Movie Review: Monster from Green Hell

(1957)
Director Kenneth G. Crane
Starring Jim Davis, Robert Griffin, Joel Fluellen, Barbara Turner, Eduardo Ciannelli, Vladimir Sokoloff

I am here today to defend this movie! Yes, it is not the most fast paced, or even well-made film, which includes a lot of walking. I mean, a LOT of walking. But it does have some key elements here that I feel deserves your attention, and is something to be seen and appreciated, if only for one viewing. That is the thing about learning about films. When you learn more and more behind-the-scenes information, as well as about the different people involved, you tend to look at it a little differently. Maybe giving them a little slack for some faults it might have. Just a theory.

First off, we have GIANT WASP MONSTERS! Like a lot of movies from this era where the movie posters promise something that we don’t really get in the actual film, with Monster from Green Hell, we not only get what is promised on the poster, we get it before the first 10 minutes are up!  As a kid, seeing something like a giant wasp head pokes out from behind the bushes and trees and grabs hold of an innocent victim, that would definitely be brought up on the playground the next day at school.

Now while I never saw this on TV as a kid, I did see images of it many times while browsing through different horror & Sci-Fi reference books that I knew I wanted to see it. Plus, being a huge fan of the films that came out in the ‘50s, I am a little more forgiving on things like plot holes, slow pacing, bad acting, or really know storyline, and this film has many of those elements too, but I feel is a little better than most seem to give it credit for.

The story is about some test rockets with some animals and insects that are shot out in space to see how they deal with what is out there, I’m guessing radiation, for a very limited about of time. But when one of the rockets get lost, they just shrug it off and move on, not even too worried about looking for it or to see if did any damage where it landed. Then six months later, they hear of reports of strange attacks and “monsters” in Africa, oddly enough in the same area where they think their rocket crashed. They finally decide to go investigate and find that the wasps that were in the rocket have been affected, growing to huge size, either the size of a bus or building, depending on the shot! It is up to our heroes to destroy these creatures before they destroy the world.

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Book Review: Interviews Too Shocking to Print!

interviewstooshockingInterviews Too Shocking to Print!
Published by BearManor Media, 2014. 332 pages.
By Justin Humphreys

Right off the bat, let me say that if you’re expecting a but of unedited and sorid tales of Hollywood that couldn’t be printed before, you will be disappointed. The title of the book refers to the old fashion ballyhoo that B-movies used to use in hopes to draw a crowd. That being said, I think this book should draw the crowd because it is simply a must read for anybody interested in the horror and sci-fi genre and the people behind them.

I have quite a few “interview” books in my library and at least half of them cover the usual suspects in the movie industry. Not saying that is a bad thing, but we tend to read the same stories, as well as the people being covered are ones that we are usually very familiar with. But what Humphreys does with this book is put the spotlight on more than a few names that have made huge strides in the industry, but are names that you don’t typically hear being brought up, which is a damn shame. Thankfully, with this book, hopefully that can change.

Humphreys started interviewing some of these talents at the early age of 15 years of age, so right away it shows his diehard passion for these kind of films. Throughout his career, he befriended a lot of these people in the industry and is now trying to give them the credit they most assuredly deserves. And even if quite a few of them that are covered here have already passed away, learning about them and their work is the best way to keep them alive. And Humphreys has done a wonderful job doing just that.

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