Blu-ray, DVD Release: Shanks

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: May 28, 2013
Price: DVD $24.95, Blu-ray $29.95
Studio: Olive Films

Shanks movie scene

Marcel Marceau is Shanks.

Starring world-renowned mime Marcel Marceau in a dual role, the bizarre 1974 cult horror-fantasy film Shanks is the final movie directed by William Castle, the equally renowned gimmick-loving horror filmmaker who produced Roman Polanski’s Rosemary’s Baby just a few years earlier.

Malcolm Shanks (Marceau) is a sad deaf and mute man living with his cruel sister (Tsilla Chelton) and her husband (Philippe Clay), who delight in making him miserable. His only pleasure, it seems, is in making and controlling puppets. This talent that earns him a job as a lab assistant to an weird professor (also Marceau) who is working on ways to re-animate dead bodies with electrodes and manipulating their bodies as if they were on strings. When the professor suddenly dies one night, Shanks gets the idea to apply their experimental results to a human body, and then to start exacting some revenge.

The strange PG-13 rated film didn’t do all that well at the box office, but it quickly picked up a cult following, as well as an Academy Award nomination for Best Score by Alex North.


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About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.