It's very sad to see Joan Crawford reduced to appearing in this cheaply made and poorly written opus but she behaves like a STAR all the way through. Who else would have looked so good in a leotard at 62 years old? The film is set in a travelling circus (in reality the UK's Billy Smarts Circus, one of the best and biggest of its day)and much of the running time is taken up with showing the acts. As most UK circus acts are now animal free it's an interesting history lesson to see how these acts were actually presented. It's quite a breathtaking sight to watch a huge elephant step over half a dozen women prostrate on the floor and rather sad to see the lion tamer putting half a dozen snarling, growling beasts through their paces. Just look at Joans expression as she helps lead out the performing poodles though, she's loving every minute of it! We know that she had pet poodles of her own and she is really in her element here. The plot (what there is of it) doesn't bear too much scrutiny and the revelation of the killer and the motive are quite ridiculous. Also on the minus side of things are some poor performances - George Claydon in particular and a cringe-making musical comedy number which appears out of nowhere. There is also a hugely embarrassing scene with Crawford looking like an ancient ghost, wearing shoulder length hair and a neck high negligee, being romanced in her trailer by hunky Ty Hardin - she was 62 and he 37! On the plus side there are some great character actors appearing including the fabulous Diana Dors, Michael Gough, Ambrosine Phillpotts and Robert Hardy but only Diana Dors gives Crawford a run for her money. Overall this is still a fun film for Crawford fans but if you're going to watch it don't watch the trailer first as it shows every killing and even the death of the (supposed) murderer!
Horror / Mystery / Thriller
Horror / Mystery / Thriller
Monica Rivers is the owner and ringmaster of a traveling circus, and she'll stop at nothing to draw bigger audiences. When a series of mysterious murders begins to occur and some of her performers die gruesomely, her profits soar. She hires high-wire walker Frank Hawkins, impressed by the handsome and muscular young man. They begin an affair which arouses her previous lover Durando's jealousy. When Durando is found dead shortly afterward, the other performers begin to take alarm, as a mysterious killer is obviously loose in their midst. Many suspect Monica herself of the killings, especially Matilda, who has set her sights on Monica's new lover. At this point, Monica's unruly, sixteen-year-old daughter Angela is expelled from school for being incorrigible, and Monica is forced to take her into the circus, allowing her to become the partner of knife-thrower Gustavo. Meanwhile, the dead bodies continue to pile up...
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
June 04, 2020 at 07:09 PM