Directed by: Jack Cardiff
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Tom Baker, Brad Harris
Also known as: The Freakmaker, Dr of Evil
Description: Scientist experiments with crossing humans and plants, for which he uses his students. Students have been going missing from the local college, and the one person who knows what’s happened to them is Dr. Noller, a rogue biologist. Not satisfied with the pace of natural selection in driving evolution, Noller wants to push things further by creating his own genetically engineered creations. Having already created some amazing specimins by mixing the DNA of plants and animals, the doctor has now set his sights higher, and want to work on modifying humans, as well.
It started with some time-lapse film of plant-life and looked like a programme from the Open University – but then the soundtrack signalled something strange was happening…
“Mutations” owes a lot to Tod Browning’s “Freaks” but offers loads more: some nice 70’s nudity; plants that eat live rabbits (why not pet food?); dialogue that mentions “cloning dinosaurs”; a soundtrack that judders from spaced-out, slowed-down, phased bass to free form jazz. This is a minestrone of madness with some nice inconsitencies in the plot. Great!
Tom Baker was obviously heavily influenced by his role in this film and took most of the wardrobe with him for Dr Who!