And you thought I'd worn myself out with the whole 31 days of horror thing?
We with no-one wanting to hire me at the moment and given the choice between slowly drinking myself into oblivion or watching some films I've decided to mix both together and see what happens....
Island of Terror (AKA Night of the Silicates/The Night the Silicates Came/The Night the Creatures Came/The Creepers. 1966)
Dir: Terence Fisher.
Cast: Edward Judd, Peter Cushing, Carole Gray, Eddie Byrne, Sam Kydd, Niall MacGinnis, James Caffrey, Liam Gaffney, Roger Heathcote, Keith Bell, Shay Gorman and Peter Forbes-Robertson.
|John, I've just found one of my horses dead. At least, I think it's my horse. It's all soft and flabby.|
Unfortunately rather than produce it in easy to swallow pill form (or even a nice orangey syrup) he appears to have stitched two giant warty testicles together and stuck a hoover pipe into the middle of it.
Oh and given it a taste for bones.
Is it just me that thinks this experiment may go slightly awry?
No time to think about it tho' for no sooner has he flicked the bollock enlarging switch than his lab explodes in a dazzling cartoon explosion leaving him and his scientist pals dead.
And the warty walnuts free to roam the island....
|Radiation room? or dodgy porn stash?|
Off home after a heavy nights drinking and Pot Noodle session with 'the boys', duffle-coated local farmer and part-time bin man Ian Bellows (Eastenders Gaffney) finds himself caught short on the way home and decides, as you do, to relieve himself against some handy polystyrene rocks.
No sooner has he unsheathed his mighty manhood than the silence is broken by his horrific screams.
And what sounds like someone farting in the bath.
His lovely (OK I'll be honest harsh) wife Morag surprised at not being pawed awake at three in the morning, finding her nightie round by her neck and the bed sick free worriedly contacts local copper (and town chiropodist) John Harris (Brit teevee and movie stalwart Kydd) at the local constabulary in the vain hope that her hubbie has fallen asleep there or at the very least been arrested for cow violation.
Unfortunately Harris hasn't seen him since they left the pub but offers to go out and look for him, if only to get the babydoll nightied, horse thighed harridan off his doorstep.
I'm not saying she's scary looking but you can actually see the milk in the jug on Harris' table turn when he opens the door.
Wandering aimlessly thru' the brightly lit studio backlot (sorry, I mean darkened woods) he soon comes across (leaving an unsightly streaky pattern) Bellows' lifeless (and boneless) rubbery corpse propped up against the polystyrene rocks like a big fleshy trifle.
|"What we have here is the severest case of mooth shite-in known to man".|
Terrified (and a wee bit aroused by the sight of the poor fella's gaping and somewhat inviting mouth), Harris swiftly (well as swiftly as a half cut, short arsed Oirishman can) runs to fetch the islands top Doc and resident posh bloke Dr. Reginald Landers (Star Wars' General Willard himself Byrne).
But despite his university education and fine line in tailored overcoats, Dr. Landers is fucked if he can determine why the dead man is completely without bones so decides to travel to the mainland to seek the help of severe cheeked pathologist and horror legend Dr. Brian Stanley (Cushing, all praise to him).
Like Landers tho', Stanley is totally at a loss at to what could have possibly caused such injuries, so the pair head round to the groovy penthouse apartment of the suavely sophisticated Dr. David West (Judd star of everything from First Men in the Moon to Coronation Street), the worlds leading authority on bones, bone diseases and boning in general.
And boning appears to be what's on his mind seeing as he's currently attempting to get into the (very tiny yet tastefully lacy) undies of the voluptuously hipped, wealthy jet-setter Ms. Toni Merrill (Gray from The Young Ones with Cliff Richard who, to our American readers is the true king of rock 'n' roll).
|Gray: Sexier than Jesus.|
Banging on his door just as West is about to start banging Toni, our middle-aged medics waste no time in explaining their predicament to West, even tho' there's a lady present.
Intrigued by the problem and knowing full well that he can't perform in front of an audience, West agrees to accompany them to the island and Toni, up for a wee bit of orgiastic pikey sex and a chance to undermine feminism in all it's forms offers the use of her dad's private helicopter in order to get back to the island (and the plot) that wee bit quicker.
Only thing is that he needs it back by three so he can go to Waitrose for his monthly food shop, effectively leaving the fantastic foursome stranded on the island till the bin men arrived the following Thursday.
On arrival their first stop (after getting their inoculations against foot and mouth and general Oirishness) is Phillips' secluded castle laboratory where they find the poor scientist and his colleagues all dead eyed and floppy.
Just like your dad when he used to sneak into your room after the pub.
Deciding that whatever caused all the deaths must have come from the lab, West, Stanley and Landers (Ms. Merrill has the most important job, which is to sit in the car and keep the seats warm) gather up all of Phillips' belongings (including his ladyboy porn stash, fags and notes) and head back to the hotel to 'study' them and, over a few pints of Guinness catch up on the plot so far before discovering that Phillips had inadvertently created a new lifeform by accidentally splicing a silicon atom to a pair of giants gonads.
|"In mah mooooooooth!"|
Meanwhile PC Harris, thinking that the boffins are still at the castle arrives there to report on a boneless horse that's been found behind the youth centre.
Intrigued by a locked door with a sign that reads 'Killer testicles keep out!' he heads inside only to be attacked and killed by a huge, rubbery tentacle.
In his mouth.
Back at the hotel, it's discovered that these creatures, dubbed Silicates by West and Stanley (Ms. Merrill wanted to name them Testiclons, bless), kill their victims by injecting a bone-dissolving enzyme into their bodies and sucking the resulting goo thru' their arses.
Not only are the Silicates the most pant wettingly scary creature ever to appear on film but are also bloody hard to kill as Landers discovers when he tries unsuccessfully to kill one with an axe only to have it retaliate by forcing a tentacle up his arse.
The poor man screams for help as the rest of the cast look on with expressions of mild apathy.
And in Stanley's case a wee hint of jealousy.
With one of their number down and the Silicates multiplying like rabbits, West and Stanley head over to the house of local big man (and the islands unofficial king) Roger Campbell (Zeus himself MacGinnis) in the hope of recruiting the islanders to repel the massive man-sack menace.
After convincing him that the creatures are of English origin - and with him being a typical Paddy - Campbell jumps at the chance of a fight and quickly phones his loyal assistant (and owner of the local newsagent) Peter Argyle (former actor and current alcoholic drink Caffrey) to round up the townsfolk and arm them with anything that comes to hand.
Which, being Irish means bullets, petrol bombs, exploding pigs and dynamite.
God bless them!
|"Help mah boab!"|
But not before splitting into two and doubling their destructive force.
With the battle quickly becoming a lost cause and with nowhere to turn the fate of the island looks bleak, until that is West and Stanley hear reports of a Silicate found dead on the beach after eating a stray dog that had inadvertently consumed a sandwich containing a rare isotope called Strontium-90.
Could this be the key to Petrie's salvation?
With time running out and the Silicate threat growing, Stanley and West must venture back to Phillips' laboratory in the hope of finding enough isotope to destroy the Silicates once and for all....
|A testicle carrying a designer handbag yesterday.|
Back in the swinging sixties when Britain actually had a film industry and companies like Hammer Films, Amicus and Tigon kept the locals on the edges of their collective seats with a constant stream of horror classics but from those heady bygone days there's one company that lies forgotten and dejected, even tho' they released one of the most terrifying films ever made.
That company was Planet Film Productions and the film was that forgotten classic of science gone wrong that was, is and always shall be Island of Terror.
Unless you live abroad that is where it's known as the slightly less gruesome Night of the Silicates.
God knows how much the budget was but most of it seems to have been blow on winter coats for the actors, which amazingly helps to show who's in charge of who in the cast; ordinary islanders wear donkey jacket style attire whereas the more important community members wear duffle coats, mainlanders are bedecked in Crombie's whilst Roger Campbell (being the big man) has a dufflecoat with toggles and a sweater modeled from what looks like stringy cottage cheese.
Design genius I'm sure you'll agree.
Then there's the almost Lynchian direction and scenes of unnerving bizarreness on screen.
Examples include the fact that every time a car doors slams it does so to the exact timing of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, the fact that local copper Harris, in a sign of almost Wicker Man-esque Lord Summerisle adoration of Dr. Landers, dutifully follows the physician around whenever he's onscreen, helping him into his coat, bowing graciously and even following him around with his trilby like a dutiful footman.
And taking of headware, the mighty Peter Cushing adds a subtle touch to the oncoming danger, donning a variety of more and more darker hats (and matching shirts) as the movie progresses.
|Insert slimy tentacle and/or cock here. Please.|
The same goes for director of Terrence Fisher’s standing.
I've no idea what incriminating photographs Planet's head had of the pair but I for one would love to see them.
Ripe for re-release and begging to be remade (but on the same budget obviously) Island of Terror is a remarkable experience that will alter the way you look at your testicles for years to come.
And there aren't many films you can say that about.