Ahh. The classics. Sometimes you just need to sit down and enjoy something really old, from a simpler time. Classic monster movies are like games you played when you were a kid. Sure, there are more advanced things to do, but can you imagine getting drunk and playing freeze tag? That would be awesome. And that’s what this movie is. Drunk freeze tag. It’s awesome.
Full disclosure: I have seen this movie already. But not since I was a wee baby of 8. So I decided to watch it again as an adult to see if it holds up.
It definitely does. I loved it then and I love it now.
So this came out the same year as the original Godzilla. This was the era where kaiju and monsters roamed the earth, and beautiful men and women cowered in fear.
One of these monsters is the Gill Man. I love Gill Man. I had a little Gill Man toy as a small baby and he lit up. I also had a little Dracula, a Wolf Man, and a Frankenstein who had a glow-in-the-dark head. Monsters were an essential part of my youth. Going back and revisiting these movies is fantastic (unlike going back and revisiting some other things I liked when I was young… WE’VE ALL BEEN THERE AM I RIGHT?!).
The Creature from the Black Lagoon is about a crew of scientists and divers who are investigating something in the waters of South America. They find a weird bone hand in this “Black Lagoon” so they investigate further. Then the lady goes swimming and the Creature swims under her in a BEAUTIFUL sequence that I desperately wish I could see in 3D (the whole movie was MADE for 3D, and we live in an era of 3D TVs, so LET’S GO UNIVERSAL COME ON). He develops a fixation with her and pretty much just kills people in his attempt to kidnap her and take her to his cave to hang or have snacks or whatever monsters do when they kidnap ladies. And then of course the macho men kill him, save the woman (as you do in the 50s) and go home.
So at one point in the movie they capture the Creature by liberally pouring some kind of poison in the water. A bunch of ecological scientists pour some vague poison into a natural lagoon that a local ship captain uses for easy fishing. The Captain poisons the fish and just sort of grabs them. And then feeds his family poisoned fish. Okay.
You actually kind of feel bad for the Creature in this (which was common back then). He was just hanging out in his lagoon and some white people show up and they’re like “oh uh oh better kill it it’s weird.” I mean it’s basically like a bunch of people go into the ocean and get attacked by sharks so the solution is kill the sharks. That would be messed up if that happened.
Anyway I love classic monster movies. Wolf Man, Frankenstein, Invisible Man, etc. Great movies, all. Even the mediocre sequels are fun and good to chuckle at.
So if you haven’t seen this (or any of the other Universal Classics) then I highly recommend you watch it asap. Especially if you want to see some of the origins of horror.