Monster from Green Hell - Monster from Green Hell( Blu Ray) [The Film Detectives - 2022]
Monster from Green Hell is a 1957 cold war sci-fi movie, much beloved of Glenn Danzig, who wrote the song Green Hell about it whilst he was still in the Misfits, and directed by Kenneth G Crane, who was famous as an editor of cult movies, however, he would only ever go on to direct four movies, The Monster from Green Hell, The Manster, Half Human and When Hell Broke Loose. This new Blu-ray edition from The Film Detectives features two different versions of the film, the first in widescreen and the second, full-frame. For the purpose of this review, I chose to watch the film in widescreen.
Whilst trying to understand the effects of radiation on the animals of earth, a group of scientists, led by Dr Quent Brady (Jim Davis of Dallas, Big Jake and El Dorado fame) and Dan Morgan (Robert Griffin, I was A Teenage Werewolf, Serpent of the Nile and Bonanza) are enlisted to investigate the effects of an experiment to send a wasp into space. Upon re-entry to the earth’s atmosphere, the wasp’s capsule crash lands in a region of west Africa known as Green Hell. After a series of reports of giant mutant wasps in the vicinity of a West African volcano, our two intrepid heroes, set out for Africa in search of answers, and to clean up any mess the experiment has caused. Whilst in Africa they come across a medical missionary by the name of Dr Lorenz (Vladimir Sokoloff, The Magnificent Seven, For Whom the Bells Toll and Macao) as they try to get to the bottom of those bizarre reports about mutant insects in an effort to ensure the survival of the human race.
Monster from Green Hell is one of a host of sci-fi B-movies shot during the 1950s that deal with the threat to earth from whatever is out there beyond our own planet. In an age of massive scientific advancement, from man’s impetus for space exploration to the development of the atomic bomb these films use those innovations as a cautionary tale about what we may discover. Monster from Green Hell is one of the more enjoyable films of its type, the cheesy script and appalling special effects give the film a charm all its own, and whilst it’s not as technically inept as some of Ed Wood’s bad taste classics it remains a much-loved film with fans of cheesy horror and science fiction.
The new 4k print from which this Blu-ray is drawn looks pretty good for a 65-year-old film, and it’s nice to have the option of watching it in either widescreen or full frame. On top of that, the inclusion of the colourized finale really adds something special to this release. If you love classic 50s B-movies like The Thing from Another World, or giant monster movies like King Kong, or Them! You’ll probably find plenty to enjoy on this disc. On top of the different prints of the film, there is an audio commentary with author Stephen R Bissette, and a Jim Davis retrospective from film historian C. Courtney Joyner. Overall, the film is cheap and cheerful fun from the golden age of the b-movie, lovingly restored and given a very decent Blu-ray release.Darren Charles