A Vermont housewife finds that the last boy on the bus, the boy who hasn’t left the bus because he doesn’t seem to know that he’s arrived at his home, both is and somehow is not her son Charlie. He looks mostly right, sounds mostly right, but he is different; rather than being a severely asthmatic weakling, this boy seems more robust, even more mature. No one — not the bus driver, the sheriff, the neighbors, the husband, the older daughter — can tell if this is really Charlie. Each falls back upon the strange, perhaps inexplicable observation, “You’re his mother; you should know.” Continue reading “The Boy on the Bus”
(1972, not rated) Christopher Walken (Pvt. James Reese), Joss Ackland (Dr. Frederick), Ralph Meeker (The Major), Ronny Cox (Sgt. Boford Miles), Marco St. John (Shannon). Music: Phil Ramone and Chris Dedrick (performed by Free Design). Screenplay: Ron Whyte, based on the play The Happiness Cage by Dennis Reardon. Director: Bernard Girard. 94 minutes.
Notable: Christopher Walken’s first starring role.
Army Private James Reese has anger issues, which lands him in a highly secluded and heavily secured country estate somewhere in the West German countryside. He and two other American soldiers are under the exclusive care of Dr. Frederick, who seems to be anything but an ordinary general practitioner. As Reese discovers that his orderly, Shannon, behaves more like a sadistic prison guard, and that his doctor has a separate laboratory with monkeys who appear to have had some sort of surgery performed upon their brains, he comes to realize that his presence is less for recovery than it is for experimentation. Continue reading “The Mind Snatchers (1972)”