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Attack of the Puppet People

film poster by Reynold Brown
Directed by Bert I. Gordon
Jack R. Berne (assistant director)
Produced by Bert I. Gordon
Samuel Z. Arkoff (exec. producer)
James H. Nicholson (exec. producer)
Written by Bert I. Gordon
George Worthing Yates
Starring John Agar
John Hoyt
June Kenney
Music by Don A. Ferris
Henry Schrage
Cinematography Ernest Laszlo
Editing by Ronald Sinclair
Distributed by American International Pictures
Release date(s) April 1958
Running time 79 minutes
Country Flag of the United States.svg
Language English

Attack of the Puppet People (also known as I Was a Teenage Doll (working title), Six Inches Tall (UK) and The Fantastic Puppet People) is a 1958 Black-and-white science fiction Horror film directed, produced and written by Bert I. Gordon. It stars John Hoyt as an eccentric doll maker. It was produced by Alta Vista Productions and distributed by American International Pictures.

The film was rushed into production by American International Pictures and Bert I. Gordon to capitalise on the success of The Incredible Shrinking Man, which had been released in 1957.

Contents

Plot

The film begins with a Brownie troop visiting a doll manufacturing company called Dolls Inc., owned and operated by the seemingly kindly Mr. Franz (John Hoyt). As the girls tour the factory, they see a number of very lifelike dolls stored in glass canisters locked in a display case on the wall. These are part of Mr. Franz’s special collection.

Sally Reynolds (June Kenney) answers a newspaper advertisement for a secretary; Franz's previous one has mysteriously vanished. Although she is concerned about his obsession with his dolls, she reluctantly agrees to take the job.

She soon meets a traveling salesman, Bob Westley (John Agar), who introduces himself as the best salesman in the universe and immediately sets about attempting to seduce her. Their relationship become serious enough that Bob persuades Sally to quit her job, promising to break the news to Franz.

The next day however, Franz informs Sally that Bob has gone back home to take care of business and that she should forget him. She, however, is unwilling to accept this and goes to the police with a theory about Franz' role in her boyfriend's disappearance ("He made Bob into a doll!"), but Sergeant Paterson (Jack Kosslyn) is skeptical.

Franz has developed a machine which can shrink people down to a sixth of their original size. He then uses it on anyone who tries to leave him. When he finds that Sally plans to quit, she becomes his latest victim.

Mr Franz stands over his miniature prisoners

Franz has already miniaturized at least four other "friends". They are stored in suspended animation (which he has also invented) in glass jars in a display case in his office. After a reunion between Sally and Bob, Franz reveals how the process works and why he miniaturizes people (it seems that he developed a strong phobia against being alone after his wife left him). Periodically, Franz awakens his captives to enjoy parties he throws for them.

During a welcoming party for the two newcomers, Franz has to deal with full-size friend and customer Emil (Michael Mark). The prisoners try, but fail to call for help. However, Sergeant Paterson begins investigating Franz, as many people he knows seems to be missing. After Franz is questioned by Paterson, he panics, announcing to his miniature prisoners that he plans to kill them and himself before he can be caught. He takes his troupe to an old theatre, supposedly to test his repairs on Emil's marionette. There, he throws one last party, making his captives act out Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde for him.

Bob and Sally manage to escape and make it back to Franz's workshop. Franz tracks them down, but not before they are able to return themselves to normal size. They leave to fetch the police, despite his feeble pleas. The fate of the other prisoners still miniaturized and frozen is not revealed.

Cast

Actor Role
John Agar Bob Westley
John Hoyt Mr. Franz
June Kenney Sally Reynolds
Michael Mark Emil
Jack Kosslyn Sergeant Paterson
Marlene Willis Laurie/Themesong Vocalist
Ken Miller Stan
Laurie Mitchell Georgia Lane
Scott Peters Mac
Susan Gordon Agnes
June Jocelyn Brownie Leader
Jean Moorhead Janet
Hank Patterson Janitor
Hal Bogart Special Delivery Man
Troy Patterson Elevator Operator
Bill Giorgio Delivery Man
George Diestel Police Receptionist
Jamie Forster Ernie Larson
Mark Lowell Salesman

Reaction

Attack of the Puppet People has had a generally poor reception amongst critics. Originally released as part of a double bill for the drive-in theater market, it was made for an undisclosed sum and box office receipts are not available. The film although much criticized for its weak plot and poor special effects has gained somewhat of a cult status among fans of the B movie genre and this led to its ultimate release by MGM on DVD as part of their Midnite Movies collection.

Clips have featured on a number of compilation videos including It Came From Hollywood (1982) (a compilation of clips from some of the worst movies of all time), Horrible Horror (1986) and Creepy Classics (1987).

References

See also

External links

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Attack of the Puppet People
File:Attack of the Puppet People
film poster by Reynold Brown
Directed by Bert I. Gordon
Jack R. Berne (assistant director)
Produced by Bert I. Gordon
Samuel Z. Arkoff (exec. producer)
James H. Nicholson (exec. producer)
Written by Bert I. Gordon
George Worthing Yates
Starring John Agar
John Hoyt
June Kenney
Music by Don A. Ferris
Henry Schrage
Cinematography Ernest Laszlo
Editing by Ronald Sinclair
Distributed by American International Pictures
Release date(s) April 1958
Running time 79 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Attack of the Puppet People (also known as I Was a Teenage Doll (working title), Six Inches Tall (UK) and The Fantastic Puppet People) is a 1958 American black-and-white science fiction Horror film directed, produced and written by Bert I. Gordon. It stars John Hoyt as an eccentric doll maker. It was produced by Alta Vista Productions and distributed by American International Pictures.

The film was rushed into production by American International Pictures and Bert I. Gordon to capitalise on the success of The Incredible Shrinking Man, which had been released in 1957.

Contents

Plot

The film begins with a Brownie troop visiting a doll manufacturing company called Dolls Inc., owned and operated by the seemingly kindly Mr. Franz (John Hoyt). As the girls tour the factory, they see a number of very lifelike dolls stored in glass canisters locked in a display case on the wall. These are part of Mr. Franz’s special collection.

Sally Reynolds (June Kenney) answers a newspaper advertisement for a secretary; Franz's previous one has mysteriously vanished. Although she is concerned about his obsession with his dolls, she reluctantly agrees to take the job.

She soon meets a traveling salesman, Bob Westley (John Agar), who introduces himself as the best salesman in St. Louis and immediately sets about attempting to seduce her. Their relationship become serious enough that Bob persuades Sally to quit her job, promising to break the news to Franz.

The next day however, Franz informs Sally that Bob has gone back home to take care of business and that she should forget him. She, however, is unwilling to accept this and goes to the police with a theory about Franz' role in her boyfriend's disappearance ("He made Bob into a doll!"), but Sergeant Paterson (Jack Kosslyn) is skeptical. Franz has developed a machine which can shrink people down to a sixth of their original size. He then uses it on anyone who tries to leave him. When he finds that Sally plans to quit, she becomes his latest victim.

Franz has already miniaturized at least four other "friends". They are stored in suspended animation (which he has also invented) in glass jars in a display case in his office. After a reunion between Sally and Bob, Franz reveals how the process works and why he miniaturizes people (it seems that he developed a strong phobia against being alone after his wife left him). Periodically, Franz awakens his captives to enjoy parties he throws for them.

During a welcoming party for the two newcomers, Franz has to deal with full-size friend and customer Emil (Michael Mark). The prisoners try, but fail to call for help. However, Sergeant Paterson begins investigating Franz, as many people he knows seems to be missing. After Franz is questioned by Paterson, he panics, announcing to his miniature prisoners that he plans to kill them and himself before he can be caught. He takes his troupe to an old theatre, supposedly to test his repairs on Emil's marionette. There, he throws one last party, making his captives act out Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde for him.

Bob and Sally manage to escape and make it back to Franz's workshop. Franz tracks them down, but not before they are able to return themselves to normal size. They leave to fetch the police, despite his feeble pleas. The fate of the other prisoners still miniaturized and frozen is not revealed.

Cast

  • John Agar as Bob Westley
  • John Hoyt as Mr. Franz
  • June Kenney as Sally Reynolds
  • Michael Mark as Emil
  • Jack Kosslyn as Sergeant Paterson
  • Marlene Willis as Laurie/Themesong Vocalist
  • Ken Miller as Stan
  • Laurie Mitchell as Georgia Lane
  • Scott Peters as Mac
  • Susan Gordon as Agnes
  • June Jocelyn as Brownie Leader

Popular and Critical Reception

Attack of the Puppet People has had a generally poor reception amongst critics. Originally released as part of a double bill for the drive-in theater market, it was made for an undisclosed sum and box office receipts are not available. Although criticized for its weak plot and poor special effects, the film has gained somewhat of a cult status among fans of the B movie genre and this led to its ultimate release by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer on DVD as part of the "Midnite Movies" collection.

Clips have featured on a number of compilation videos including It Came From Hollywood (1982) a compilation of clips from "the worst movies of all time", Horrible Horror (1986), and Creepy Classics (1987).

References

See also

External links


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