Friday, September 09, 2005

Guilty Pleasures - The Leech Woman

This is a movie I first saw as a child. It's so campy and fun. The "heroine" is the alcoholic, aging wife of a doctor. He treats her like crap, but she has money, so he can't alienate her too much. His gorgeous nurse and his lawyer are in love - young and beautiful. One day, a really old woman comes to his office for help. When he examines her, he is amazed that she is so old. She tells him she's from Africa where her tribe has found a fountain of youth drug. If he takes her back, she will give him the secret. So he sweet talks his wife into funding the trip, and they head off.

The old woman is the head of her tribe (though why she's in LA, I don't know). The secret drug is something called Naipey (or something like that). But there's just one catch: to make the powder work, you have to mix it with fluid harvested from the base of a man's neck. The means to harvest? A really wicked looking claw ring which, of course, kills the man.

The Americans witness the old woman turning into a gorgeous young woman after taking this drug. She then puts them in a guarded hut and offers the potion to the heroine. Because the doctor has in the meantime told her that she's a hag and he wants to be rid of her, she takes the tribal leader up on her offer, and sticks it to her husband. She immediately grows young. The leader gives her a supply of the powder, and the heroine and the other members of her team head back to civilization (note: all the members are men). The effects of this youth serum turn out to be temporary, and when they wear off, the woman is older than she was before. So by the time she reaches an airport, she has killed all the men to stay young.

She returns to LA - but she cannot resume her old identity without lots of questions, so she pretends to be her niece. She makes an appointment with young, gorgeous lawyer-guy, skips taking the potion so she appears older, and sets up funds for her "neice" (Terry?) who is flying in later that week. After doing so, she makes some excuse and leaves. She then hunts for a man, kills him, and takes the potion.

As Terry, she seduces the lawyer away from his nurse girlfriend who quickly becomes suspicious. Ultimately, the lawyer is in jeopardy when he's with her at a time when the potion wears off. Leech woman misses her treatment and quickly turns in dust as age catches up. The nurse forgives lawyer guy, and they live happily ever after.

It's a classic B-horror film.


Rinda Elliott said...

Okay, gotta see this one.

Your guilty pleasure list is full of movies I've never seen.

I'll admit one of mine to be nice -- Galaxy Quest. LOL--movie cracks me up. I put it in the VCR when I need to feel cheerful.

Gena Showalter said...

I love Galaxy Quest. I told my husband we needed to buy the DVD "for the kids" but I'm the one who watches it :)

Kelli McBride said...

I have GALAXY QUEST, too, and I love it. What a great homage to Star Trek!

It is one of my favs.