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Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte

Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963) Movie Poster
Mexico  •    •  80m  •    •  Directed by: Federico Curiel.  •  Starring: Wolf Ruvinskis, Julio Alemán, Armando Silvestre, Roberto Ramírez Garza, Guillermo Álvarez Bianchi, Rodolfo Landa, Claudio Brook, Jack Taylor, Ernesto Finance, David Lama, Rosa Arenas.  •  Music by: Enrico C. Cabiati.
    This Mexican thriller was the sequel to 1961's Neutron and the Black Mask. Nasty old Dr.Caronte, assumed to be dead, is back in harness. This time Caronte develops a race of robot monsters, with which he hopes to... all together now.... RULE THE WORLD. But the mysterious masked Mexican superhero Neutron isn't about to let Caronte have his way.

Review:

Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Image from: Neutrón contra el Dr. Caronte (1963)
Quick second sequel to the hit film NEUTRON, THE MAN IN THE BLACK MASK follows on only a day after the ending of the second movie. Neutron has prevailed, Dr. Caronte has been killed and the world is at peace...at least until now. You see, there's another bad guy in town. A huge foreigner (his country is unspecified) who is determined to find the secrets of the bomb for himself. Guarding them is the survivor from the first two films, the British Professor Thomas.

Basically, this is the same mixture of poor dubbing, wooden acting, cheesy action, and cheap props as in the first film and it's just as exciting, although I have one major quibble with it which I'll get to later. The sound crackles intolerably and, in a rather hilarious display of ineptitude, a hair is actually stuck in the camera lens for a period of twenty minutes or so. I guess they must have played the film back and figured "what the heck!", couldn't be bothered to re-film all those scenes again so just left it in. But surely you'd think that the cameraman would spot it, though? Neutron appears only ten minutes into the film, where he beats up a trio of thugs who are attempting to steal the formula. Sadly, this is just about Neutron's only activity in this movie; unforgivably he takes no part in the action-packed finale, and he seems almost weak here and unwilling to take risks, with only two or three fight scenes. In fact he appears in it so little that it's a wonder they didn't change the title to something more appropriate.

Still, even if Neutron is conspicuous by his absence, there isn't much time to miss him as this is as action-packed and as short as always. Caronte is unmasked (!), cornered, and apparently commits suicide only to return from the grave; heroine Nora is kidnapped along with Neutron, who is also unmasked; those ugly-faced hulking monsters in boiler suits are running around again and hiding in their pit, Caronte's evil dwarf sidekick Nick (!) takes a greater role and does all manner of wicked and despicable deeds (although I find it hard to believe that Nora doesn't realise that Nick is disguised as her taxi driver when his head can barely see over the dash!) and events culminate in a large bout of fisticuffs back at Caronte's secret laboratory, with Neutron's friend battling Caronte who now inhabits the body of the Professor (through the process of "personality swapping" don't you know). It's all action and most of it you won't believe.

Highlights include a scene where a villain is buried alive by Caronte and his dwarf - with Caronte seemingly not realising that his own monsters are standing in the grave as well! There are more mixed identities than in MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE II and it's twice as confusing, as half the time you won't know who's who. At one point Caronte uses the tome of Merlin to create a magic spell - talk about stuck for ideas! All this is padded out by an incompetent (what else?) police investigation, some singing in a nightclub as per usual, and other extraneous bits that won't register.

As for the acting...well, in some instances it simply has to be seen to be believed. Wolf Ruvinskis displays athleticism when Neutron does get to fight bad guys, and is quite likable without the mask too. Rosa Arenas makes for a heroine who isn't irritating, while Julio Aleman has a ball as the evil Caronte. However, stealing the show is the dwarf, Nick, who, resplendent with his single eyebrow and hoarse croakingfemale voice (!) dominates the scenes every scene he appears in! Just check out the way he walks too. Sure, this is a low budget production and it shows (some footage has been inserted from the first film) but the spirit is there and this makes it an enjoyable, if dumbfounding, experience.


Review by Leofwine_draca from the Internet Movie Database.