Classics of the Corn: The Incredible Two-Headed Transplant (1971)

(Image: Super Beast Creative)
(Image: Super Beast Creative)

Roger Girard is a wealthy doctor who is conducting experiments with the aim of discovering a way to successfully transplant human heads.

Roger has hired a man to take care of his property while he works, and that man has a full grown son named Danny whose mind never developed past childhood.

One day, Roger’s home is invaded by a killer on the loose and Danny’s father is killed. Danny is incredibly upset, but things are about to get even worse for him when Dr. Girard decides to transplant the killer’s head onto Danny’s body.

Anthony M. Lanza directs 1971’s The Incredible Two-Headed Transplant, a science-fiction thriller of epically corny proportions. John Lawrence (The Loners) and James Gordon White (The Mini-Skirt Mob) collaborated on the script.

Straight out of the gate, The Incredible Two-Headed Transplant is oozing with cheese. Shots of foliage and inanimate objects intermixed with shots of murder (in which the “dead” victims are obviously still breathing) make up the film’s opening.

On top of that we’ve got kooky music, a slow-mo’ run through the hills, lots of overdramatic staring by just about all of the characters, a murderer who tries to pick up field rodents and cuddle with them. (WHAT?)

Pre-human transplant, we learn that Dr. Girard has been testing his transplants on other animals, particularly monkeys and rabbits. This all sounds quite normal for a film about scientific experimentation, and usually it would make me very sad to see animals being treated this way. Luckily for me, the horrible special effects stopped that from happening. I was too busy laughing at the fact that the extra heads were very obviously cut off of those stuffed animals you can buy at zoo gift shops to get sad.

(Image: impawards.com)
(Image: impawards.com)

Even if the film had stellar special effects and lifelike second heads, the acting would be enough for me to reserve the film a spot in the overpopulated graveyard that lies below the Corny Cliff.

Forcing the film’s tumble off of the Cliff are John Bloom as Danny and Albert Cole as Cass, our maniacal killer.

Bloom tries so hard to act like he isn’t all there in the brain that his performance comes off as incredibly overzealous and brings so many laughs. An early scene in which he flails around the sidewalk in front of the house swinging an ax aimlessly nearly had me in tears.

Cole is equally great at overacting. He’s legitimately creepy at times (when he actually gets his hands on a victim), but most of the time his crazy eyes and leering are just so over-the-top.

Put Bloom and Cole together as a single, two-headed person and you’ve got one of the greatest horror-corn monster performances of all time. This one belongs in the hall of fame, folks.

Clearly, there is a lot of hilarity to be enjoyed in The Incredible Two-Headed Transplant. The film does drag a bit in the middle, but it eventually becomes even more ridiculous once Danny and Cass wake up and realize that they’re sharing a body, going forth to terrorize the entire town. Cass turns into a bit of a “Jan in the Pan” character in the second half of the film, especially in the scene where he and Danny wake up from surgery.

Fellow fans of the corn, 1971’s The Incredible Two-Headed Transplant is not a film to miss. It’s one of the nuttiest, funniest films I’ve watched so far for the Classics of the Corn series. Corny Cliff Scale Score: 5/5

9 thoughts on “Classics of the Corn: The Incredible Two-Headed Transplant (1971)

  1. This was something else, wasn’t it? Good lord, what cornball hilarity! The poster actually makes it look better than it was, which in itself is hard to believe. A man-child in bib overalls and a slobbering killer as one…what next, a white bigot and a black convict? YES! And you MUST check it out! It’s called ‘The Thing with Two Heads’, starring Ray Milland and ex-NFL defenseman Rosey Grier, and it’s on the MGM ‘Midnite Movies’ double feature set. It’s more campy than ‘THW2H’, and thus a little more fun to watch. I’ll be expecting to see it on a ‘Classics of the Corn’ post soon!

    By the way, the gardener father of Danny was played by Larry Vincent, who hosted a Saturday horror movie show called ‘Seymour Presents’, a great show that I watched as a kid in the ’70s!

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    1. I just might have to buy that Midnite Movies set, it’s only $6 on Amazon. What’s with all of the corny films Ray Milland made later in his career? If I review The Thing with Two Heads, it will mark Milland’s second appearance in the COTC series (the first being ‘Frogs,’ of course), and there have only been a few posts!

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      1. Yeah, poor old Ray…I don’t know what happened after the 1950s, but he sure cranked out a few cheeseball films in the ’60s and ’70s, including ‘X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes’, which I’ve already reviewed, and of course ‘Frogs’, which I haven’t reviewed yet. I’d like to think he maybe wasn’t getting as many A-list offers as he used to, and enjoyed making these schlock horror films.

        And I’d say yes, grab some of those Midnite Movies sets, especially if they’re just six bucks; they’re a lot of fun, and the quality of the prints are actually quite superb!

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