HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Night Raiders
Samourai, Le
Advent Calendar, The
Champion
Merchant of Four Seasons, The
Love of Jeanne Ney, The
Blonde. Purple
Dirty Ho
Annette
Shepherd
Dying to Divorce
Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn
Trouble with Being Born, The
Last Matinee, The
Strings, The
Free Hand for a Tough Cop
People Just Do Nothing: Big in Japan
Dear Future Children
Accidental Luxuriance of the Translucent Watery Rebus
Swallow
Thin Red Line, The
Petite Maman
Fast & Furious 9
Sundown: The Vampire in Retreat
Sweet Thing
Maelstrom
Father, The
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Night House, The
Father of Flies
80,000 Years Old
Dead & Beautiful
Bull
Censor
Sleep
Freaky
Nightbooks
Whisker Away, A
Wild Indian
Whale Island
   
 
Newest Articles
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
Vestron Double Bill: Dementia 13 and The Wraith
Farewell Dean Stockwell: His Years of Weirdness
Kung Fu Craft: Cinematic Vengeance! on Blu-ray
999 Letsbe Avenue: Gideon's Way on Blu-ray
Hungary for Cartoons: Hungarian Animations on MUBI
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
   
 
  Mind of Mr. Soames, The A Lot Of Growing Up To Do
Year: 1970
Director: Alan Cooke
Stars: Terence Stamp, Robert Vaughn, Nigel Davenport, Christian Roberts, Donal Donnelly, Norman Jones, Dan Jackson, Vickery Turner, Judy Parfitt, Scott Forbes, Joe McPartland, Pamela Moiseiwitsch, Billy Cornelius, Jon Croft, Esmond Webb, Christopher Timothy
Genre: Drama, Thriller, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Mister John Soames (Terence Stamp) has been in a coma since birth, and kept at this British medical institute for the past thirty years, growing to physical maturity but mentally, nothing appears to be going on in his mind. However, the forthright Dr Maitland (Nigel Davenport) has big plans for his patient, and has invited an American surgeon, Dr Bergen (Robert Vaughn) over the Atlantic to perform an operation on Soames that may be able to awaken him from his lifetime slumber. The media are naturally intrigued, and are invited in to record the process, but what will Soames be like if and when he does gain consciousness? How will he be able to cope?

Well, you are more or less ahead of the plot in this variation on the venerable Mary Shelley Frankenstein novel except here the body is already formed and it is the titular mind that must be built and pieced together to create a new life. However, the scientists, especially Maitland, could be regarded as just as misguided as their literary counterpart in light of what happens and how their subject behaves - it's not a spoiler to reveal he does wake up, because you do not hire Stamp for a lead then have him lie around the set with his eyes closed for the duration of the shoot. What this did feature was a pseudo-seriousness that it was actually asking searching questions of society.

Awkward questions, at that, the sort of "has science gone too far?" queries that had been prevalent in science fiction ever since its inception. Undercutting that somewhat was the fact that the premise could not have happened in real life, as even if they did wake up a man who had always been in a coma, there was no way he could have been trained to attain any kind of advancement as we saw here, even if he was somewhat restricted in his mental capacity. It was as much a fable as Charly from a couple of years before this had been; Cliff Robertson had snagged an Oscar for that fanciful, sentimental item, so maybe the production here was hoping for a similar degree of adulation.

No such luck, as it did not set the box office alight and was largely forgotten afterwards, though it did pick up dedicated fans, mostly responding to Stamp's portrayal of a soul who was either pathetic or dangerous, being a grown man with a child's intellect that could be inquisitive or petulant, but had trouble with boundaries. The first half of the film was dedicated to Soames' development, with lots of bits of business with toys and tests until he becomes tired of the whole affair and threatens to return to his coma. A subtle aspect of the scientists' lack of understanding about their patient is that Soames is not being looked after by any women, so he has no mother figure to guide him; for that reason his later interactions with the opposite sex can place us on edge, since we do not know how he will react.

Yes, our "monster" does escape, after clonking one of his guards, so we know he has a capacity for violence, and much of that diversion into thriller territory, even horror territory, can be explained by the producers on this picture being Amicus; while Charly was a sensitive drama with science fiction trappings, this was made by people whose speciality was portmanteau horror flicks, and they obviously could not help themselves. Going against Soames' image of a potential menace was his attire: to have us reminded he essentially held a child's outlook in his noggin, the costume department decked him out in what can best be described as a pink onesie, and not one of those for comfort-obsessed twenty-first century adults, either. That we are supposed to regard Soames as a rampaging baby lent an air of the absurd to the film, though we did get some engagingly bleak views of late sixties-early seventies Britain, resolutely non-swinging, and Stamp somehow did not invite us to laugh as this miserable specimen. Music by Michael Dress.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 869 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: