Bride of the Gorilla
“How jungle itself took the law into it’s own hands”
The thing I learned watching this movie? As you travel in the jungle be prepared to meet a snake every ten feet or so, and all the snakes you meet will be twins.
Bride of the Gorilla was released in 1951 by Jack Broder Productions (Bela Lugosi Meets the Brooklyn Gorilla, Run for the Hills) and starred Barbara Payton (Four Sided Triangle, Run for the Hills), Lon Chaney Jr. (Face of the Screaming Werewolf, Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors), and Raymond Burr (Godzilla King of the Monsters, Tarzan and the She Devil). The film was directed by Curt Siodmak ( Earth vs. the Flying Saucers, The Creature with the Atom Brain) who if you don’t know directed a ton of sci/fi horror movies back in dark ages. A young Woody Strode also has a small role as a jungle cop, which is an awesome bonus.
You might think with a cast like that you would be in store for extreme terror, but. .. That is not the case in this film. Bride is more of a love story with a side helping of horror, a little murder mixed in, and some freaky Voodoo spells cast by an old woman, much like Minerva in “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil”.
The story goes like this. Deep in the heart of Africa a plantation foreman (Burr) murders the old plantation owner (Cavanagh) by pushing him down on a venomous snake ( I told you about the snakes!) to get his beautiful wife (Payton). An old African witch lady sees the murder and casts a wicked voodoo spell on the murderer. Every night after that the murderer will become a gorilla and rampage through the jungle killing a lot of stuff. The police chief (Chaney Jr.) knows in his heart who the murderer is but just can’t find the evidence needed to arrest them.
The movie is pretty good and you can probably see it on TCM sometime. It would be a good movie to watch on a rainy day with a bowl of buttery popcorn and a pitcher of green Koolaid like you did the first time you watched it forty years ago.