Film Reviews, News & Competitions


Karloff: Maniacal Mayhem

Film Information

Plot: Three Karloff tales of terror from the vaults of Universal.
Release Date: 17th October.
Format: Limited edition blu-ray.
Director(s): Lambert Hillyer, Arthur Lubin, Joseph Pevney.
Cast: Boris Karloff, Charles Laughton, Bela Lugosi.
BBFC Certificate: PG.
Running Time: 230 mins.
Country Of Origin: USA.
Language: English.
Review By: Paula Hammond.
Film Rating


Bottom Line

Another gem for your collection.

Posted October 10, 2022 by

Film Review

Eureka are really spoiling us. Last month their limited edition blu-ray, Karloff Universal Terror, shone the spotlight on a trio of post-Frankenstein Universal dramas. This month, Karloff: Maniacal Mayhem opens the vaults to deliver three more tales which are available on blu-ray for the first time ever in the UK.

First up is The Invisible Ray (Lambert Hillyer, 1936) in which Karloff’s Dr Rukh is exposed to a strange and mysterious substance that turns him into a murderous luminescent maniac.

In Black Friday (Arthur Lubin, 1940), Karloff is a misguided surgeon whose amoral experiments of his friend have Jekyll and Hyde style results.

Finally, The Strange Door (Joseph Pevney, 1951) teams the ever brilliant Karloff with the ever brilliant Charles Laughton as a dastardly aristo whose plans are thwarted when his much-abused brother and manservant team-up to save the day—and the girl.

It’s an interesting and eminently watchable trio, but the gem in every production is undoubtedly Karloff who always manages to bring a little magic to each performance. The teaming of Laughton and Karloff makes The Strange Door the best of the trio by spades, and fans should enjoy seeing both actors squeeze every ounce of fun from what could otherwise have been a very creaky little melodrama. 

All three films are presented from 2K scans of the original films on blu-ray for the first time in the UK. Each is accompanied by an enlightening and humorous commentaries with a limited edition slipcase and collector’s booklets.

Another gem for your collection.


  • Limited Edition slipcase (2000 copies).
  • 1080p presentation of all three films across two Blu-ray discs.
  • All films presented from 2K scans of the original film elements.
  • Optional English SDH.
  • Brand new audio commentary tracks on The Invisible Ray and The Strange Door with author Stephen Jones and author / critic Kim Newman.
  • Brand new audio commentary track on Black Friday with Kevin Lyons and Jonathan Rigby
  • “The Sire de Maletroit’s Door” radio adaptations.
  • Stills Galleries
  • Trailers.
  • A limited edition collector’s booklet featuring new writing on all three films by film writers Andrew Graves, Rich Johnson, and Craig Ian Mann (2000 copies).

Paula Hammond - Features Editor

Paula Hammond is a full-time, freelance journalist. She regularly writes for more magazines than is healthy and has over 25 books to her credit. When not frantically scribbling, she can be found indulging her passions for film, theatre, cult TV, sci-fi and real ale. If you should spot her in the pub, after five rounds rapid, she’ll be the one in the corner mumbling Ghostbusters quotes and waiting for the transporter to lock on to her signal… Email:


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