powered by AFI
Deep in the jungles a mad scientist is using the natives¿ voodoo for his experiments to create an indestructible being to serve his will. When a party of gold seekers stumbles upon his village, the scientist realizes that Marilyn the expedition¿s evil leader is the perfect subject for his work.
In the jungle, American scientist Dr. Roland Gerard observes a voodoo ceremony in which witch doctor Chaka uses a voodoo doll to put the young native girl Zaranda into a trance. Gerard then injects Zaranda with a serum that transforms her into a monster, assuring Chaka that their magic will work together. Disregarding Chaka's warnings, Gerard takes Zaranda, now human again to his laboratory. Gerard's wife Susan, who is confined to their house, is frightened of her husband and tries to leave, but the native guard, Gandor, stops her. Meanwhile, in Marcel's Bar, American Marilyn Blanchard and her boyfriend, Rick Brady, discuss drawings of voodoo symbols. They then talk with Harry West to discuss Harry's forthcoming trip up river with Rick. Harry does not want Marilyn along and warns Rick to be careful as she killed her former boyfriend. Marilyn and Rick later search Harry's room while Marcel has arranged for him to be distracted at the bar. When Harry interrupts them, Marilyn kills him, then continues searching. Soon Ted Bronson, a guide Harry had hired but never met, comes to the bar looking for him. Marilyn identifies herself as Harry's boss and tells him that she will be accompanying them into voodoo country. Ted is suspicious and warns of the dangers, but agrees to be their guide. Soon Marilyn, Ted and Rick, who is posing as Harry, travel through the jungle looking for the symbols he and Marilyn found on sketches and on a voodoo doll in Harry's room. Meanwhile, at Gerard's house, when Susan hears a woman's screams emanating from his laboratory, she sneaks down to investigate. Gerard orders her to leave, then later confronts her, saying their marriage has been a mistake and that he is creating a "new being" he plans to take back to America. When she pleads to be allowed to leave, he threatens to kill her. Returning to the lab, Gerard injects Zaranda with the serum to return her to her monstrous form. Using telepathy, Gerard orders her to destroy a nearby village and kill everyone. Although she destroys a hut, she cannot kill and is transformed back into her human self. The next day, Chaka tells Gerard his people are angry that he tried to make Zaranda kill, then adds that they are worried about some white men in the area. When Gerard offers to have Zaranda kill them, Chaka says that will not happen because Zaranda does not have the nature to be a killer. Later, Gerard forces Susan to watch Zaranda's transformation into the monster. Susan screams in horror and calls Gerard crazy, causing him to become enraged and slap her. She then flees to her room and blocks the door. At the encampment, Marilyn reveals to Ted that some tribes use gold for voodoo, then she kisses him and offers to split the treasure. He rejects her advances and warns that he will only take her as far as Banteleya. When Ted's back is turned, she grabs his gun and orders him to come with her and Rick. Back at Gerard's, Bobo, a kind servant, gives Susan a rifle and tells her about the white people who are nearby. She wants to go to them, but he suggests carrying a note from her to them. As soon as he leaves, Gandor, who has overheard their conversation, kills Bobo by throwing a spear into his back. At the encampment, Marilyn tells Rick to search the trail for native symbols that match those on the sketches. While Rick is searching, Gerard takes Zaranda into the jungle and telepathically orders her to kill the sleeping Ted and Marilyn, but as soon as she sees them, she reverts to her human form. Realizing that he cannot change Zaranda's nature, Gerard tells her to return to her village. Moments later, Rick sees Zaranda and kills her, then takes the voodoo doll she is carrying back to Marilyn, who recognizes its markings. Next morning, as Chaka and Gerard stand over Zaranda's lifeless body, Chaka tells Gerard that his people know the white man murdered her and want revenge, but Gerard tells him that the white man must kill the one responsible. When they find Rick, Ted and Marilyn, Gerard tells them that one of them must kill the murderer. Marilyn then coldly shoots Rick. With the natives now placated, Marilyn, who recognizes symbols on Chaka's clothing, asks Gerard if she and Ted may stay at his home. Once there, Gerard tells her and Ted that his wife is mentally ill, then takes Marilyn to his laboratory where he convinces her that he can help her get gold from the natives by convincing them to make her a priestess. Later, Ted is awakened when Susan leaves her room. He is initially skeptical of her claims about Gerard's laboratory, but later, when he sees it for himself, he knows she is telling the truth. He then tells Susan that he is going to Banteleya for help and wants her to stay safe until he returns. Gandor quickly captures Ted then brings him back. Meanwhile, at a voodoo ceremony, Marilyn thinks she is being made a priestess but is turned into a monster. At the end of the ceremony, Gerard telepathically tells her to return the next night, then she changes back to her normal self. The next night, Ted informs Susan that he will again attempt to escape so that Gandor will follow him, thus enabling her to get away. They arrange to meet on the trail to Banteleya. When she expresses concern for his life, Ted says that he is certain that Gerard wants him alive for that night's ceremony. Later, Gerard injects Marilyn with the serum and she becomes a monster. Susan sees this and screams that Gerard is insane, then faints. On the trail, when Gandor catches up with Ted, Ted kills him with a knife he has taken from the house, then goes to the meeting place to look for Susan. When he hears her screams, he goes back to the village, where Susan is being prepared as a human sacrifice. Ted is then captured and tied up next to her. Gerard is shocked to learn that the villagers are also planning to sacrifice him. As Ted loosens his binds, Gerard sends a telepathic message to Marilyn, in her monstrous form, to kill Chaka by forcing him into a scalding pit. In the ensuing melee, Ted and Susan escape, and Gerard takes the monster to his laboratory. Seeing a golden vessel, the monster grabs at it, but it is only clay. Gerard tells her that only Chaka had gold and he took it with him into the pit. The monster then kills Gerard, turns back into Marilyn and goes to the pit. Seeing Chaka's gold statue on the edge of the pit, Marilyn falls in while trying to reach it. Some time later, at Marcel's, Ted and Susan reveal that Marilyn and Rick have been killed. Marcel is skeptical, saying he thinks that Marilyn may still be alive. At that moment, Marilyn, in her monster form, rises from the pit and grabs the golden statue.
Cast & Crew
|MPAA Ratings:||Premiere Info:||San Francisco opening: 14 Feb 1957|
|Release Date:||1957||Production Date:||
|Color/B&W:||Black and White||Distributions Co:||American International Pictures|
|Sound:||Mono||Production Co:||Carmel Productions|
Leonard Maltin Ratings & Review
LEONARD MALTIN MOVIE RATING
LEONARD MALTIN MOVIE REVIEW:
User Ratings & Review
This title has not been reviewed. Be the FIRST to write a review by CLICKING HERE >
User Ratings & Review