And it played with other poverty-row chillers, as one ad showing it with George Zucco's "The Black Raven." It was also a featured film on old-time spook shows; note its presence in Dr. Zomb's Black Mask Mysteries, and a Midnite Voodoo Party show. Of course it played with comedy shorts; one shows an Our Gang short offering, another a Three Stooges short. And a trip to see "The Ape Man" included a serial chapters. One was "Daredevils of the West." Another was "Adventures of Smiling Jack."
Of such bizarre plots were
Monogram cheapies of the 1940s created. It's a lot of fun to watch, even if the
production values are predictably low. Lugosi, as usual, acts far above the
product he's pitching, and he manages to make the audience feel sympathy for
his plight. His ferocious temper tantrums are effective. He nearly strangles
his sister in one scene. Urecal, by the way, is great as the slightly creepy
sister. In an Los Angeles Times review (the paper actually liked the film) the
reviewer suggested Urecal be given her own horror film to star in. So far as I
know, it never happened, although she was also very good in the Lugosi vehicle
The Corpse Vanishes. Currie and Ford as the wisecracking journalists have
strong chemistry. B movie veteran actor McDonald is also an asset to the film.
In a bit part is Earnest Morrison, better known as Sunshine Sammy Morrison of
The East Side Kids.