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The Mutations

Overview

The Freakmaker is a creepy horror film about a mad scientist who abducts college students for the subjects he needs in his attempts to crossbreed plants with humans. His failures are turned over to a dwarf who runs a circus freakshow. This film is also known by the title The Mutations.
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Overview

The Freakmaker is a creepy horror film about a mad scientist who abducts college students for the subjects he needs in his attempts to crossbreed plants with humans. His failures are turned over to a dwarf who runs a circus freakshow. This film is also known by the title The Mutations.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Fred Beldin
The Mutations (aka The Freakmaker) mixes mad-scientist boilerplate with secondhand ideas from Tod Browning's dark fable Freaks, coming nowhere near the disturbing tone of that infamous 1932 thriller but producing satisfying junk horror nonetheless. As the obsessed Dr. Nolter, Donald Pleasance is noncommittal, giving the bare minimum to what begins as a central role but gradually diminishes as the story progresses; still, it's fun to watch him feed live bunnies to enormous carnivorous plants, and his fake accent is amusing. Tom Baker (later to take a turn as Doctor Who) steals the film as the scientist's deformed henchman, a self-loathing acromegaly victim twisted by bitterness and loneliness who lashes out at his fellow freaks. He and dwarf sidekick Michael Dunn are the only real actors on hand in The Mutations; however, Baker's makeup job is unconvincing and thus distracting, particularly when compared to the genuine human oddities that director Jack Cardiff employs. These authentic sideshow performers (including a bearded lady, a human pincushion, and "the pretzel boy") are shown on-stage presenting their carnival acts and figure in a number of scenes directly inspired by (or stolen from) Freaks, including a "one of us" party and a menacing late-night army of spurned circus freaks at the conclusion. The horrible final fruit of the mad doctor's research is a fully ridiculous half-man/half-Venus flytrap creation that absolutely crushes any chance of The Mutations being taken seriously. The time-lapse photography of budding plants used in the opening credits is eerier by far than the wretched rubber costume forced on poor Scott Antony. The Mutations was the decidedly silly finale to Cardiff's directorial career (which included the acclaimed Sons and Lovers and the only movie to be filmed in "Smell-o-Vision," Scent of Mystery), but he continued to ply his trade as an in-demand cinematographer, earning an honorary Academy Award in 2001 for his achievements in true classics such as The Red Shoes and The African Queen.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/18/2012
  • UPC: 661799488389
  • Original Release: 1974
  • Source: Desert Island Films
  • Time: 1:32:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 50,224

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Richard Davies Doctor
Eithne Dunne Nurse
Fran Fullenwider Fat Lady
Joan Scott Landlady
Donald Pleasence Dr. Nolter
Olga Anthony Bridget
Lisa Collings Prostitute
Tom Baker Lynch
Brad Harris Brian
Julie Ege Hedi
Michael Dunn Burns
Scott Antony Tony
Jill Haworth Lauren
Technical Credits
Jack Cardiff Director
Paul Beeson Cinematographer
J. Ronald Getty Executive Producer
Herbert Smith Art Director
Basil Kirchin Score Composer
Edward Mann Screenwriter
Robert D. Weinbach Producer, Screenwriter
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