Cold as Ice: “The Frozen Dead” (1966)


WILL SOMEONE PLEASE PASS THE STRUDEL?: Life is replete with all manner of awkward mobility issues especially when one is reduced to a severed head, as discovered by a particularly vexed young lady in the Herbert J. Leder’s mad-Nazi-science-on-the-loose picture, “The Frozen Dead”.

                 “The Frozen Dead”  (1966)

     If one were take Hollywood’s version of history at face value, Germany’s defeat in World War II had little to do with the strangulation of resources and manpower by an encircling Allied Army or the depletion of men and arms stalemated on the Russian Front, but in the High Command’s sudden abandonment of a traditional war effort in favor of a diverse program of Lionel Atwill-inspired mad scientist schemes designed to resurrect the Reich decades in the future and achieve world dominance through the use of chemistry sets and noisy Tesla coils.

    “The Frozen Dead” perpetuates this loopy tradition in which nonsense science-based Nazi wish fulfillment is given a dedicated champion in the form of Dana Andrews whose Dr. Norberg, though regarded by his sore loser Aryan peers as the Clarence Birdseye of quick frozen Hitlerian fanatics, is experiencing frustration in his inability to initiate a successful defrosting process which doesn’t leave his subjects either dead or nightmarishly crippled by becoming mentally frozen at a specific memory point in time, which they mechanically replay ad infinitum; thus, one unceasingly combs his hair, while another childishly weeps over a remembered loss, while yet another endlessly bounces an invisible rubber ball. Dr. Norberg’s similarly revived and mentally impeded brother (played by Edward Fox) is consumed violence, or so we’re told, although he appears the calmest  of the experiment’s failed subjects for much of the film. However, it is Norberg’s assistant Karl Essen (Alan Tilvern) who clumsily sets off a chain of events which will ultimately result in the death and experimental decapitation of Elsa (Kathleen Breck), a friend of  Norberg’s niece, Jean (Anna Palk).

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About chandlerswainreviews

I've been a puppet, a pirate, a pauper, a poet, a pawn and a king, not necessarily in that order. My first major movie memory was being at the drive-in at about 1 1/2 yrs. old seeing "Sayonara" so I suppose an interest in film was inevitable. (For those scoring at home- good for you- I wasn't driving that evening, so no need to alert authorities.)Writer, critic and confessed spoiler of women, as I have a tendency to forget to put them back in the refrigerator. My apologies.
This entry was posted in Drive-In Movies, horror, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, science fiction, women, World War II, writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Cold as Ice: “The Frozen Dead” (1966)

  1. beetleypete says:

    How did I ever miss this one? It looks great! I hope I can find it on DVD! This film needs reviving as much as those bodies in the tanks did!
    Regards, Herbert J. Leder Jnr.

  2. tashpix says:

    Sounds positively delirious!

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