Joe Dante on

Captive Wild Woman

Released 1943
Distributor Universal

A circus ape transforms into doe-eyed sex-bomb Acquanetta via a brain swap performed by mad doctor John Carradine. A sci-fi twist on Universal’s popular Wolfman cycle, this was the first in a trio of ‘Paula the Ape-woman’ movies (including Jungle Woman and Jungle Captive). Resourcefully directed by former editor Edward Dmytryk, who structures his low budget thrills around circus footage from Kurt Neumann’s 1933 The Big Cage. Even with all that extra padding, the whole thing tops out to a zippy 61 minutes of gorilla-girl action.

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About Joe Dante

Joe Dante is a lifelong film buff who turned his obsession into a career. He got his start cutting trailers for Roger Corman and later directed the hit movie Gremlins, as well as Gremlins 2: The New BatchInnerspace and Small Soldiers for producer Steven Spielberg. His feature films include The HowlingPiranhaMatineeThe ‘burbs , Looney Tunes Back in ActionThe Hole (first winner of the 3D Persol Award at the Venice Film Festival) and the zom-com Burying the Ex. His TV directing work includes: Police SquadAmazing Stories, the HBO film The Second Civil War, the Masters of Horror titles Homecoming and The Screwfly Solution, and episodes of Eerie, IndianaCSI: NYHawaii 5-0Witches of East EndLegends of Tomorrow and Salem. His most recent big screen credit is an episode of the anthology film Nightmare Cinema. Joe is also the frequent co-host of Trailers From Hell’s official podcast, The Movies That Made Me, available everywhere podcasts are streamed and downloaded!

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