BADass SINema Unearthed - Blu-ray Review

Monster on the Campus (1958) - Blu-ray Review

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Monster on the Campus (1958)

We all know that college can change a young man.  Most of us revert into sex-starved beasts on the prowl.  Some of us conform to the peer pressure around us.  Regardless of the good or the bad, life on a college campus is often times unplanned, unscripted, and full of primates.  Which makes a film as loopy as Monster on the Campus full of a whole lot of howling mad matinee charm.

Hell, this is a film about Neanderthals AND giant dragonflies.  Coincidences be damned!

"this is a film about Neanderthals AND giant dragonflies.  Coincidences be damned!"

Jack Arnold. You might not know the name, but you sure do know his films.  From It Came from Outer Space (1953), Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), Tarantula (1955), and The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957), to The Space Children (1958), perhaps no other director is responsible for such far out AND memorable science fiction as Arnold is. 

Arnold’s super-serious take on I Was a Teenage Werewolf might not be his best film, but Monster on the Campus sure is a lot of brainless, B-movie fun.  And now it arrives on HD! {googleads}

Written by David Duncan (Sangaree, Fantastic Voyage), Monster of the Campus is hokey matinee-styled yarn concerning some pretty bunk science in which Dr. Donald Blake (Arthur Franz), a university science professor (whose first lines are damned hilarious about women being perfect when they are helpless and silent), is accidentally cut by the teeth of a partially-thawed coelacanth he has received that day.  Little does he know that the specimen has been exposed to some gamma rays.

And so, moments later, the professor passes out.  He is helpless to stop the change that is going to transform him into an ape-like man with super strong abilities that match his super strong brow!

Soon enough, driven over the edge by some mutations occurring within him, Dr. Blake is hanging Molly Riordan (Helen Westcott) by her hair from a tree.  You see, he has lost control and surrendered to his base impulses, turning into a GEICO-like cave man and committing all sorts of horrendous deeds. Monster on the Campus (1958)

The monster in the man cannot be stopped.  So much for the wedding to Madeline Howard (Joanna Moore), the daughter of Dr. Gilbert Howard (Alexander Lockwood), president of the university.  All bets are off while Blake transforms on the campus and roams free, smashing college rooms, taunting campus security, and taking out all the pretty ladies.

Reversion.  That’s the name of the game once this prehistoric fish’s blood sinks the skin of Blake.  And he just can’t help himself from turning into primitive man.  The change is almost immediately, which makes this science fiction flick a barrel of laughs. Big hands, big feet, big brow, even bigger problems.  Monster on the Campus is now available on blu-ray thanks to Shout! Factory

Bringing new meaning to necking in the woods, Monster on the Campus has arrived to class on time.

4/5 beers

Monster on the Campus (1958)


Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Scream Factory
Available on Blu-ray
- June 25, 2019
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
: English SDH
English: 16-bit DTS-HD Master Audio
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Monster on the Campus is presented on blu-ray thanks to Scream Factory’s nice 1080p transfer and 2K scan.  The brand new 2K restoration, handling the crisp B&W photography, is simply gorgeous.  The newly minted 1080p transfer is black and white gloriousness in all its crisp visuals.  Textures are full of life and the details are strong, ringing true in almost every scene.  Black levels are deep and keep their edges in the shadows.  Optical effect shots are clear, with some minor fuzziness, but the edges are usually quite sharp.  The 16-bit DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack in two-channel mono is adequate for the at-home experience.



  • There are two NEW commentaries from authors who know more than a few things about Jack Arnold

Special Features:

  • Fans will be pleased with the two new commentaries.  A theatrical trailer and a Still Gallery completes the release.
  • NEW Audio Commentary By Author Dana M. Reemes (Directed By Jack Arnold)
  • NEW Audio Commentary By Professor Of Film Studies/Author Mark Jancovich (Rational Fears: American Horror In The 1950s)
  • 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


Monster on the Campus (1958)

MPAA Rating: Unrated.
77 mins
: Jack Arnold
David Duncan
Arthur Franz, Joanna Moore, Judson Pratt
: Horror
Co-ed beauty captive of man-monster! Campus terror! Students victims of terror-beast!.
Memorable Movie Quote: "Ah, the human female in the perfect state - helpless and silent."
Theatrical Distributor:
Universal Pictures
Official Site:
Release Date:
December 15, 1978
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
June 25, 2019
Synopsis: Fear stalks the seemingly tranquil halls of Dunsfield University with the arrival of a prehistoric fish, the coelacanth. The terror begins when a student's dog laps up water that has been contaminated by the fish and turns into a savage wolf, attacking Madeline Howard (Joanna Moore, Touch Of Evil). The school's paleontology professor, Donald Blake (Arthur Franz, The Caine Mutiny), is accidentally bitten by the coelacanth and blacks out, only to find that a hulking beast has killed one of his friends. Somehow, contact with this fish's prehistoric blood causes a total collapse of evolution, turning animals and humans into mindless, murderous monsters!


Monster on the Campus (1958)

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