf guitar and blaring horns, that sounds more like it came from some beach movie.

This one has its moments.  But on the whole, it is probably best left to those who are into this sort of thing.

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