Reptilicus (1961)

ReptilicusPosterYou never fully appreciate how great those Godzilla movies are until you witness what happens when someone who isn’t Japanese tries his hand at it. Just when you thought that Gorgo was the worst European effort to duplicate the giant monster rampaging across a city goodness that served all of Godzilla’s movies so well, comes this entry from Denmark.

Oh Gorgo, if only you were here to lumber through town and trample the decorative fountains and palace of the Danish king! If only there was some unscrupulous circus promoter that chained you up, so that you could break free and take a big dump on their art museums. If only this movie was about a guy in a bad rubber suit, instead of an amateurishly made and animated model terrorizing all the opium dens and porn producers that make up most of downtown Copenhagen!

A copper drilling operation in Lapland discovers a chunk of prehistoric tail in the ice. Since it was frozen for seventy million years, this tail is perfectly preserved. Not only that, but it is the tail of a reptile and not a mammal!

This for some reason was a big deal, but I was never impressed by that. To me, I would’ve have been just as impressed if it had been a giant mammal or giant fish or one of those really big bugs that always try to take over desert towns. These giant reptiles already had their chance to rule the Earth millions of years ago and we all know how that turned out!

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They keep it in this cooler at their lab and set about studying. They also hire a guy named Petersen to keep an eye on things. I guess he’s the Danish equivalent of a security guard because he’s got an I.Q. of 70 and wears brand new bib overalls, giving him that “lumbering molester” look so many aspire to.

He walks around checking gauges with a flashlight even though every light in the lab is on, makes wild facial gesticulations, and does stupid stuff like sticking his hand into the electric eel tank.

One of the old coots tells Petersen that he’ll be working all night, so not to bother checking on that tail because Old Coot will keep an eye on that tail. Petersen leaves and Old Coot promptly dozes off for the next 45 hours, accidentally not closing the door all the way.

When Old Coot’s boss arrives, he finds out that Old Coot let the dang tail thaw out and now it’s all ruined. Except for the fact that it’s regenerating itself.

I don’t know if they ever bothered to try and explain this, though I do recall someone babbling about how starfish can regenerate themselves as well as flatworms as if that somehow explains how a chunk of tail frozen in the ice for millions of years can be thawed out and grow into a giant green-gunk spewing monster.

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If this Reptilicus guy was so awesome, how come he didn’t survive, except all frozen in the ice? Where have your regeneration powers been for the last seventy million years, big guy?

As this thing was regenerating, I was thinking that maybe they should be taking precautions against what would happen once this thing gets full grown. I had my doubts that the thing would be housebroken or anything once it finally woke up.

To their credit, someone at the lab suggested that maybe they should build a bigger tank, but the next thing you know Reptilicus is on the loose and the absolute worst special effects you have ever seen are unleashed on Copenhagen.

Just how bad are the effects in this one? Well, there’s one scene where Reptilicus is eating someone and what we see is a paper cut-out of a person going into this thing’s mouth. It was like something out of Monty Python. But funny.

I also couldn’t understand how the military geniuses could lose track of Reptilicus periodically. Uh, he’s a ninety-foot long sea serpent that is stomping a mudhole in your town and walking it dry. I don’t think he’s engaging in any deep cover operations here.

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The remainder of the film involves chintzy models getting damaged by an even chintzier monster until someone fires a bazooka with some sleeping drug in the rocket into Reptilicus’ mouth causing him to take a nap in the middle of the street.

Truly a horrifying experience in every sense of the word. I’m not sure what these Danish dopes were up to when they decided to shoot this thing, but if it was to get some free publicity for their only city, mission accomplished!

Thanks for warning me off of visiting your city full of dimwitted scientists, sweaty generals, and pathetically half-hearted monsters. They even stop the movie for about two minutes in the middle so that the general and one of the broads can drive around Copenhagen pointing out all the sights to him, like this was some kind of Chamber of Commerce travel video. I used it to build up a wish list of places I wish that Reptilicus would barf his green goo all over.

Even if you like your monster booty calls to involve the destruction of famous (or in this case famous to Danes only) landmarks, I would advise in the strongest terms to stay away from this piece of tail.

© 2013 MonsterHunter

2 thoughts on “Reptilicus (1961)

  1. Patrick

    Hello i have see this movie .. iam from denmark and mabye you dont think what year its from its from 1962 so special effects was not so good

    Reply

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