Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Terrifying Tuesdays: Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954)

Not only is today a Terrifying Tuesday, it is also Valentine's Day!  An unfortunate combination, you say?  Why, surely you jest -- some of the most heartbreaking love stories are horror movies!  Take, for example, the title creature's fatal attraction to Fay Wray in "King Kong" (1933).  Or how about the star-crossed lovers in "The Mummy" (1932), doomed to be separated for all eternity.  And don't forget the tragic infatuation of an unhappy wife with her murderously philandering husband in "Attack of the 50 Foot Woman" (1958).  Then there is Lon Chaney Jr.'s Larry Talbot in "The Wolf Man"(1941), whose budding romance with Evelyn Ankers' character suffers an early demise thanks to a curse he did not even deserve.  (But please let's not discuss the sappy "Twilight Saga" here -- save that for someone else's blog!)

My choice for the day, though, has to be "The Creature from the Black Lagoon" (1954), with its variation on the classic doomed love story.  Creature meets girl, creature becomes enamored of girl, girl rejects creature, creature attempts to claim girl as his own, and ultimately tragedy strikes creature.  Break out the tissues, everyone, because this is a real tearjerker (although keep in mind that this is the opinion of someone who shed tears for King Kong at the end of that movie).

The action takes place in the depths of the Amazonian jungle.  The cast of characters includes noble scientist Dr. David Reed (Richard Carlson), arrogant scientist Dr. Mark Williams (Richard Denning), Kay Lawrence (Julie Adams) as everyone's love interest, two uncredited actors as the Creature (Ricou Browning and Ben Chapman as aquatic and terrestrial versions, respectively), and various others as potential monster fodder.  I'm sure I don't even have to tell you who wins the girl in the end!  You can watch the trailer here.

If you enjoy both a good love story and an old-fashioned horror movie, then snuggle up with your sweetie today and watch this movie as a Valentine's Day treat!

Interesting Fact:  There are so many interesting facts associated with this movie!  The physical appearance of the Creature was modeled after the Academy Award's Oscar.  Director Ingmar Bergman watched this movie every year on his birthday.  The movie was originally produced in 3-D.  Actor Richard Denning also starred in the giant bug movie "The Black Scorpion" (1957), and was married to horror movie queen Evelyn Ankers (see above).  Actor Richard Carlson starred in a number of science fiction and horror movies, including "It Came from Outer Space" (1953).  Need I go on?

Gore Guide (0=none to 5=extreme): 0

From Monster Awareness Month

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