Jonathan Schaper | London, Ontario Canada | 02/17/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In Monster-A-Go-Go a space capsule returns to earth, crashing off-course. When it is located, the pilot is missing. Meanwhile a giant with bad skin is slowly shambling towards a city and everyone who comes near him drops dead from radiation poisoning. Could the giant really be the astronaut? And will the army remember that it has weapons such as sniper rifles capable of killing people from a distance before the film ends?The best thing about Monster-A-Go-Go is its title, there is a gratuitous dance club scene, and the monster (played by a real giant) looks great (but you rarely get to see him). The more scientifically advanced viewer will find some amusement in the claim that the monster is becoming increasingly radioactive, causing his radius of danger to increase, when by definition any object which is radioactive becomes less dangerous over time (otherwise it cannot be giving off radiation!!) And there is a phone which does not ring until 7 minutes after it has already been answered (bad soundtrack). But mostly you get dull talky dialogue between people just standing around and detailed narration, most of it dubbed in, all of which put me to sleep more easily than accounting classes. The film is too tedious to watch without fastforwarding through most of it, even for a fan of old monster films like myself who doesn't expect to see gore, death and special fx every few seconds. This gets a very weak 2 star rating.But you get more than your money's worth with Psyched by the 4D Witch. This is, hands down, THE most insane film ever made, and is almost beyond description (except by giving a detailed blow-by-blow account). It is sort of like a combination of one of Ed Wood's last few films (e.g. One Million AC/DC) and a REALLY intense, bad acid trip. Every few seconds you will ask yourself "WHAT WERE THEY THINKING!" I can't imagine even people going to a theatre completely stoned out of their minds failing to question the sanity of the filmmakers. From the beginning until the very end of the film you will think things cannot get any stranger, but they do! Not one single second of the film has visuals which are not weird or experimental. The acid rock theme song played repeatedly throughout the film is also hilarious and will haunt your brain for the rest of your life. Even during the most serious business meeting a voice singing "Beware of the 4D Witch, Beware!" will suddenly pop into your head. Could this film have been part of some sort of otherworldly psychological warfare program targeting the unsuspecting peoples of Earth? Perhaps! I'm wondering when the invasion will begin."
A bad science fiction film and a silly sexploitation flick
Lawrance M. Bernabo | The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota | 02/27/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Good evening, and welcome to the first Saturday night devoted to watching one of the dozens of DVDs out there offering a double-feature of bad B-movies from the hey day of exploitation cinema. The first feature on this DVD is the black & white "Monster A-Go-Go" from 1965, although I think the theme song is actually entitled "Go, Monster, Go," a catchy little rocker performed by The Other Three. A space capsule comes back to Earth but lands in the woods outside of Chicago, so the police have trouble finding it. A helicopter pilot finds the smallest space capsule you have ever seen, but the astronaut is missing. Fortunately there is a scientist (you can tell because he carries a pipe) and he is able to shed light on the mystery before he goes back to the lab to figure out the dead helicopter pilot was literally "cooked to death" by radiation (this film has my type of bad science, which is so bad even I know it is bad). We then cut suddenly to teenagers dancing in a basement somewhere. This looks promising, especially when one couple go park in the guy's car. He is pawing too much so she runs away, just in time to be spared as a really tall figure comes out of the dark and kills the guy really fast (but leaves all alone the annoying dog that keeps barking and barking and barking).
The really tall figure turns out to be the missing astronaut, Frank Douglas (Henry Hite), who is now 10-feet tall and has a face that looks like a lot like oatmeal. Now the body count starts to rise. In fact, just to make sure there is no suspense the announcer tells us that the next victim is about to be killed. This is one movie where being the scientist does not mean you get to be the hero, just another corpse, because even with a Geiger counter a 10-foot tall monster can sneak up on you and kill you. Either the announcer informs us that the character we are looking at is going to die (because they have problems like an "extraordinarily bad sense of timing"), at which point we watch the character for several minutes and then the monster shows up and kills them, or we watch some people who escape from the monster. The monster is not that bad, but there is so little of him and the thrilling conclusion is pretty much off screen. The ratio between action and dialogue is really skewed towards the latter, which is strange because the two things really pushed in the trailer for "Monster A-Go-Go" are action and pretty girls, and there is not that much action (3 stars).
The best part of this DVD is all the stuff in between the two features. There is a homemade horror short, "Bedtime Booga Booga," which is pretty lame, and a "Trippy Short" called "Psyched by the 2D Dot," which torments a naked dancer with a black dot. Then there is "Driving Miss Daisy Crazy," which I think is a relatively recent attempt to make a sexploitation film in the manner of the 1960s (but I cannot prove it one way or the other). A socialite in New York City has a husband who is trying to drive her crazy, giving her drugs so that he can take Polaroids while her psychiatrist, the maid, and other people do "disgusting" things to her. An interesting excuse for nudity, but since the main character thinks it is all "disgusting" it must be all right to show it and this short is better than both the features put together. The high points are the opportunity to get a witch deflector to protect you during "Witchcraft" and the fact that a movie of unspeakable horror ("Eyes of Hell," formerly "The Mask") is rated PG. The only complaint is that I do not seem to be able to find any of these movies readily available on DVD (4 stars).
Then you can enjoy the second feature, the R-rated "Psyched by the 4-D Witch (A Tale of Demonology)," which is filmed in "Transetheric Vision" according to the opening credits, which translated into heavily saturated red. Since the film is supposed to look like an acid trip you can only wonder what it would do to somebody actually tripping on LSD. Again we have a rock song at the beginning that warns us to "beware of the 4-D Witch" (and keeps popping up through the movie). The story begins with Cindy (Margo, the mother of Eddie Albert, Jr. apparently), engaging in a sexual candlelight ritual. Cindy is the descendant of an early colonial witch named Abigail, who contacts her across the chasm of whatever separates them and offers Cindy unlimited orgasms (while keeping her virginity for daddy). The next thing we know Cindy is possessed by Abigail and this film continues to try and take its tongue and drive it right through both cheeks.
Basically Cindy has a series of sexual adventures, which she numbers (the alternative is grading them and that would not be good). In keeping with the witchcraft theme, a snake becomes prominent at one point. This 1972 film was conceived, written and directed by Victor Luminera and also stars Esoterica as the Witch, Tom Yerian as the Vampire (when he appears the movie goes all the way down the drain), and Kelly Guthrie as Mr. Jones, the homosexual neighbor who dares to reject Cindy's advances. There are also a host of Astral demons. This is one of those films that is so cheap that all of the dialogue consists of voice overs, which is rather important because you hear more than you see in this particular film (and you hear a lot of great classical music at key moments, including Ravel's "Bolero," of course). This movie is too silly to be sexy and too dumb to be funny (2 stars, which is a total of 9 stars, divide by two for the double-feature, which would be 4.5, which is too high, so we round down to 4 stars in terms of entertainment value rather than any idea of quality).
That is it for this go around, boys and girls. Come back next week when the double-feature will be "The Ghastly Ones" and "Seeds of Sin.""
Monster-a-Go-Go: one of the worst movies ever made.
Robert P. Beveridge | Cleveland, OH | 08/28/2009
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Monster-a-Go-Go! (Bill Rebane, 1965)
Bill Rebane (The Giant Spider Invasion), who would go on to be generally considered one of the worst directors of all time, first inflicted his vision of celluloid idiocy on the American public with Monster-a-Go-Go!, a sort of cross between fifties B monster movies and Reefer Madness!. (Weirdly, it bears more than a little resemblance to the later film The Incredible Melting Man. I have always wondered what drugs the makers of that movie were on; now I wonder how many times they watched Monster-a-Go-Go! and what drugs they were under the influence of while watching it.) Filmed by Rebane in 1961 and abandoned when he had trouble finding financing, Monster-a-Go-Go! Was given a new lease on life in 1965, when Herschell Gordon Lewis bought the footage from Rebane, finished the film uncredited (including doing the voiceovers), and released it, kick-starting Rebane's career as a horrendous filmmaker. Thank you, Mr. Lewis.
The plot, if you can call it that: a spacecraft crash-lands in America, and the retrieval team that goes to find the astronaut finds it empty. It seems the astronaut has been irradiated, and is now a ten-foot-tall cannibal mutant. Or something like that. Needless to say, every victim of the monster (other than the poor helicopter pilot who was sent to retrieve him--opportunistic murder FTW!) is someone who was doing something baaaaaaaaad. "If only she'd danced with her boyfriend instead of that other boy...". Yes. That's an actual line from the voiceover.
It is said that the producers of Mystery Science Theater 3000 considered this the worst film they'd seen until they first saw Manos: The Hands of Fate. I disagree; this is far, far worse than Manos could ever hope to be. Of course, I think this because Manos didn't have the simplistic, and utterly stupid, moralistic streak Lewis forced upon this movie, but that's by far not the only problem here. The acting is torrentially bad. (Yes, I know that makes no grammatical sense, but it popped into my head and I like it, so I'm leaving it there.) The direction is hackneyed and wooden. The editing seems to have been done by tossing the footage into a blender and pasting together whatever came out. The soundtrack is... well, okay, you have to watch this movie if only to hear Herschell Gordon Lewis' velvety voiceovers combined with the awful, electronic lounge music in most of the movie (and the bop in the very few scenes that give the movie the second half of its title). Seriously, Lewis' voiceovers? If you can ignore the moralistic dreck, they're the best thing about the movie. The guy could've sold ice to eskimos. Were he still around today, he'd have Ron Popeil over a barrel.
Truly, one of the worst movies ever made. (half)