55 Years of Body Snatching

The original version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers was released 55 years ago today in 1956. It’s a B-quality movie that’s creepy and fun. Fall asleep and your body is cloned in a big slimy alien pod outside your bedroom window or down in the basement. Then you’re dead and replaced by a clone with no emotion. “Come on and join us.” No, run! I saw “The Invasion of

I enjoyed “The Fly” more than “The Fly”

I recently saw the original 1958 version of The Fly for the first time and enjoyed it as a top-notch B-movie. Then I tried to watch David Cronenberg’s 1986 remake and lost interest after Jeff Goldblum’s face began to fill with pus. Cronenberg’s propensity for the gruesome does nothing for me. Even though the original begins with a scientist found dead under a giant printing press that has squooshed his

“King Kong” Kicks Ass

I’m talking about the original 1933 version of King Kong. It is a great movie and a hell of lot more violent and gruesome than I ever thought. It must have shocked and scared the crap out of audiences in 1933. I never realized what an incredible movie it is. The stop-motion special effects are executed with style and drama that are so expressive, “the beast” comes across as a

The Creature from the Black Lagoon (Trilogy)

I’ve been watching a lot of B-movies lately. The acting is wooden, the production values are dated, but the filmmakers made the most of what little they had. The low budgets forced them to get innovative. Watching B-movies isn’t a bad way to learn about film. There’s no subtlety to any of the elements, the editing, the narrative, the music, the acting — so it’s much easier to see what

Forbidden Planet ! ! !

Forbidden Planet is the ultimate “sci-fi” B-movie. When one of the opening credits reads, “Electronic Tonalities by Louis and Bebe Barron,” you know it’s going to be a fun ride. Pick any five minutes from Forbidden Planet and you’ll see evidence of its influence on Star Wars, Star Trek and even Alien. It’s a total goofball movie full of blatant chauvinism and cheesy (yet spectacular) special effects and aliens that