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Image Entertainment presents
She Demons (1957)

"Do not be sorry for my little specimens, because in a few days they'll be able to renew their own character cells again and be normal as before. Which is very convenient, because that way I can use them over and over again."
- Col. Karl Osler (Rudolph Anders)

Review By: Mark Zimmer   
Published: June 05, 2001

Stars: Irish McCalla, Tod Griffin, Victor Sen Yung, Rudolph Anders
Other Stars: Gene Roth, Leni Tana, The Diana Nellis Dancers
Director: Richard E. Cunha

Manufacturer: WAMO
MPAA Rating: G for (violence, gore, Nazi experimentation, bondage, torture)
Run Time: 01h:16m:27s
Release Date: May 29, 2001
UPC: 014381981025
Genre: cult

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer
B- C+C-B- C-

DVD Review

Nothing makes a cult film like a bunch of Nazis conducting weird experiments, female monsters, volcanoes, bondage and torture...and scantily clad dancing girls. She Demons comes up with all of these, with horribly bad monster makeup to boot.

An expedition in search of rumored "animal people" gets cast ashore on an uncharted island. Spoiled heiress Jeri Turner (Irish McCalla), backgroundless hero Fred Macklin (Tod Griffin) and bad comedy sidekick Sammy Ching (Victor Sen Yung) soon learn that the island is about to be bombed into oblivion. Searching the area (apparently having nothing better to do), they stumble onto a camp of Nazis holding a group of young women captive. Sneaking into the complex, they discover Col. Karl "the Butcher" Osler, who is conducting cruel experiments on the native girls that causes them to become animalistic She Demons! Soon the group is captured, and Jeri faces the choice of surrending to Nazi lust, or becoming a She Demon herself!

Statuesque bleached-blonde McCalla (who starred as television's Sheena, Queen of the Jungle) is entertaining as Jeri, with such classic "rich girl" lines as, "You could have at least thought to have saved one pair of toreador pants," upon being shipwrecked. The Nazis are suitably menacing, although Gene Roth, as the sadistic Igor, has an accent that won't quite stay put.

The monster makeup is truly terrible, with eyes that sometimes look glued on, huge fake protruding teeth and obvious finger extensions for the massive claws. There is one truly effective and horrific moment near the end, when Osler's wife removes a part of the bandages that obscure her face. During the fight sequences, the director uses stunt doubles that don't even vaguely resemble the actors in height or hair color!

Not nearly as dependent on stock footage as other grade Z movies, this picture instead gets its padding from the dance numbers performed by the native girls. This group, the Diana Nellis Dancers from a dance school, does a nice job of conveying sensuality while staying fully clothed.

Although clearly made on half-a-shoestring, She Demons still manages to be pretty entertaining in a high camp way. Several sequences even generate suspense and are exciting to boot, lifting this well above the usual bottom-half-of-the-double-bill-at-the-drive-in fodder.

Rating for Style: B-
Rating for Substance: C+


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: The black and white source material is highly variable. At times pristine, at others it is subject to scratches and scuffs, as well as serious speckling. The transfer is crisp and detailed, with excellent black levels and good contrast.

Image Transfer Grade: C-


Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access

Audio Transfer Review: The mono English track sounds surprisingly good. The jungle music comes through nicely, with good bass response. Dialogue is mostly clear throughout, although McCalla swallows a few lines that are unintelligible. Hiss and noise levels are quite low, making for a pleasant audio experience.

Audio Transfer Grade: B-


Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 12 cues and remote access
1 Original Trailer(s)
5 Other Trailer(s) featuring Mesa of Lost Women, Teenage Doll, The Brain from Planet Arous, Things to Come, Cat-Women of the Moon
Production Notes
Packaging: Snapper
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: The best extra here is a lengthy essay on the film, including interview snippets with some of the principals, by horror film writer Tom Weaver. This essay is found on the snapper gatefold cover. A trailer in decent condition is provided, as well as trailers for five others in the Wade Williams Collection. Better than usual for this series.

Extras Grade: C-


Final Comments

A pretty enjoyable monster romp complete with Nazis, bondage and all the rest. Worth a look if you're after a campy cult experience.


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