Category Archives: Universal Horror

The Monolith Monsters (1957)

MonolithMonstersPosterIn the desert town of San Angelo, the local geologist (Ben) meets up with Martin Cochrane, the editor of the local paper. Marty is pissing and moaning about how he doesn’t belong in the desert and that the sleepy little town of San Angelo has no need for a newspaper because nothing ever happens, though that crazy black rock Ben just brought back from the desert looks interesting, but it’s probably nothing, because nothing ever happens in this crappy little sleepy desert town! Continue reading

The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957)

IncredibleShrinkingManPosterIt all starts like something out of the hit TV show, TV’s Bloopers and Atomic Practical Jokes: Scott has taken his brother’s boat out for a cruise with his wife. What he doesn’t know though is that while she’s below deck to get more brew, we’ve gone ahead and detonated an atomic weapon just off the starboard side of Scott’s boat. Any minute now, Scott and his boat will float right through the mysterious haze and we bet he’ll be dumb enough to stand around gawking. Let’s see what happens! Continue reading

Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1953)

ACMeetDrJekyllCoverThe least believable thing in this movie is that Scotland Yard would ever hire Abbott and Costello to be bobbies in some kind of pilot program testing out how well Americans do in British law enforcement. I’m not sure what the point of this program was or even how Bud and Lou (Slim and Tubby respectively) got selected for this gig, but this dopey project is just the excuse we need to get our boys overseas so that they can mix it up with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Continue reading

Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy (1955)

A&C Meet the Mummy PosterBy 1955 Abbott and Costello had met just about every monster Universal had to offer. The only one that had escaped their withering satire was the Mummy. Of course by the end of the Kharis films in 1944, many probably already believed that the Mummy was a joke. No matter though as Universal cranked out one last gasp in the Abbott and Costello meet the Monster of the Week oeuvre. This one looked chintzy and the gags were more rickety than ever, though the film was not without its amusing moments (almost exclusively provided by Costello). Continue reading

Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man (1951)

A&C Meet the Invisible Man Poster 2I’m sure all of you remember the very first Invisible Man sequel, The Invisible Man Returns. That movie featured a slightly prissy owner of a mine who is wrongly accused of murdering his brother. The accused has a doctor at the mine shoot him up with some invisible juice so that he can be free to roam around looking for the “real killers.” While he does this, he also has to hurry up and get it done before the drug makes him crazy. I rehash all this because Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man rehashes all this. Continue reading

Monster on the Campus (1958)

MonsterOnTheCampusPosterThis movie about a big, dead, smelly fish has the kind of pedigree that would make you think it was one of those big, dead, smelly fish movies from the 1950s that was really good. Jack Arnold (The Incredible Shrinking Man) directed from a script by Daniel Duncan who also scripted The Time Machine. And Joanna Moore is the female lead. She was Tatum O’Neal’s mother!

Instead of an interesting rampaging monster epic though, you have a movie hampered by its silly premise. Even worse, the monster hardly rampaged at all, making only a few off screen appearances until the very end when a guy in caveman make up starting running around the woods, chucking axes at park rangers and causing pretty gals to faint dead away. Continue reading

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)

A&C Meet Frankenstein PosterHaving ridden the success of their monster films for somewhere in the neighborhood of 15 years, by 1948 Universal had gone through about all the permutations of monsters battling one another they could think of. In an effort to suck even more money out of these played out ideas, they decided to insert their monsters into a comedy starring Abbott and Costello. The first of what turned out to be an ongoing series of these horrorific comedies is Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein and it is by far and away the best and funniest of the series. Continue reading

Tarantula (1955)

Tarantula PosterThis is the very best of all the giant tarantula movies. Where the pretenders rely on cheap gimmicks, overexposed spiders, and dippy teens, Tarantula treats its subject matter with a serious, adult viewpoint. Which is good since I might have otherwise thought the scheme by the mad doctor to help feed Earth’s exploding population by developing a nutrient that grows things to super size was executed only in a fashion that would benefit a cheesy 1950s horror movie. Continue reading

The Mole People (1956)

MolePeoplePosterFirst time director Virgil Vogel mixes up traditional 1950s monsters with one of those lost civilizations populated by rulers and priests in cheap looking robes and stringy kung fu beards from 1930s cliffhangers like Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon and ends up with a painlessly stupid effort highlighted by people getting pulled down through what looks like kitty litter by stuntmen in bump-ridden bug-eyed masks.

Jud (Leave it to Beaver‘s Hugh Beaumont) and Roger (genre vet John Agar of Tarantula among others) are doing some archeology at a site in Asia and discover stone tablets that have all sorts of back story about Sumerians and how they were flooded and had to take an ark to some place not so wet. Continue reading