Film (1958). Trans-Global/Columbia. Directed by Allan Dwan. Written by James Leicester, Phillip Rock, based on a story by Rock, Michael Pate. Cast includes Anthony Caruso, Debra Paget, Ron Randell and Elaine Stewart. 82 minutes, cut to 76 minutes. Black and white.
In this unusual blend of sf and crime movie, a framed gangster (Randell) escapes from Prison and hides out in the desert, where he is caught up in a nuclear test (see Nuclear Energy). He survives but discovers that he is slowly turning to steel. This dubious Superpower enables him to exact revenge on those who framed him – he can absorb bullets – but the process gradually robs him of humanity, which worries the woman who loves him (Stewart) and renders his seduction by his two-timing ex-mistress (Paget) rather difficult. He is eventually destroyed by soldiers wielding flame-throwers. The film is cheaply made and its script banal, but veteran director Dwan imbues it with a certain harsh power. [JB/PN]
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