Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Creature Features: Nature Turned Nasty in the Movies


Written by William Schoell
Published by McFarland Publishing

I gave this great book a shout out on Hauntcast a few months ago, and thought it was worth highlighting it again. I am a huge fan of the "animals gone wild" flicks, which can be a lot of fun.

Here's the publisher's description:

This work offers a critical, colorful and informative examination of different types of monster movies, spanning the silent period to today. Chapter One focuses on dragons, dinosaurs, and other scaly giants from films like 1953’s The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, an impressive stop-motion production that ushered in a new era of atomic-spawned monster films. Chapter Two examines “big bug” flicks, beginning with 1954’s giant ant–infested Them. Chapter Three focuses on ordinary animals grown to improbable proportions through scientific or sinister experimentation, such as the huge octopus in 1955’s It Came from Beneath the Sea. Chapters Four, Five, and Six look at films in which nature goes berserk, and otherwise innocuous animals flock, swarm, hop or run about on a menacingly massive scale, including 1963’s The Birds and 1972’s Frogs. Finally, Chapter Seven focuses on films featuring beasts that defy easy definition, such as 1958’s The Blob and Fiend Without a Face.

Definitely a great resource and a lot of fun to read.

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