Last night’s film was quite a departure from the blood and gore flicks I’ve recently screened. I often said the 1940’s were the weakest decade for horror movies. The real life horrors of World War II totally distinguished the audiences interest in made up horror. The Invisible Woman is a good example of what Universal Pictures was turning out to fill the horror void … romantic comedies with just a bit of the old monsters tossed in.
The film opens with a familiar looking butler carrying a tray and falling down the steps, leaving no doubt that this will be a comedy. Amazingly, the film is filled with accomplished actors and actresses in supporting roles. Anyone who watches black & white movies or 60’s TV shows will spot familiar faces in just about every scene. The cast includes Shemp Howard of the 3 Stooges, Margaret Hamilton from The Wizard of Oz and Charles Lane from Petticoat Junction among others. Half the fun of watching The Invisible Woman is spotting everyone.
The Invisible Woman is lots of fun in a silly and non frightening way. The film contains no murders, no blood, horseplay rather than violence, no visible nudity, no monsters, no serial killers and an absent minded professor instead of a mad scientist. A girl volunteers to become invisible so she can go back to her job and torment her boss into treating her and the other the fashion models better. There’s a nice bit involving the woman chugging a bottle of grain alcohol and a 3 Stooges like brawl featuring Shemp. Finally the “he’s not saving me that easily” ending has to be seen to be believed.