Sunday, August 10, 2008

MONOLITH MONSTERS / Universal - 1957 / Music by Gertz, Mancini + Stein

Again, we have another Universal movie making the Sunday Classics post! They seemed to have whatever it took to make a superior monster movie, but, basically, they had larger budgets. For example, the look of the spider in TARANTULA is totally superior to any other blue screen effects at the time, including that of Mr. BIG himself! The giant crystals in MONOLITH MONSTERS that grow and tumble to the ground, crushing everything in their way, are considered some of the very finest special effects in the history of film!!

When rocks from outer space hit the Earth, bad things can happen!!

Give a listen to the 'monsterous' intro and theme and reference to Bakersfield!.. And, again, the music by Irving Gertz, Henry Mancini and Herman Stein is uncredited.

UI always came up with great title cards, this copy is a little dark.

So, if you want some drama, bring in the child! Here's Linda Scheley in her only film role, as Ginny Simpson, the little girl who washes the rock and gets infected with a strange disease, where, she's starts turning into stone! Water activates the things.

Grant Williams had a strange career. He also did THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN and LEECH WOMAN for Universal, then, a few years later he's working for Al Adamson in the wacked-out BRAIN OF BLOOD (actually part of the Filipino 'Blood' series, go figure!!). That's Lola Albright, there, next to Grant. Grant's partner is already dead from turning into stone. The guy falls over and breaks apart!.. YOW!!

Frankly, the country Sheriff and Doctor are fairly baffled!..

...So, in the '50s, you put children in an iron lung when in doubt, something quite horrifying in itself!

Yeah! That's what I said, BIG ROCKS!

I actually saw this one at the theater when it came out! This part here is great.

They finally figure out that salt destroys the things, so, Grant wants to blow up the dam and wash a salt deposit into the path of the encroaching monstrocities! But, how do you sell logic to the people running the show?!

Here's the dam just before they blow it up. Thank God, logic prevails! Look at that matte painting back there!

Okay, now, to see if its gonna work!.. If not, Grant has to pay for the damages!!.. OUCH!


Oh, yeah, not to forget! Our pal Les Tremayne is in the movie, he plays the newspaper owner.

What do you know, it works!!! And, little Ginny pulls through just fine! Another happy ending...


Greg Goodsell said...

This movie is a trip! I hear if you watch closely, that a lot of the people are handling the rocks throughout the movie and only the little girl starts turning into stone .......

Lacey said...

This was a fun film I saw on a Navy Base, Saturday morning (kid free time) many, many years ago. I finally saw it again late night on an LA station, back when they showed movies all night , and not just ads for kitchen tools.

My favorite line is when the teacher, upon hearing about Ginny, says, "oh, not her. She is one of the good students."

What, like you wanted it to happen to that brat Tommy instead???

Great site and keep up the good work.

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