Atom Age Vampire  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Atom Age Vampire (Template:Lang-it) is a 1963 black-and-white Italian horror/science fiction film directed by Anton Giulio Majano and starring Alberto Lupo.

Contents

Plot

When a singer (Susanne Loret) is horribly disfigured in a car accident, a scientist (Alberto Lupo) develops a treatment which can restore her beauty by injecting her with a special serum. While performing the procedure, however, he falls in love with her. As the treatment begins to fail, he determines to save her appearance, regardless of how many women he must kill for her sake.

Despite the implication of its American title, the film does not feature an actual vampire. The titular Seddok is actually the brilliant but deranged scientist Dr. Levin, mutated by a chemical formula created using radiation. Dr. Levin studied the effects of radiation on living tissue in post-Hiroshima Japan, and created an imperfect and teratogenic serum, "Derma 25", which he later refined into the miraculous healing agent "Derma 28" which he uses to treat the heroine. When his supply of Derma 28 runs out, he realizes he must kill to obtain more, and injects himself with Derma 25 in order to become monstrous and remorseless, so that he may seek these victims without hesitation. Because many of the murders take place near the docks where shiploads of Japanese refugees are arriving, and leave behind the victims' bodies with holes in the neck where Dr. Levin has extracted the glands, the refugees claim that a vampire (whom they call "Seddok", though this is not a Japanese name) is responsible for the attacks. During a meeting with police, a restored-to-humanity Dr. Levin speculates that the Hiroshima survivors' tales of a mutated killer are due to psychological strain from the radiation damage to their bodies...but also wonders aloud whether the "vampire" these witnesses describe might simply be a disturbed man wishing to be normal again.

Cast

Actor Role
Alberto Lupo Prof. Alberto Levin
Susanne Loret Jeanette Moreneau
Sergio Fantoni Pierre Mornet
Franca Parisi Monique Riviere
Andrea Scotti
Rina Franchetti
Roberto Bertea Sacha
Ivo Garrani
Glamor Mora
Gianna Piaz

Technical details, premiere dates, running time and DVD release

Atom Age Vampire was filmed in 1.66:1 aspect ratio on 35-millimeter film and was first shown in Los Angeles on May 29, 1963, over two years after its 1960 production and original 1961 premiere in Italy. The running time of the Italian version was 105 minutes, but in its 1963 U.S. theatrical run, the film was shorn of 18 minutes, clocking in at 87 minutes. It lost an additional 15 to 18 minutes by the time it was released on videocassette and DVD, where the timing is generally given as 69 or 72 minutes. This public domain film has had a number of DVD releases,Template:Citation needed the earliest coming on March 20, 2001, paired with the unrelated U.S. horror/suspense title, Bloodlust!.

Although no 105 minute print has ever been found, it is believed by some that the 105 minute running time was because the deleted VHS release on Acme Video stated a run time of ±105 Mins. (when it meant 1 Hour and 5 Minutes).

References

  • Wingrove, David. (1985). Science Fiction Film Source Book. Longman Group Limited.




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Atom Age Vampire" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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