HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Other Lamb, The
Every Time I Die
Lynn + Lucy
Topsy-Turvy
Honest Thief
Blood and Money
Rose: A Love Story
Antrum: The Deadliest Film Ever Made
Om Dar-B-Dar
Silencing, The
J.R. 'Bob' Dobbs and the Church of SubGenius
Dick Johnson is Dead
Two/One
Cognition
Legacy of Lies
I Am Woman
Alien Addiction
Dare, The
South Terminal
Little Monsters
Yield to the Night
My Zoe
Young Playthings
End of Summer
Times of Harvey Milk, The
Buddies
Threshold
Perfectly Normal Family, A
Ravage
Honeymoon Phase, The
One Summer
Bird Island
Variety
Devil to Pay, The
Gypsy
Lost in London
Divorce Italian Style
Becky
Salon Kitty
Misbehaviour
   
 
Newest Articles
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
Werewolves are Real: Dog Soldiers on Digital
Rose: A Love Story - Producers April Kelley and Sara Huxley Interview
Phone Phreak: 976-EVIL on Blu-ray
Living the Nightmare: Dementia on Blu-ray
Becky and The Devil to Pay: Ruckus and Lane Skye Interview
Big Top Bloodbath: Circus of Horrors on Blu-ray
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
   
 
  Whip Hand, The The Enemy At Home
Year: 1951
Director: William Cameron Menzies
Stars: Elliott Reid, Carla Balenda, Edgar Barrier, Raymond Burr, Otto Waldis, Michael Steele, Lurene Tuttle, Peter Brocco, Lewis Martin, Frank Darien, Olive Carey
Genre: Thriller, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Matt Corbin (Elliott Reid) is a writer for a national magazine, but is taking a break from his busy lifestyle to indulge his pleasures of fishing in New England. However, it all doesn't go to plan when a thunderstorm erupts and in the process of retreating to his car, Corbin slips and bangs his head on a rock. Slightly dazed, he gets into his car and drives around for the nearest town, but ends up at a large set of gates. Asking the guard for admittance so he can recover, he is refused access. There's something funny going on in these parts...

Although exactly what it is isn't clear for at least the first two thirds, and when it all becomes plain it's difficult to believe to say the least. In many ways, The Whip Hand is more notorious for what happened behind the camera than what happened in front of it, thanks to the meddling of producer Howard Hughes. Like many Americans at the time, Hughes was preoccupied with the threat that Communists could be gaining a foothold in the lives of his fellow countrymen, although there must have been a damn few who could admit to ever meeting one.

To this end, he took a perfectly decent science fiction thriller about Nazis infiltrating the United States and had the film reshot extensively so that the villains were Communists. Not only that, but they were ex-Nazi Communists, because we all know how much the Nazis loved the Reds, don't we? It says a lot about Hughes and his cohorts' paranoia that these two groups were interchangeable in their minds, just two looming dangers to the American way of life.

In fact, ex-Nazis were more likely to join the U.S.A. after the war, the ones who weren't tried for war crimes or escaped that is, as their scientists had knowledge which would come in useful for the West in bettering the East. But back at the plot, the film did manage to build up a certain amount of tension with the strangely potent idea that small town America was a hotbed of subversion, and as long as it keeps its cards close to its chest, it's quite a nicely assembled suspense piece sustained by director William Cameron Menzies' shadowy sets and menacing closeups.

With a script by George Bricker and Frank L. Moss, from Roy Hamilton's story, this could have been a standard B movie of the era were it not for the lunacy that takes over in the last half hour. Before that, Corbin scouts around the smalltown which is mysteriously underpopulated and tries to gain access to the nearby sanatarium which is heavily guarded. Originally, he was supposed to catch sight of Adolf Hitler there, which is a far more acceptable twist than the one we are eventually offered, but The Whip Hand is still a memorably nutty addition to Menzies' run of oddball films. It's a forerunner to the alien invasion movies of its decade with baddies born from propaganda rather than outer space, and on that level intriguing in the pulpy honesty about its fears. Music by Paul Sawtell.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4374 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 is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: