Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Mixed Genre Wednesday - The Beast of Hollow Mountain (1956) - starring Guy Madison

Y'know, when your ol' Professor was just a kid,  we spent a lot of time playing a game called "Cowboys and Indians". I feel that I have to explain this to the younger crowd, because they, of course, no longer play this game. Ever since "Indians" became "Native Americans" and kids started getting thrown out of schools or arrested for pointing their fingers and shouting "BANG!", well... And of course, there were vaiations on the game: "Cops and Robbers", "Batman and the Joker", and on and on. Still, even in those days of unbridled revelry, I can't say that our imaginations would have ever taken us so far as to posit "Cowboys vs. Dinosaus". Yet that's exactly what happens in today's genre mashup.

The Beast of Hollow Mountain presents us with Jimmy Ryan, played by Guy Madison, who is investigating the mysterious disappearance of catlle from the area ranches. Jimmy just happens to live in the area of Hollow Mountain, of which "It is said that a mountain surrounded by a swamp is hollow and that a prehistoric monster from 'the dawn of time' comes out during times of drought to stalk the land." Of course, Jimmy and his fellows are having none of it until they are suddenly confronted by a beast that truly is from the land that time forgot.

The movie was actually based on an idea by stop-motion pioneer Willis O'Brien, one of the men behind the original King Kong, and the man who taught Ray Harryhousen the fine art of bringing life to what is basically a metal frame covered with clay. Unfortunately, the film spends far too much time on the Western aspect and not enough on the dinosaur, but it still delivers enough campy fun to be entertaining.

Here's a trailer:

The Skinny:
Title: The Beast of Hollow Mountain
Release Date: 1956
Running Time: 81 min
Starring: Guy Madison
Directed by: Edward Nassour and Ismael Rodríguez
Producer: Unknown
Production Company: Peliculas Rodriguez

Beast of Hollow Mountain is available to watch or download for free here.
It's also available on DVD from Amazon: The Beast of Hollow Mountain.
Unfortunately, it doesn't appear to be available from Netflix.

Until next time, Happy Treasure Hunting,
-Professor Damian


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