The Gruesome Twosome (1967)


The Gruesome Twosome Storyline

Mrs. Pringle and her son Rodney run a wig store which they stock by scalping young coeds who show up to look at the “room for rent.” Meanwhile, at the local college, Kathy is determined to figure out who is killing her classmates, much to boyfriend Dave’s irritation. When her friend Dawn disappears, Kathy gets closer to the truth as she begins investigating the Pringles’ lair.—Ed Sutton

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The Gruesome Twosome Movie Reviews

A horror film padded out to the extreme!

H.G. Lewis like to stage bloody set pieces. However in order to show them off he likes to make a feature length film. Many of them aren’t very good and they’re padded out to make the 70 minute mark. The gruesome Twosome is one of those films. The film revolves around a crazy old lady who makes nice realistic looking wigs and her ogreish son. She has a secret in her wig making that you’ll find hair raising. They’re many filler scenes placed through out the movie. The most notorious one (and clever) takes place in the beginning where two wigs are holding a conversation. The gore set pieces are cool but you’ll have to sit through the movie to experience them.

Recommended for campy cult fans.


Fun, but still a lesser HGL gore epic.

Herschell Gordon Lewis splatterfests are always good for some genuine chuckles, although in order to get to the good stuff here, one has to sit through quite a bit of padding. And that’s saying something, since this only runs 72 minutes long as it is. The gore is deliciously tacky and plentiful when it appears, and there are some brilliant touches. To start with, the movie is opened with the surrealism of two Styrofoam wig heads having a conversation about the upcoming plot – after which, one of them gets stabbed. Too bad most of the movie isn’t that inspired. At the very least, much like other HGL efforts from this era, there’s a lot of entertainment to be had with the antagonists, as demented a pair as you’ll ever see.

Elizabeth Davis stars as Mrs. Pringle, a dotty old woman who specializes in making realistic wigs. Just how does she craft these things? Let’s just say that it involves luring young women to her place of business, under the pretense of offering them room for rent, and then ushering them into her back room, where they’re promptly introduced to her drooling idiot son Rodney (Chris Martell), who’s quite handy with knives. A college coed named Kathy (Gretchen Wells), an obsessive wannabe Nancy Drew, notes the amount of her peers disappearing, and makes a nuisance of herself playing amateur detective.

Were it not for Davis and Martell, this wouldn’t be that enjoyable. They just play their parts for everything that they’re worth. Davis is especially hysterical. The rest of the acting is pretty much what you’d expect from anything Lewis directed. (Look for Ray Sager in a bit part; he went on to play the title role in Lewis’s “The Wizard of Gore”.) Still, some of the padding is amusing, especially when Kathy and pals dance about while about enjoying some KFC. While this doesn’t reach the lunatic heights of “Blood Feast”, “Two Thousand Maniacs!”, or even “The Gore Gore Girls”, “The Gruesome Twosome” is still an okay watch for people who favour the trashy and silly B flicks of decades past. Sometimes you can’t ask for more.

Isn’t that right, Napoleon?

Six out of 10.

Gruesome alright, but really ridiculous also

The Gruesome Twosome is a lot like any other Herschell Gordon Lewis film in that it features a ridiculous plot line, a plethora of useless performances, buckets of gore and some real nasty sequences. As usual, the director sets out his plot and it doesn’t go anywhere from there. There aren’t any twists in this film and what you see is very much what you get. While this simple formula is fun, it is rather monotonous also; and if you’ve seen a few other HG movies prior to seeing this one (as I had), it’s safe to say that there isn’t all that much here. The film kicks off with a suitably demented scene that sees two head models with wigs having a conversation with each other. From there, we learn that a wig maker’s shop is getting its realistic hair straight from women’s heads, as the old woman who runs the shop employs her retarded son to scalp the young women who comes looking to move into the abandoned apartment next door. The piece is made more ridiculous by the way that the old lady talks to Napoleon; who just happens to be a big stuffed cat!

I’m never really sure if HG Lewis movies are meant to be bad, or if the director is just grossly talentless. The acting is so bad that it’s arguably not even acting; between speaking parts, some of the actors are visibly laughing – I don’t know if the whole thing is meant to be a joke. The film only lasts for the seventy or so minutes, and so you’d expect that even a plot as basic as this one would be able to be stretched; but the Godfather of Gore obviously didn’t know what to do with it, meaning that way over half of the film is made up of useless scenes that add nothing to the plot and serve only in making the whole piece more weird. HG movies have a sort of otherworldly feel about them stemming from the fact that they are so inept; nobody in real life acts like the people in HG movies do, and this movie adheres to that styling. The characters are non-existent and the way they react to the local murders is purely stupid. The murder scenes themselves are grisly as usual, but as is the case with everything else in this film; they’re impossible to take seriously. Overall, this really is a terrible movie; but there’s something about HG movies that make them better than most trash, and while I won’t argue with bad words against this film; I did enjoy watching it.