It’s Hammer Time Presents: The Stranglers of Bombay (1959, Terence Fisher)

Although not a horror movie this is still an exciting and thrilling adventure film that clearly had some influence on Steven Spielberg’s and George Lucas’ Temple of Doom (1985). The Stranglers of Bombay deals with a murderous Indian cult known as the religious cult of Kalias, which was run by men known as Thuggees. They terrorized the country until the British finally defeated it, thus reflecting how the English believed that in conquering other countries they were bring order to “Uncivilized” cultures. Fisher doesn’t exactly reflect that in this film however, as the colonial and political subtexts are either pushed aside or not deemed important, while the film’s main purpose is to be a movie thrill ride that entertains the audience instead. Which is too bad, although in the 1950s a movie questioning British colonialism at a time when the British were losing their empire probably would not have been too popular with audiences.

One of my favorite parts is when the young captain, named Henry Lewis (played elegantly by Guy Rolfe) has to be saved from a cobra by a brave mongoose in an exciting and very real fight to the death. The cult leader really lacks any type of personality and therefore isn’t really menacing although he is not actually the main villain. The movie has crisp, clear action sequences and is very straightforward which is not completely a bad thing. While not featuring the main stars that populated most of Hammer Studios films I liked that The Stranglers of Bombay has a cast that I was not familiar with, as it makes things more unpredictable. This is one Hammer Studios film that should have been rewarded with a sequel, as the future exploits of Lewis would have been also fun to watch onscreen. Oh well.

It’s Hammer Time

I couldn’t resist, as cheesy as that title is. Anyways I set out last year to watch as many Hammer Studios movies as I could, and although I’m really behind schedule I’ve still viewed some since last Horrorfest. Links to reviews will be posted here, and I would like to note that I have already seen some Hammer Studios movies prior. I would like to dedicate this entire project to the studio itself, and I’m glad that they are following me on Twitter, which is cool. Also since Netflix sends me whatever DVD they have ready on hand some of these viewings will be out of order.
The List, So Far:

1. X: The Unknown (1956, Leslie Norman), Netflix-
2. The Hound of the Baskervilles (1959, Terence Fisher), Netflix-
3. The Plague of the Zombies (1966, John Gilling), Netflix-
4. Frankenstein Created Woman (1967, Terrence Fisher), Netflix-
5. The Abominable Snowman (1957, Val Guest), Netflix-
6. Night Creatures (1962, Peter Graham Scott), Netflix-
7. The Evil of Frankenstein (1964, Freddie Francis), Netflix-
8. The Revenge of Frankenstein (1958, Terence Fisher), Netflix-
9. The Stranglers of Bombay (1959, Terence Fisher)-
10. The Terror of the Tongs (1961, Anthony Bushnell)-
11. The Man Who Could Cheat Death (1959, Terence Fisher)-
12. The Phantom of the Opera (1962, Terence Fisher)
13. Paranoiac (1963, Freddie Francis)
14. The Snorkel (1958, Guy Green)
15. The Maniac (1963, Michael Carreras)
16. The Curse of The Mummy’s Tomb (1964, Michael Carreras)
17. The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960, Terence Fisher)
18. The Reptile (1966, John Gilling)
19. The Witches (1966, Cyril Frankel)
20. The Mummy’s Shroud (1967, John Gilling)
21. Dracula Has Risen From The Grave (1968, Freddie Francis)
22. Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (1969, Terence Fisher)
23. Taste The Blood of Dracula (1970, Peter Sasdy)
24. Blood From The Mummy’s Tomb (1971, Seth Holt)
25. Dracula A.D. 1972 (1972, Alan Gibson)
26. The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires (1974, Roy Ward Baker)
27. Frankenstein and the Monster From Hell (1974, Terence Fisher)
28. The Satanic Rites of Dracula (1974, Alan Gibson)
Previously Viewed:

1. The Curse of Frankenstein (1957, Terence Fisher)
2. The Horror of Dracula (1958, Terence Fisher)
3. The Mummy (1959, Terence Fisher)
4. The Brides of Dracula (1960, Terence Fisher)
5. The Gorgon (1964, Terence Fisher)
6. The Devil Rides Out (1968, Terence Fisher)
7. Captain Kronos: Vampire Hunter (1974, Brian Clemens)

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