Monday, January 10, 2022

THE MOVIES OF PRODUCER JACK H. HARRIS

It's time to spend a little time with producer Jack H. Harris and his mixed bag of movies he was involved in creating.

First on the list is THE BLOB, by far his crowning achievement when it comes to horror. My dad took me to see it in 1958 when I was ten I was a basket case for years after that, something about blobs really got to me. 

In 1959 Jack produced his next horror classic, 4D MAN, about a scientist that discovers the secret of how to pass through solid objects. Unfortunately there are side effects!

Then in 1960, Jack produced DINOSAURUS!, where two dinosaurs and a caveman are freed from their underwater tombs to bring horror and laughter to a Caribbean island. This is one that Eegah!! and I saw together back in the day.

In 1965, Jack was executive producer for MASTER OF HORROR, an Argentinian movie redubbed in English for the US audience. A woman reads two of Edgar Allan Poe's classic tales, "The Facts In The Case Of  M. Valdemar" and "The Cask Of Amontillado."

And in 1966 Jack writes, directs and produces the super weird UNKISSED BRIDE aka MOTHER GOOSE A GO-GO, starring Tommy Kirk!! Get ready, the story goes like this!.. Ted and Margie are on their honeymoon but Margie's nervous about what comes next and reads Ted nursery rhymes from Mother Goose! Ted faints, so Dr. Marilyn, a psychiatrist, arrives and says that Ted has a "Mother Goose complex!" And, she treats him with an LSD spray!!, causing him to hallucinate and get reality and fairy tales mixed together!! Wow, are you kidding?!! Cool!!

EQUINOX from 1970 will always be one of my favorite strange movies, it's just out there man! The characters are great and the monsters are beyond wild. A David Hewitt collaboration.

In a cheap-o comedy version of the original, Jack brings us BEWARE! THE BLOB aka SON OF BLOB in 1972. Larry Hagman acts in and directs this bomb.

In 1973, Jack is back with this movie John Landis wrote, directed and starred in, SCHLOCK! The story's about the missing link terrorizing a small town but filmed in Chatsworth.

In 1974, Jack hooks up with John Carpenter and Dan O'Bannon (writer of ALIEN) in the futuristic sci-fi comedy, DARK STAR, where the crew of the ship go around blowing up unstable planets!!

In 1978 Jack produced John Carpenter's EYES OF LAURA MARS, a tale about a photographer (Faye Dunaway) who develops the ability to see through the eyes of a killer.

In 1986, Jack hooks up with Fred Olen Ray with STAR SLAMMER, a sexy tale of two space chicks locked up on a prison planet, having to deal with lesbian guards, crazed wardens and big mutant rodents! Actors include Sandy Brooke, Ross Hagen, Aldo Ray and Bobbie Bresee.

In 1988, Jack brings back the scare with a horror remake of the original, THE BLOB. It's like 90 minutes of exhausting terror, still prefer the original.

And then there's this little 'What's Up, Tiger Lily?' style redub redo of the original, where Steve has to face off against a wise-cracking gob of goo, Vaccine. Hard to find one of these, reviewers say it pretty damn funny! Jack was born in 1918 and died in 2017 at age 98, a great guy with a sense of humor.

8 comments:

Edward said...

I'm so confused by MASTERS OF HORROR!

OBRAS MAESTRAS DEL TERROR (1959) was a TV series, with Narciso Ibáñez Menta (A Spanish actor who became a horror star in Argentina!) (And his son directed WHO CAN KILL A CHILD?), which lasted for 3 seasons and featured Poe, The Phantom of the Opera, "The Monkey's Paw," &c.

Somebody apparently took three (of five) Poe adaptations (abandoning "Ligeia" and "Berenice"), and released them theatrically as OBRAS MAESTRAS DEL TERROR (1960), and then somebody threw out one story and released the other two as MASTER OF HORROR (1965), and then someone took the thrown out story, filmed another movie around it, and released it as EDGAR ALLEN POE'S LEGEND OF HORROR (1971) (It has to be good with Poe's name spelled wrong in the title!), around the same time that MASTER OF HORROR was re-released on a double bill with MASTER OF TERROR, which, of course, is actually THE 4-D MAN (1959). Have I got this straight?

I used to have a 45 with radio spots for MASTER OF HORROR/MASTER OF TERROR, with the two masters squabbling!

TABONGA! said...

Hey Edward, yeah, that whole Argentina thing is pretty confusing, but I think you know more about the subject than we do, and we appreciate your interesting comment...

SCB said...

Many years ago I watched an alternate version of the Blob theme on Youtube. It had no lyrics and was totally unlike the silly one done by The Five Blobs. Eventually it was taken down, and I was never able to listen to it again, but it was seriously chilling.

Realm Of Retro said...

Harris had this brilliant promotional for 4D MAN where he
offered 1 million dollars to anyone
who could perform the same acts featured in the movie (like walking through walls).

https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/img/a/AVvXsEiTpZ9AFSR0djvfEiVR56pX_zHRik5evemjlOIPBF7QqRvq6RFn4Qho0qGXBiuNlObo3n0rcglwXIb_1KNYn2TIQ0zAanZMjF8TtiyjJHHyY8yDR4apqHFrSnHeS4d-kLaff_2Be_rHHKYsRUmgzJTa46POMZ3hgk14ueF0A3xtulrVUqhjZTUm8y0X=s873

knobgobbler said...

I love The Blob and Equinox!
But had no clue there was any sort of shared creative folks between them.
Cool!

Grant said...

I don't know if I've ever seen the actor Richard Stahl play a bigger role than he does in BEWARE! THE BLOB. It may not be considered a good movie, but good for him.

Speaking of that, if there's one scene that does deserve to be liked, it's that early one with Godfrey Cambridge.

Realm Of Retro said...

RE: Richard Stahl

After '66 Richard Stahl's career took off like a rocket.
His IMDB is fun to read, lots and lots of TV shows
from mid-60s on up:
https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0821489/

kd said...

I was hatch...er born, in the little Pennsylvania town where THE BLOB (1956) was made. But I happened on the scene a couple of years earlier, so I guess you could say that I "crashed to earth" two years before THE BLOB did. Meh.

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