The Atomic Submarine (1959) – Friday Night At The Home Drive-In

Poster for The Atomic Submarine (1959)The Atomic Submarine (1959) by #SpencerGordonBennet
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#ArthurFranz #DickForan #BrettHalsey #JoiLansing

A nuclear submarine near the Arctic Circle encounters electrical storms, a UFO and lots of hairy tentacles.

“The Screen’s Spectacular Inferno of the Battle for Civilization!”
“When U.S.A. Killer Subs meet a ruthless power in the icy depths of a Polar Sea!”

#SciFi #Thriller
#NotQuiteClassicCinema
#FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn

When I first came across The Atomic Submarine (1959), I was afraid that it might just be a simple story of a submarine crew that runs into technical trouble under the ocean somewhere. Not that this couldn’t be a compelling movie, but when I program an all night marathon at the home drive-in, I’m hoping to see some monsters or aliens, or something like that. Thankfully, The Atomic Submarine is about an alien invasion of sorts. This one doesn’t come from the skies, however. – it comes from under the water… Continue reading

Friday Night At The Home Drive-In: The Monster of Piedras Blancas (1959)

Poster art for The Monster of Piedras Blancas (1959The Monster of Piedras Blancas (1959) by #IrvinBerwick
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#LesTremayne #ForrestLewis #JeanneCarmen

A doctor, a sheriff and a biologist pursue a creature hanging around a lighthouse.

“The fiend that walks Lovers’ Beach!”

“HE PREYS ON HUMAN FLESH!”

#Horror #SciFi
#NotQuiteClassicCinema
#FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn

It’s pretty obvious that The Monster of Piedras Blancas (1959) was influenced by Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), which I saw on TV when I was quite young. I also had a friend who was obsessed with it, and had a book filled with with pictures from the movie. I knew another guy who, I think, had built of model of The Creature, or Gill-man. I may have even had a picture from that movie in a Famous Monsters magazine. In other words, Creature from the Black Lagoon was a super famous and popular movie. The Monster of Piedras Blancas, however, I had never heard of… Continue reading

Friday Night At The Home Drive-In: The Killer Shrews (1959)

Poster for The Killer Shrews (1959)The Killer Shrews (1959) by #RayKellogg
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#JamesBest #IngridGoude

A maniacal scientist transforms tiny shrews into giant, man-killing beasts.

“Ravaging beasts feed on human flesh!”

“They had to eat 3 times their body weight each day… OR STARVE!”

#Horror #SciFi
#NotQuiteClassicCinema
#FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn

When I was a kid, I watched The Dukes of Hazzard (1979-1985) every Friday night. I suppose it wasn’t far off from being an early version of a  Friday Night at the Home Drive-in. There’s something about that show that feels like each episode in a mini-drive-in movie. The kind about cool cars and moonshine and corrupt Southern sheriffs. I suppose Macon County Line (1974) and Jackson County Jail (1976) might be examples of a sort. In any case, I loved watching the Dukes outwit Boss Hogg and Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane week after week. I thought the two actors who portrayed those lovable villains – Sorrell Booke and James Best – were a brilliant comedy team, like Abbott and Constello or Bert and Ernie (I was a kid, remember). I enjoyed watching their comedic mishaps as much as Bo and Luke’s victories – maybe more. Continue reading

Friday Night At The Home Drive-In: 4D Man (1959)

Poster for 4D Man (1959)4D Man (1959) by #IrvinSYeaworthJr
w/#RobertLansing #LeeMeriwether #JamesCongdon #PattyDuke

A scientist discovers a formula enabling him to pass through solid surfaces, but he also rapidly ages, which forces him to kill humans in order to reverse the aging process.

“He Walks Through Walls Of Solid Steel And Stone… Into The 4th Dimension!”

#Horror #SciFi
#NotQuiteClassicCinema
#FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn

I was not at all familiar with 4D Man (1959) before I watched it last week. It turns out that it was made by the people who did The Blob (1958) just one year before. The Blob was one of my childhood favourites. I watched it several times on TV back then. I actually haven’t seen it in a long time, but you can bet I’ll be revisiting it very soon. Continue reading

Friday night at the home drive-in: The Alligator People (1959)

Poster for The Alligator People (1959)The Alligator People (1959) by #RoyDelRuth

w/#BeverlyGarland #BruceBennett #LonChaneyJr

While hypnotized by two psychiatrists, a woman describes the mysterious disappearance of her husband – on their wedding day – and the horrifying events that followed…,

“Her Honeymoon…Shattered by an Unbelievable Horror!”

#Horror #SciFi
#NotQuiteClassicCinema
#FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn

I did not see The Alligator People (1959) on TV when I was young. I had never heard of it, in fact, until I found a DVD copy in a bargain bin one day. As anyone who knows me can attest, any movie called The Alligator People – made in 1959, no less – has got to come home with me. And this one was no exception… Continue reading