Giant From The Unknown
Cast: Ed Kemmer, Sally Frasser, Morris Ankrum
Writers: Frank Hart Taussig, Ralph Brook
Director: Richard E Cunha
Giant from the Unknown is a very schlocky B horror movie made with love and devotion that I can’t really get mad about the outcome of it, despite its flaws. The premise of a Spanish warrior whose body gets revived and now seeks revenge thanks to an Indian tribal curse is something we have seen before. It was used as plot points in the horror classics Poltergeist, The Shining and many more. What I appreciate most about this movie is that at the time of release. Westerns were still a big thing and a lot of those shows had the Native Americans focused as the bad guys. So to have this movie say to American audiences at that time that these are consequences for stealing the land of people who were here first is a kind of a bold move.
There is a lot of charm in early sci fi films and this was due to most of them being shot in black and white. One thing I love about movies being shot this way is the atmosphere it sets. There’s this sort of lighthearted charm within this small mountain town(despite the racism by only a select few) that is nice to watch. Seeing Wayne innocently flirting with Janet in front of her dad was cliché but also cute in a lame kind of way. I also liked that even though Janet is treated as the damsel in distress throughout most of this. She is the one to first discover the site where the giant came from. Plus I can’t help but love a movie that fades to black when a kill happens is the most terrifying thing to happen.
The extras that came with the blu-ray by The Film Detective were fascinating and I plan on rewatching it with commentary by film historian Tom Weaver and co star Gary Crutcher who played the teenage boy Charlie Brown later on. Young filmmakers should watch older titles if they ever want to be better at their craft. While it may be easy to just discredit this as nothing more than a forgotten B Movie feature. I could easily see how this movie has influenced features from other science fiction and horror directors.
3 *** Stars out of 5