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Bindy Sue Frønkünschtein | under the rubble | 08/25/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Roger Corman does it again! Night Of The Blood Beast is a gooey cheese classic! An astronaut returns to earth, only to crash and burn. Scientists find him dead, yet still warm and without rigor mortis. They take him back to a research station, where a strange beast appears and kills one of them. The dead astronaut "wakes up" and starts acting weird. He is somehow linked to the monster and tells everyone that it means no harm (even though it's already murdered one of 'em). The astronaut decides he needs an x-ray and everyone sees that his body is plum full of alien embryos! The good news is that we do get to see the blood beast itself quite a bit. The bad news is that it looks pretty stupid. The beast tries to tell everyone that it is only here to help us by killing us all and melding our minds with it's own. So, the scientists burn it up in a cave. Will more blood beasts attack in the future? We are left to ponder this deep question. Still, as B movies go, this is at the top of the heap! The musical score is the same as in "Attack Of The Giant Leeches" and "Beast From Haunted Cave". Corman was a good recycler! Best when viewed after 2 am..."
Very good, despite the lame monster....
Tuco | Phoenix, Az USA | 04/12/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Not bad at all!! This flick is everything I look for in a 50's sci-fi except for the homemade looking monster. Other than this paper-mache looking parrot from outer space, the direction, camera work, acting, and story were all first rate.
Also the earliest sci-fi I have seen that includes the concept of aliens using humans as a host for incubating their younglings(did Ridley Scott's Alien kipe the idea here?).
For the price you it can't be beat. Make sure you get the Alpha version with the red cover. The transfer and sound are far superior to the other release of this film."
Drive in fare
Tom Lunsford | Torrance, Ca. United States | 05/08/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is a perfect example of a "B' 50's monster movie, comparable to "Attack of the Giant Leeches" or " The Giant Claw" The technical details of this movie aren't worth mentioning, acting's pretty bad too, and the monster looks like a giant paper mache' parrot made by a class of kindergarteners. Despite all that negativity I liked this movie for the same reason I like the two I mentioned above, it's fun to watch. And Bronson's cave makes an appearance, you'll recognize it from several other flicks"
Night of the Bargain Basement Beast
cookieman108 | Inside the jar... | 02/20/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Co-written and produced by Gene Corman, with Roger Corman as the executive producer, Night of the Blood Beast (1958) is a good representation of the Z grade science fiction movies of the late 50's.Directed by Bernard L. Kowalski, who also helmed Attack of the Giant Leeches (1959), the movie stars, among others, John Baer, Angela Greene, and Ed Nelson, from Teenage Caveman (1958), The Brain Eaters (1959), and TV's Peyton Place (1964).The movie starts off proper with an astronaut in a small capsule supposedly returning to Earth after a brief orbit. Something goes wrong, and after much techno babble, "The negative, cross-indexed hyper dyne ion chamber is reading 8 million psi!", "The multi-functional thyroid chronometer is unfunctional!", the small capsule crashes to Earth. Two individuals find the capsule (not much of a rescue party) and discover their space-traveling colleague is no longing among the living. They radio the rest of their small group, who soon arrive, and then they document everything and take the body back to some dinky, remote radar station they are using for a base. What they don't realize is that their chum didn't come back from space alone...oooooh...(cue creepy music)A cursory analysis of the dead man reveals he is dead, but he isn't. The older scientist keeps saying, "That's impossible" every time they find another indication that the dead man may not really be dead. Soon after stuff starts happening...the radio goes kaput, the lights no longer light, vehicles no longer run...seems a magnetic field is playing havoc with just about everything. And to top things off, there's a space thingy running around, which makes it's appearance known by breaking some windows. The dead man comes back to life, and we find out a rather disturbing fact in that the man, who was once dead and is now seemingly alive, has wee, little aliens growing inside his body. Oh yes, the man with the alien babies also develops some kind of telepathic link with the alien, who is now hiding out in one of Hollywood's more famously filmed spots, the Bronson Caves, used for, among other things, the scenes from the 60's Batman TV show where the Batmobile came barreling out whenever the characters left the Batcave.So what happens next? Realizing that their friend and colleague's survival is linked to the alien, do they make nicey nice with the alien? Or do they destroy the abomination? And what about those alien babies? Is a satisfactory conclusion forthcoming? Watch and find out. (Don't hold your breath)I have to say, I thought the element of the man carrying aliens inside him was interesting, and the subsequent story, although a bit talky, kept me interested. The biggest thing working against this movie was the budget. The space creature was completely funky, looking like giant, sickly sloth with google eyes wearing dirty trash bags. This may have been better received at the time, but now seems like a dusty relic. The movie certainly doesn't hold up to others of the time, but is worth checking out if you enjoy clunky, cheaply made science fiction films of the 50's. The dialogue, as I said, got rather clunky, but the direction seemed to movie things along pretty well, along with a 65 minute running time. Short and sweet, that's the way to make a movie like this. I was just really happy they didn't try to pad things out with a lot of stock footage, as was a common practice with a lot of these low budget features.The picture quality of the movie on this disc is not all that great, being washed out and showing many flaws and lacking clarity and the audio drops out briefly a couple of times, but I guess that is to be expected. I am not too familiar with Retromedia and their other releases, so I don't know if they try to use the best possible prints or whatever they have on hand. This release seems shoddy, especially for the asking price. The only extra feature is a really poor copy of the trailer for the movie. There is a nice, lengthy piece on the back of the case about the movie, written by someone from a book I never heard of...Cookieman108"
The Moral? Never Eat Sea Monkeys.
Robert I. Hedges | 05/20/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This sublime little gem from the one and only Roger Corman is a fun and cheesy way to spend 62 minutes of your life. After being launched into space via the magic of some of the lamest animation you will ever see, pilot John Corcoran loses control of his spacecraft and plummets to earth. For crashing at such high speed the spaceship is in remarkably good shape. NASA dispatches their one Jeep to the crash site and arrives within minutes. (Note: it is inadvisable to smoke cigarettes at an aircraft accident site.) John has one cut, but is dead, (evidently) although there is a lot of medical doubletalk about his skin color, so they whisk him to the base in the official NASA flatbed truck for examination. Once back at the base John comes back to life with no warning. They draw a blood sample and see a hysterical piece of animation of one cell, oh sorry, 'alien amorphic cell structure', gobbling up another in the microscope. They decide they best put John in front of a fluoroscope to look inside him, and, (oh the humanity!) he is revealed to be teeming with what appear to be Sea Monkey embryos. John rapidly realizes that the thing that has been terrorizing the base since the crash is a Blood Beast from a different planet, and he is carrying its spawn. Surprisingly, he ends up leading the pro-monster lobby, and decides to reason with the Blood Beast. We actually get to see the felonious (murder and kidnapping) Blood Beast quite a bit (and his amusing shadow a couple of times, too.) It is normally good to get a lot of screen time for the monster in one of these movies, but here, I am not so sure it was that great of an idea, especially in daylight: the Blood Beast looks like a cross between something from 'Sigmund and the Sea Monsters' and a giant puffin with beak, claws, zipper, and very bad complexion. In short, the Blood Beast is a little less than horrifying. Ultimately the movie evokes a bit of 'It Conquered the World' or 'Zontar, the Thing From Venus' in the dramatic ending. Throughout the movie there is dreadful acting (especially the women, for some reason), and great gothic music, which has been recycled from earlier Corman films. This movie was given the MST3K treatment to good effect, and I wish that version was available on DVD as well. Even without the MST3K treatment, this movie is fun to watch and makes you wish that they still made monster movies like this one. Thanks, Roger!"