Monster On The Campus (1958)

Rating: **
Review Date: 6/15/15
Cast: Arthur Franz, Joanna Moore

Professor Donald Blake (Arthur Franz) acquires a rare prehistoric fish, but something about it makes creatures who come into contact with it revert to their prehistoric selves. A friendly dog mutates into a wolf, while a dragonfly grows to be two feet long. It has a similar effect on people, as a mysterious sub-humanoid creature goes on a killing rampage on the college campus. Dr. Blake is a person of interest in the murder cases and everyone thinks his theories about primitive Man are crazy. Just when the doctor is on the verge of revealing the campus killer, he realizes the true horror of what's happening. Fearing the worst, he locks himself away in a cabin in the woods in an attempt to verify his hypothesis. Unfortunately, his lovely girlfriend (Joanna Moore) goes out to visit him, and nearly gets herself killed in the process.

It's basically a radioactive spin on the werewolf or Jekyll & Hyde formula. The creature isn't particularly interesting and the transformation sequences are typical of the time period. Franz does a good job as the doomed doctor and Joanna Moore is quite attractive. Her voice is a tad annoying, but her eyes are bright and lively and she has a brilliant smile. Apart from the two leads, the acting is average at best. The pacing is a bit sluggish and the film tends to drag quite a bit. Pretty standard 50's sci-fi horror fare, with an overly dramatic music score.