|Genre: Classics, Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense|
Directed By: Tito Davison
Written By: William Douglas Lansford
In Theaters: 30 April 1969 Wide
On Disc/Streaming: 26 June 2007
Runtime: 98 minutes
Studio: Warner Home Video
Lana Turner as Adriana Roman
George Chakiris as Johnny Allen
Richard Egan as Frederick Lansdale
Daniel O’Herlihy as Charles Winthrop
Karin Mossberg as Lisa Winthrop
Pamela Rodgers as Bibi
Carlos East as Lalo
Augusto Benedico as Dr. Lorenz
Victor Junco as Delacroix
Norma Herrera as Stella
Pedro Galván as University Dean
Regina Torne as Queen Bee
“The Big Cube” is a 1969 American thriller film directed by Tito Davison and starring Lana Turner, Karin Mossberg, George Chakiris, Daniel O’Herlihy and Richard Egan; it was one of Lana Turner’s last movies.
It is notable for its aggressive portrayal of LSD use and the 1960s youth counterculture as vicious evils.
“The Big Cube” of the title is slang for a sugar cube dipped in LSD, which is omnipresent throughout the movie.
Adriana Roman (Lana Turner) is a famous actress who is retiring from the stage to marry wealthy Charles Winthrop (Dan O’Herlihy), a situation that displeases Winthrop’s daughter Lisa.
While hanging out at a nightclub called “Le Trip,” Lisa is shown the bizarre effects that LSD-laced sugar cubes can have when added to a drink.
She also meets Johnny Allen, a drug dealer who, once he learns that Lisa comes from money, is anxious to marry her.
While Adriana and Winthrop are away, Lisa and Johnny hold a wild drug and sex party at her home.
When her father walks in on it, he forbids Lisa’s marriage.
Soon thereafter, Winthrop drowns at sea, but Adriana follows his orders that Lisa will be disinherited if she marries Johnny.
The two plot their revenge by lacing Adriana’s sleeping pills with LSD, to the point that she goes mad and is committed to an asylum. Lisa and Johnny marry, but when Johnny takes Lisa’s best friend to bed, Lisa regrets her actions. She tells Frederick Lansdale, a playwright friend of her stepmother’s, what she has done. He has the notion of writing a play based on Adriana’s experiences, and convincing Adriana to play the lead role.
Amazingly, going through this experience cures Adriana – just as Lansdale hoped it would.
Lana Turner plays Adriana Roman.
It must have been the location shoot in Acapulco that persuaded Lana Turner to make “The Big Cube” in May and June of 1968. Released in 1969, the movie was supposed to reflect that generation and its nightlife. It’s an exaggerated version of youth culture in that time. They tried so hard to make the dialogue “hip”, using streams of slang, that it doesn’t ring true. The costumes aren’t quite right either. Only the hair is perfectly accurate. Lana played it as the campy role that it was and she looks beautiful in her Travilla gowns.
Commercially the “Big Cube” did very well south of the border of the USA, but it was poorly distributed in the USA itself.
Second poster courtesy of Shockcinema Magazine
Lana Turner did a lot of movies. She really loved being a moviestar.
Here are the most important films in which she starred. Just click the links for more info, photos and videos.
20 April 1937: A Star Is Born
9 Oct. 1937: They Won’t Forget
24 Oct. 1937: The Great Garrick
1 Jan. 1938: The Adventures of Marco Polo
22 July 1938: Love Finds Andy Hardy
12 Aug. 1938: Rich Man, Poor Girl
9 Dec. 1938: Dramatic School
28 April 1939: Calling Dr. Kildare
18 Aug. 1939: These Glamour Girls
29 Sept. 1939: Dancing Co-Ed
19 April 1940: Two Girls on Broadway
19 July 1940: We Who Are Young
25 April 1941: Ziegfeld Girl
12 Aug. 1941: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
2 Oct. 1941: Honky Tonk
18 Febr. 1942: Johnny Eager
27 Aug. 1942: Somewhere I’ll Find You
1 April 1943: Slightly Dangerous
19 Aug. 1943: Du Barry Was A Lady
13 Nov. 1943: The Youngest Profession
23 Aug. 1944: Marriage Is a Private Affair
8 March 1945: Keep Your Powder Dry
1 Oct. 1945: Week-End At The Waldorf
2 May 1946: The Postman Always Rings Twice
5 Nov. 1947 : Green Dolphin Street
1 Nov. 1947: Cass Timberlane
29 April 1948: Homecoming
20 Oct. 1948: The Three Musketeers
1 Sept. 1950: A Life Of Her Own
2 March 1951: Mr. Imperium
5 Sept. 1952: The Merry Widow
25 Dec. 1952: The Bad And The Beautiful
25 Aug. 1953: Latin Lovers
1 May 1954: Flame And The Flesh
7 Sept. 1954: Betrayed
13 May 1955: The Prodigal
4 June 1955: Sea Chase
14 Dec. 1955: The Rains Of Ranchipur
12 Jan. 1956: Diane
13 Dec. 1957: Peyton Place
30 Jan. 1958: The Lady Takes A Flyer
2 May 1958: Another Time, Another Place
30 April 1959: Imitation Of Life
23 June 1960: Portrait In Black
19 July 1961: By Love Possessed
2 Nov. 1961: Bachelor In Paradise
25 Dec. 1962: Who’s Got The Action?
24 Febr. 1965: Love Has Many Faces
27 April 1966: Madame X
30 April 1969: The Big Cube
7 Nov. 1974: Persecution
27 Oct. 1976: Bittersweet Love
31 Oct. 1980: Witches Brew
21 May 1982: Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid
Sources: Wikipedia, IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes, Lana’s biography “Lana, the Lady, The Legend, The Truth“, “The Films Of Lana Turner” by Lou Valentino and “Lana Turner, The Memories, The Myths and The Movies” by Cheryl Crane.