Amazing Transparent Man, The

Tagged: Film

Film (1960). Miller Consolidated Pictures/American International Pictures. Directed by Edgar G Ulmer. Produced by Lester D Guthrie. Written by Jack Lewis. Special effects by Roger George. Cast includes Marguerite Chapman, Gloria Daniel, James Griffith, Douglas Kennedy, Boyd "Red" Morgan and Ivan Treisault. 57 minutes. Black and white.

Insane former US Army Major Paul Krenner (Griffith) has safecracker Joey Faust (Kennedy) broken out of prison with the help of Laura Matson (Chapman), as he wishes to use Faust in the theft of radioactive materials. They are needed for an Invisibility Machine created by Dr Ulof (Treisault), whom Krenner is forcing to work for him by holding his daughter captive. Krenner blackmailing Faust into co-operation since there is a reward for him dead or alive: Faust becomes invisible, and successfully steals the element. He has plans of his own, though, and talks Laura into helping him rob a bank, but the process is unreliable and Faust becomes visible during this robbery. He still escapes, and the two return to the isolated ranch house where the laboratory is hidden. There, after locking Faust in a room and freeing Ulof's daughter Maria (Daniel), Dr Ulof tells Faust that as a result of exposure during the experiments they are both dying of radiation poisoning. Ulof convinces Faust to help thwart Krenner's plans to create an invisible army: Faust slips inside the house and struggles with Krenner, giving Ulof, Maria, and Julian (Morgan), Krenner's former henchman, time to flee the area. The invisibility process, we have been warned, can cause nuclear detonation of the stolen radioactive element. Laura is killed by Krenner; the element duly explodes resulting in a blast which destroys much of the county, but the others are far enough away to be safe. At the conclusion, the US government is interested in Ulof's invisibility machine despite what has happened.

The Amazing Transparent Man is essentially a crime thriller with sf elements, which Ulmer filmed back-to-back with the much better Beyond the Time Barrier (1960). This was Chapman's last film: she retired after its completion. [GSt]

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