Monday, April 5, 2010

Movie Monday - Shanks

Shanks (1974)


[Marcel Marceau; Tsilla Chelton; Philippe Clay; Cindy Eilbacher]

Malcolm Shanks, a lonely deaf mute who lives with his cruel sister and her husband, finds pleasure in making puppets. This skill gets him a job with a professor who is trying to re-animate the dead with electrodes and manipulate them like marionettes. When the professor dies, Shanks decides to use the results of the experiments for revenge.

This is quite the unique film. Long stretches can go by with no dialogue at all, but with a talent like Marceau on screen, these long stretches are just as compelling to watch. The expertise of all the actors makes the physical movements needed for some of the reanimation scenes jarring and unsettling, as they should be.

The plot itself is dark and sad, a peek at a lonely man being taken advantage of by cruel relatives. Soon, the tables are turned in the darkest way imaginable. Truly a different film if ever there was one.

This was William Castle's final directorial picture, and he went out still giving entertaining, intriguing films to the world.

I couldn't find a trailer online, but go to TCM Underground for a clip of the film.


  1. hmmm....have not seen this one, but second time this week i have seen it promoed.

  2. Seems like a take on Frankenstein? Yes, no, maybe?

    Might try to queue this one.