Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you took one of those cheesey sci-fi films from the 50’s and mixed it with a 70’s exploitation style horror film? I have…and I had always heard that William Sachs’ “The Incredible Melting Man” was right up that alley.
Despite hearing many good things, I had put off watching it for a very long time. Recently, I decided to give it a whirl and though it’s far from ‘incredible,’ it still has its moments.
Steve West is exposed to radiation, while traveling in space and is the sole survivor of his space expedition. He contracts a strange disease from the radiation, making his skin melt unless he has fresh human blood. He loses touch with his sanity and breaks free from the hospital, killing and consuming anyone he comes into contact with.
This film has some nice effects even for one of those (man in a rubber suit) sub-genre films and it’s only real drawback is it tends to drag a bit in the last half hour of the film. It really is a welcome change that brings back a little bit of that radiation nostalgia from all of those wonderfully bad nature-gone-amok nuclear bomb-inspired films. It has a decent amount of gore, but is mostly off-screen violence.
The film does a good job of making the main character seem like he is in horrible pain and he projects through the make up very well that he is conflicted about killing. However, during the finale, it’s almost like they switched actors (I didn’t look into it…perhaps someone will prove me right or wrong); during the “end fight” he is filled with energy, running around and moving much less naturally than he had throughout the whole film.
All in all I really liked this movie and wish I had seen it much sooner. I totally suggest that you all give this one some attention. This film gets the Rottin’ Roger Demarco seal of approval with 3.5 severed heads out of 5.