|NIGHT OF THE BLOOD BEAST
|Copyright 1958 Balboa Productions
| Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 28 November 2002.
- John - Test pilot. First he is dead (sorta), then alive, and then pregnant (long story). Finally, he commits hari-kari.
- Julie - As a doctor, she is astounded by John's pregnancy. As his fiancee, she is less than enthused.
- Steve - He is a born leader. If he does not understand something, he throws molotov cocktails at it.
- Dave - The angry radio operator and rocket designer.
- Donna - She is the team's photographer. Beyond that, she does not seem to have any useful function.
- Dr. Wyman - The scientific genius of the group. Half of his head is eaten, like a ripe peach. That is what you get for studying hard in school, a tasty noggin.
- The Blood Beast - Survivor of a race that nearly destroyed itself. The creature looks like a giant parrot with advanced skin cancer. Polly want a melanoma? Fricasseed.
|The X-100 is returning home after kissing the cheek of outer space, but something goes wrong. John, the test pilot, struggles to control the craft as it plummets toward Earth. Matters are not helped by him deploying the drag chute while still high in the atmosphere (somebody forgot to explain how air resistance works to the goon). As the scene fades out, the audience is pretty certain that John will become one with the landscape.
Dave and Donna rush to the crash site. Amazingly, the capsule is intact and a small hole in the side reveals John's corpse, also in one piece. I can live with the idea that the X-100 was made of an alloy so strong as to retain its shape (I can ignore common sense with them best of them). The problem is the human body's reaction to extreme deceleration. One thousand miles an hour to zero in such a short distance means that John would look like cranberry sauce. Dave should have stuck his head in the hole to take a look and said, "Ewwwwwwww!" Anyway, the radio man calls the other searchers and tells them the news. The time allotted to Julie is inhumanely brief, because Dr. Wyman tells her to get over it.
While the two humans are distracted, something moves near the ship. They do notice the change, but chalk up the hole becoming larger with the ship sinking into the ground. Another oddity rears its head: John's body is not displaying any rigor mortis and the temperature is normal. Determined to study this mystery and still callous to Julie's anguish, the dead man is unceremoniously tossed into the back of a farm truck for transport back to the base. They do not even cover him up with a blanket!
The base is located away from Cape Canaveral, in the mountainous area of Florida. Yes, mountains. You read me right. In case I was mistaken, I typed "Florida Mountains" into Google. The Florida Mountains are in New Mexico (the heck?) and the other good set of references was for a book: Mountains of Florida - The Art of Dirt.
Suffice to say, every glimpse of the skyline in this movie is instant chuckles.
The medical experts begin studying the cadaver while Dave tries to contact the Cape. He is unsuccessful and goes outside to check the equipment. There, in the gloom, something knocks the radio operator down. He does fire off several shots, which bring the others running. The alarmed scientists hear the unknown menace smashing its way into the laboratory. By the time the humans reenter the building, whatever it was is gone.
Watches are posted, but the vigilance is for naught. The creature reenters the facility in the dead of night and eats half of Wyman's head (killing the fellow, predictably). To complicate matters further, John wakes up from being dead. Strange puncture wounds mar his flesh, but the dead guy is up. He is also royally confused and exhausted; John faints and his head comes to rest between Julie's yams.
The pilot wakes up and talks briefly with the others before a startling discovery is made via the fluoroscope - John is filled with alien babies! The title monster bursts into the room, only to be met with gunfire and a hurled oil lamp. It quickly flees before the excitable people can roast it alive. John complains bitterly about the rampant violence, saying that the creature is not evil. He then faints. The two men and Donna go hunting for the wounded Blood Beast; despite a close call, their search is unsuccessful.
John continues to insist that the alien is not evil (uh, it ate Wyman's head, you boob). The apparent link between the reanimated man and the mysterious creature is not lost on the others. Several shots convey a palpable feeling of suspicion. Steve and Dave do not trust their old companion, not one bit; they even appear hostile. The problem is compounded by John walking around without his shirt on. He looks like he might be in his second trimester.
Eventually, John offers to lead his associates to meet with the monster. The two men wisely decided to bring along a couple of canning jars, filled with a flammable liquid (kerosene, gasoline, etc.) and their very pistols. Of all things, once they get to Bronson Caverns (yeah, that is in Florida too), the pilgrims are treated to another surprise. The Blood Beast can talk now! Mr. Mom suddenly realizes that the creature is only using him as an incubator. He stabs himself in the ovary. Steve and Dave take care of burning the monster to death.
Did John make the right decision or was it the hormones talking?
Oh boy, this movie is a serious turkey (as if you could not already tell that). There are some interesting ideas, like a man impregnated with alien babies, the Blood Beast consuming Wyman's brain to gain understanding, and the unaffected humans paranoid treatment of John. Recommended for any fans of 1950's horror and science fiction films. They should already have the patience needed to continue watching when the pace drops off.
|Things I Learned From This Movie:|| |
- Blonde women are hard to upset, even when faced with the mutilated body of their fiancee.
- Dead men do not have problems with high blood pressure.
- Spending time as a corpse does wonders for your power of deduction.
- If something is on fire, beat it with a pillow until the flames are extinguished.
- Flare guns are the most powerful small arms weapon known to man.
- Tanks are little more than iron skillets with tracks.
- Eating brains is a form of photosynthesis.
- 3 mins - The thrusters are still on? Turning those off might have helped.
- 10 mins - Translation: "I need to slice him like a baked ham."
- 13 mins - He crash landed. Contusions, lacerations, and punctures are to be expected.
- 33 mins - Maybe nobody has explained this, but guys do not get pregnant.
- 40 mins - RANDOM ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST A SPACE CAPSULE!
- 54 mins - "There is nothing to fear." Except for a brain munching monster from outer space. You stupid...uh...stupid!
- 59 mins - Ohhhh! The baby is kicking!
- Julie: "That's what your blood look likes now. Normal in every respect. Four hours ago it was populated with alien anamorphic cell structures."
- Dave: "Why should we give it a chance? It's already committed murder, it's done I don't know what to you, and it's attacked Donna."
| ||Audio clips in wav format||SOUNDS||Starving actors speak out|| |
||Dave: "John Corcoran was the first man to be sent up in a satellite and ejected back to Earth. Only, he was supposed to come back alive."
||Julie: "Blood pressure one-twenty over eighty. Normal for a living man." |
Wyman: "That's impossible, doctor. You must have made a mistake."
Julie: "But, doctor, I checked it twice."
||John: "Why does it have to be killed? Why are we always so quick to destroy? It's an alien. It's the first of its kind to come to the Earth." |
Steve: "John, you know what its done to you: breeding its young in your body. You saw what it did to Dr. Wyman. Isn't that reason enough? It has to be killed!"
||The Blood Beast: "Now I am able to speak. By assimilation, a form of photosynthesis, I have been able to incorporate certain of Dr. Wyman's functional processes."
| ||Click for a larger image||IMAGES||Scenes from the movie|| |
| ||Watch a scene||VIDEO||MPEG video files|| |
|The creature grabbed Donna while the two men were investigating the capsule. Now it escapes from them by using its patented "Supafly" drop. |
All I can think about is the stuntman, inside that suit, rolling downhill.
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