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You can't beat the horror of a clandestine couple who've met the taxidermist on the remote isle where a madman hunts humans for sport—unless you add in Johnny, Betty, Jeanne and Pete. Then shucks, it's a clambake on Horror Island, I'll betcha!
"Bloodlust" (1961) is the mega-campy expression of a persistent theme. Forced to become a sniper in an unnamed war, Dr. Albert Balleau turned from a peaceful scholar to an enthusiastic assassin. Now, he keeps his skills sharp by hunting convicts set loose on his island—until his procurer brings him far fresher game to hunt. Many will recognize the lanky Johnny as a youthful Robert Reed, a.k.a. Mr. Mike Brady, and his sidekick (played by Eugene Persson) could be the prototype for Leonard on TV's "The Big Bang Theory". These would-be heroes are paired up with a butt-kicking Betty and the shrinking violet Jeanne.
Richard Connell's short story "The Hounds of Zaroff" (a.k.a. "The Most Dangerous Game") initiated a chain of cinematic interpretations. Most, like "Bloodlust", focus on the horrific idea of a human so devoid of empathy for his own kind that he can hunt people as if they were animals. The short story itself, however, arguably invites a more nuanced contemplation, suggesting (ever so slightly) the human potential for hypocrisy, whereas this UEN SciFi Friday selection just makes you want to chuckle (when you're not too busy saying "Ew!").
Dr. Jack BroughtonDr. Jack Broughton, zooarchaeologist at the University of Utah, uses a colony of dermestid beetles to assist in his work to prepare vertebrate specimens.
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