Mad Doctor of Blood Island

AKA: Grave Desires, Tomb of the Living Dead, Blood Doctor.

Tag line : Hideous zombies, lusting for bizarre human pleasures.

Mad Doctor of Blood IslandIf you're familiar with the film "Brides of Blood" (if not, use the links below to checkout my review NOW), you'll remember that it was set on the fictional "Blood Island". Well the director liked the name, so when he was asked to do another movie in a similar vein, he decided to use it again for this next film.

Owing nothing to the previous movie, apart from being set on an island with the same name, Dr Bill Foster (John Ashley, who co-incidentally also starred in "Brides of Blood", though in a different role) has been sent to the remote isle of Blood Island to investigate reports that some of the natives are turning green and going mad.

After doing some poking around, Foster discovers that this is the work of the islands physician, Dr Lorca (Ronald Remy), who's not been sticking to his hippocratic oath and has been performing some decidedly unethical experiments on some of the island folk with a mutant strain of chlorophyll, which has some "interesting" effects when injected into the human blood stream.

Lorco thinks it may hold the key to eternal life, even though it has the unfortunate side effect of turning its subjects into mutated green monsters. To compound matters, one of his test subjects has escaped, so now there's a huge green blooded monster with an extremely bad complexion loose on the island, which for some reason causes the camera to zoom in and out rapidly whenever its on screen, and has been going around dismembering the natives (particularly the scantily clad females).

So with the monster running around terrifying the locals and Lorca killing anyone that stands in the way of his research, Dr Foster and his group find they've got their work cut out for them if they want to bring his grisly experiments to a halt.

As with "Brides of Blood", which was filmed earlier in the same year (1968 to be precise), this is good old fashioned drive-in movie fair, featuring a fair old amount of nudity and blood for its day (though pretty tame by today's standards) and is extremely fun, in a cheesy kind of way (which reminds me, don't be surprised if the film starts with a prologue urging to viewer to drink a sample of green blood, which was a gimmick used for the films initial release at drive-in theatres).

If you've seen the previous movie, you may get a little confused if you come to this thinking its a sequel (which it isn't as such) as, despite being set on an island of the same name and utilising most of the same cast, including lead actor John Ashley, the story is completely unrelated and the cast are in completely different roles. So just remember to view this as a standalone film, otherwise you'll be left scratching your head as to how this all fits in.

There was actually a proper sequel filmed to this, entitled "Beast of Blood", which I've also reviewed, but be sure to check out this film first.

Overall Marks : 5/10.

Terrifying Trivia.

  • Alternate tag line "No waiting, no appointment, no escape".

  • Angelique Pettyjohn, who played Sheila, claimed that the love scene between her and John Astley was not simulated. However, the current DVD was struck from a print which had this scene removed and an uncut print no longer exists.

  • The film's budget was $125,000

  • The UK DVD released in 2003 on the Cinema Club label had 43s of cuts removed from it. These excised all the scenes of the natives killing their goats and pigs.

  • The film was billed as the "First audience participation horror movie" as customers were given a packet of green "blood", which they would be instructed to drink during a certain part of the movie.

  • The prologue of the film, instructing customers to drink the green blood, was actually filmed in the Philippines along with the rest of the film. The American extras used in it were teenagers who were living on the nearby US Clark Air Force base.

  • Ronald Remy, who plays Dr Lorca, was asked to shave his head for the part, but refused as he was concerned it wouldn't grow back properly.

  • The Sci-Fi film "The Green Slime" was released later the same year as this, and the producers feared it may affect their green blood promotion of the film. So they sent a load of fliers to theatres and drive ins saying "Rid your theatres of slime, and see a quality horror film, Mad Doctor of Blood Island". MGM's legal department subsequently threatened to sue them, so in response they just reproduced the letter and continued sending out the flyers with copies of it attached.

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Other films in the series.

  Spin - offs
Brides of Blood Beast of Blood   Brain of Blood

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