BADass SINema Unearthed - Blu-ray Review

The Monolith Monsters (1957) - Blu-ray Review

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The Monolith Monsters (1957)

It is an invasion that never ends! 

From Shout! and Scream Factory, The Monolith Monsters arrives to once again stomp out all those poor souls unfortunate enough to run into (or over) strange, black fragments of meteors that have fallen to earth.  Once exposed to water, these fragments do some pretty cool things . . . like get really big and grow nasty-looking tails. 

"The Monolith Monsters arrives to once again stomp out all those poor souls unfortunate enough to run into (or over) strange, black fragments of meteors that have fallen to earth"


But, for one small desert town, these fragments are far from cool.  They are deadly . . . and widespread.  Ordinary aggregates?  Geologist Ben Gilbert (Phil Harvey) thinks not and so he takes one of the fragments to his office where he and the local newspaper publisher Martin Cochrane (Les Tremayne) wax poetically about its unlikely properties.  They joke that there is nothing new under the sun.

Of course, they are wrong.  And it will be Dave Miller (Grant Williams) and his discovery of a rock-hard corpse who tells them that there is definitely something strange about this particular meteorite that broke wide and far over Southern California.

Directed by John Sherwood and written by Norman Jolley and Robert M. Fresco, The Monolith Monsters features strong special effects from Clifford Stine, who previously blew minds (in a visual sense) with his extraordinary work in The Incredible Shrinking Man, The Mole People, and, as cinematographer, It Came From Outer Space.  Here, he turns men into solid states of mass as a black substance creeps and crawls across the desert floor. 

With no blast and no signs of an explosion, The Monolith Monsters, with a memorable introduction narrated by THE Paul Frees (Boris Badenov in The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show) has an interesting premise that it never truly capitalizes on.  Sure, it is NEVER frightening, but the film does manage to find shock in its rock schlock.  And, thanks to the work of Scream Factory, the film looks better than it ever has before.

What will the tourists think of all these deadly rocks?  God forbid they ever pick up on of these rocks as a souvenir.  The spread of these rocks from space could be astronomical. The Monolith Monsters (1957)

Throughout the 77-minutes of The Monolith Monsters, the acting is strictly B-matinee level and, with a low-key styled approach to the direction, the movie comes across as a quiet flick, punctuated only a couple of times with creepy crawly nighttime explorations.  The farmhouse engulfed in black rocks is especially memorable, especially when the unexplained rocks leave a little girl, Ginny (Linda Scheley) traumatized by its turn-to-stone lasting effects upon her parents. Turns out that her recovery is essential to figuring out to best deal with these space invaders!

Shock can be a merciful thing.  Find out why in The Monolith Monsters, now available on blu-ray thanks to Scream Factory.

3/5 beers

The Monolith Monsters (1957)

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Scream Factory
Available on Blu-ray
- June 18, 2019
Screen Formats: 1.85:1 and 2.00:1
Subtitles
: English SDH
Audio:
English: 1.0 DTS-HD MA track
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Presented in two aspect ratios (1.85:1 and 2.00:1), Shout! Factory presents The Monolith Monsters on blu-ray with fine results.  The black-and-white photography is ripe with details and depth, highlighting the underground scope of the production.  There are lots of sumptuous looks at the desert.  Interiors are solid, too, with lots of strong details.  The cast and their faces are perfectly captured by the black and white photography; lines and imperfections add great character to the story, too.  The sound is restored in a strong English 1.0 DTS-HD MA track.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • Film Historian/Author Tom Weaver and Film Music Historian David Schecter provide one commentary.  Another, recorded by Film Historian Mark Jancovich, is brand-new to this release.

Special Features:

Fans get a theatrical trailer and a still gallery.

  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Still Gallery

Blu-ray Rating:

  Movie 4/5 stars
  Video  4/5 stars
  Audio 4/5 stars
  Extras 2/5 stars

Overall Blu-ray Experience

4/5 stars

The Monolith Monsters (1957)

MPAA Rating: Unrated.
Runtime:
77 mins
Director
: John Sherwood
Writer:
Norman Jolley, Robert M. Fresco
Cast:
Grant Williams, Lola Albright, Les Tremayne
Genre
: Horror
Tagline:
Now The Amazing Monolith Monsters Reveal Powers Shocking Beyond Belief!
Memorable Movie Quote: "Those old bones from our attic turned out to be from his wife."
Theatrical Distributor:
International Film Marketing
Official Site:
Release Date:
October 23, 1987
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
April 23, 1987
Synopsis: Dave, if it is a meteorite, chances are it's been hurtling around our universe for a good many centuries. The answer to your question lies buried in those centuries. We'll just have to dig it out.

The Monolith Monsters (1957)

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