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Welcome to William Schoell's GREAT OLD MOVIES blog. Feel free to leave a comment regardless of the date the review was posted -- I read 'em all. Or if you prefer -- and especially if you have any questions directly for me -- email me at tawses67424@mypacks.net and I'll get back to you as soon as I can. Click on a label link (labels can be found at the bottom of each post) to find other movies from that year, the star, that director or genre and so on. Or enter a title, director, genre, star or supporting player in the small Blogger "search blog" box at the far left up above and click search blog. [NOTE: While this blog mostly reviews films -- and TV shows -- that are at least twenty-five years old, we do cover films up until the present day.] HAVE FUN AND THANKS FOR DROPPING BY. William.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

THE GIANT BEHEMOTH


THE GIANT BEHEMOTH (1959). Director: Eugene Lourie.

"And the Lord said: Behold now -- The Behemoth."

Fisherman Tom Trevethan (Henri Vidon) intends to go to town to show off his big catch of white fish to the other villagers. "He'll be as drunk as a Lord," says his daughter Jean (Leigh Madison). But poor Tom doesn't get drunk so much as deep fried by "white hot fire" radiating from something that came out of the sea. "Behemoth!" he intones dramatically before expiring. Steve Karnes (Gene Evans) knows that there's something deadly out there in the ocean, something that absorbed radiation and became mutated. There's a lot of suspense built up over what this strange creature can be, therefore it's a bit of a surprise when it merely turns out to be another revivified dinosaur, an electric "paliosaurus" that can emit deadly radioactive waves that burn people to a crisp. Karnes and Professor Bickford (Andre Morrell) do their best to track down and destroy the creature, but not before it attacks a ferry and then stampedes through London [courtesy of more than acceptable stop-motion effects work by Willis (King Kong) O'Brien.] Jack MacGowran, who played a director in The Exorcist, is Dr. Sampson, a somewhat vague if lovable paleontologist. Edwin Astley's music is a great plus. The movie is sort of thrown together, cheap and tacky, but somehow it's also well-acted, disquieting and effective. Lourie also directed The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms and Gorgo. NOTE: For more info on this film and many others like it, read Creature Features: Nature Turned Nasty in the Movies.

Verdict: Watch out for those big feet! **1/2.

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