The Curator of Schlock #181 by Jeff Shuster
The Vengeance of She
Yes, revenge is a good thing.
One thing you may notice on this blog is how few comments are left by my massive readership. I know it’s due to the fact that my brilliant commentary intimidates them. Still, Kurt Stefan left a comment on this blog and I responded to it. That’s what you do with comments. You respond to them. Unless it’s a certain someone who has a problem with your review for Star Trek The Motion Picture. That you don’t respond to. That you ignore.
Anyway, Kurt’s comment is as follows, “Ha! You thought you were lost watching this? Wait until you get to the VENGEANCE OF SHE. You’ll be cowering in the coatroom.” For starters, Kurt, it’s not Vengeance of She, it’s The Vengeance of She. Get the title right. And I’ve never cowered in a coatroom…except for that one time I was alone with my GameBoy, but I talked about that enough already. Read last week’s blog for more details. If it seems like I’m stalling, it’s because I am. I have to write 500 minimum words about The Vengeance of She. I don’t want to, but your curator presses on.
The Vengeance of She is a 1968 Hammer production from director Cliff Owen. What else did he direct? I’ve never heard of him. Oh, he directed the screen version of No Sex Please, We’re British and The Bawdy Adventures of Tom Jones. What was that last one? How have I not heard of this masterpiece? Oh, the movie isn’t about Tom Jones, the singer. It was adapted from an eighteenth century novel by Henry Fielding. It does star Joan Collins. That’s a win. Oh, will you look at that. I’m past half the word count requirement. Woohoo!
I suppose it’s time for me to talk about the actual movie since I’ve scurried by the 300 word point. The Vengeance of She is like She if She were missing Ursula Andress, Peter Cushing, and Christopher Lee. Instead, we have Olinka Berova in the titular role. Actually, she plays a woman named Carol who is the reincarnation of Queen Ayesha. The movie starts out with her walking around in a daze near the shores of the French Riviera. She strips down to her underwear and swims out to yacht owned by a middle-aged letch named Harry (George Sewell). He’s on the run from his creditors and is happy to let the young, blonde woman stay aboard.
I kept thinking this was going to turn into the Hammer version of Gilligan’s Island. I was expecting a shipwreck of some kind involving a kooky cast of characters like Harry’s friend, the psychiatrist, Dr. Phillip Smith (Edward Judd). Instead, we learn of a plot by the immortal Kalikrates (John Richardson) to have the reincarnation of his dead lover, Queen Ayesha, walk through the sacred flame and become immortal just like him.
There’s also an evil wizard named Men-Hari (Derek Godfrey) who wants to take over the world or something to that effect. At no point in this movie does Carol or Queen Ayesha take vengeance on anybody so the title is a lie! Thus concludes our Hammer month. Until next time.