Silly, but entertaining. That’s the best way to describe “Corruption,” the story of a wealthy surgeon during the swinging 1960’s who would do anything to keep his young girlfriend happy. Even lop off the head of an attractive prostitute.
You see his girlfriend was disfigured by a photographer’s lamp when it toppled during a wild Austin-Powers style party. Now, Sir John Rowan (Peter Cushing) must restore her beauty using a wild process involving a cadaver’s pituitary gland. When the process must be repeated, Rowan must find or create fresh corpses to keep his fiancé happy and looking beautiful.
“Corruption” is a hoot. It was made in the late 1960’s and authentically depicts London’s free love and hip culture that was later lampooned in the Austin Powers comedies. Only this film was intended to be a serious horror flick and the costumes and sets are all that more enjoyable because…well, just because.
Peter Cushing is over-the-top crazy in this grindhouse-style goreathon. It’s hard to imagine the filmmakers didn’t know the end product would be campy. But, that makes little difference to today’s audience. I see “Corruption” as a time capsule, of sorts. There’s more gore and boobs than in similar British horror films of that time. In particular, the decapitation scene is a bit much, despite the lack of special effects. In other words, fiendishly delightful. Grade: B