Tag Archives: creature from the black lagoon



Mike and I have known each other for many years. At times, it feels like we were torn from the same cloth. Both lovers of horror movies and comic books, both fond of the drink, and we both love antagonizing a mutual friend we share. But with this Drive-In Double Feature, I can add a new trait we share in common to the list: being delinquent! I’m glad Mike did finally turn a piece in, because the Drive-In Double Feature wouldn’t feel complete without his inclusion. 

When I was asked to do a Drive-in Double Feature, I thought to myself “Fuck I gotta write something for another website”.  But the more I thought about it, I figured this would be a great way to show off my love of two of the best horror movies of all time with Creature from the Black Lagoon and JAWS.  Now many folks will say neither of these are horror movies and more monster movies, but come on those are one in the same, and you can’t tell me a movie (JAWS) that scared people enough to not swim for years isn’t a horror film.  Plus I would envision these movies being shown somewhere where the audience can be in the water while they watch these films to add to the scariness of the features.


First I want to start with Creature from the Black Lagoon.  This movie is on my list of favorite movies of all time and I feel it’s the best Universal Monster movie as well.  This movie was introduced to me as a kid, probably around 6 or 7, by my father who is a huge fan of the franchise as well.  Watching it, something about it sucked me into the world this movie was in.  Not only did we get an elaborate and beautiful jungle setting, which is amazing since this was filmed in Florida and the Universal back lot, but we got a colorful cast of characters that I wasn’t used to seeing in movies made in the 80’s. We were given the strong confident man of the 50’s in Richard Carlson’s “David Reed”, the business man in Richard Denning’s “Mark Williams”, the know if all rugged boat captain in Nestor Paivas “Lucas” and the smart/damsel in distress with the beautiful Julia Adams portrayal of “Kay”.  Along with the wonderful location, the film was shot beautifully as well as the underwater scenes were captured wonderfully, especially considering the technical limitations at the time, and the great score added to the tension of each scene where we thought the Gill-man would show up.  Add to that the need for the actor in the Gill-man suit to hold his breath for long periods of time underwater, and you know this movie was a tough one to film.  One can’t forget that this was also filmed for a 3-D release so we got some great 3-D gags that if you can see it in a theatre today, you will not be disappointed.

Not only does Creature continue the great legacy of Universal Monsters, but this also offers those great moments where you never know if the Gill-man will show up.  A small swim by Kay makes you think her life is in danger, even when nothing is close to her.  That and the Creature, like most Universal monsters, is a tragic character that in the end was just trying to protect his home from those stupid humans.  Plus, and I’m not sure but it makes sense, I believe Julia Adams portrayal as Kay started my love of ladies with the classic pin-up look, that was luckily brought over by Jennifer Connelly in The Rocketeer, but that is a story for another day.


Next up is the 2nd best movie ever made in my opinion, (The Empire Strikes Back obviously takes the top spot) and that is JAWS.  Now not much has to be said about how great this movie is as we all know that already, plus knowing all the trouble the movie had getting made is also common knowledge.  But even not addressing any of that, and really we should but whatever, this movie is still one of the most enjoyable and scary movies out there.  With a superb trio of stars, Roy Scheider, Richard Dreyfuss and the wonderful Robert Shaw, Steven Spielberg was able to create a fantastic film that featured all three men equally while giving us three completely different characters to all work off each other.  Add to that we get a giant killing machine stalking Amity Island creating much havoc and were in for an exciting film.  With all the problems the shark had, as we know, is why we barely see the thing until the climax of the film.  And of course, tossing John Williams’s score on top of shots makes things even scarier, as we never know when an attack will happen.  Much like in Creature, a simple swim by someone has us on the edge of our seats wondering if this is when the monster will attack.  Lucky for us we get plenty of carnage even without seeing the shark.


See that image above?  To me this is still one of the scariest scenes in movie history.  A combination of how it is filmed, done on Spielbergs dime to get one more big scare out the audience, and the shock of seeing Ben Gardners head appear out of nowhere, gives you a jump each time.  Whenever I watch it, the scene still gives me chills and fear even though I know exactly what will happen.


So yeah, we get it all with this film…gore, laughs, great film work and a wonderful score.  On top of that you get a great cast of main and supporting characters as well and you’re in for a great flick.
So there you have it kids, two great movies that would play perfectly together and I’d highly recommend viewing this summer….or really anytime you get the chance.

Mike can be found (and contacted) via Nerd City, both on its website and its Facebook. He provides Nerd City’s most popular recurring piece, Wrasslin’ Wednesdays.

Drive-In Double Feature: Creature from the Black Lagoon & Tremors!


I would be lying if I said the idea to do a Drive-In Double Feature wasn’t directly inspired by something Tom Bryce does every December over at his site, Shit Movie Fest. For the last handful of years, he’s done a month-long segment around the holidays called “Shitmas” where readers submit pieces about Christmas-set horror films, retro Christmas TV shows, and general holiday weirdness nostalgia. It’s great! So in honor of the awesome “Shitmas”, I thought I’d try out a summertime version, which resulted in The Drive-In Double Feature. Tom was kind enough to not only support the idea but he also submitted a piece. Take it away, Tom!

The allure of the Drive-In Theatre is something I myself have only experienced first hand once back in the 80s when my summers were spent exclusively in Wildwood, New Jersey! The Double Feature for that particular evening was E.T. and The Goonies! Sadly I don’t really recall much about the place or even the night besides wearing my pajamas to the show and failing asleep in the back of my Dad’s Station wagon!

When Joey here at Camera Viscera asked me to take part in his “Drive-In Double Feature” idea I immediately had two movies come to mind! Both of these films I consider to be in the the top echelon of my Horror Fandom and up to this point I never got to experience either on the Big Screen! Those two choices are . . .



If you have ever visited my blog you may already know by now that I am a huge fan of Creature from the Black Lagoon! I first came to know and love the Gill-man thanks to a Monster Museum on the Wildwood Boardwalk that had a a bunch of wax figures of the Universal Monsters and other popular horror icons of the time displayed in cheesy setups! They had King Kong and Godzilla sitting on top of buildings playing cards, Dracula on a beach holding a tube of sunscreen, and then there was the Gill-Man, with a fish hook in his mouth and two oblivious fishermen in a boat in front of him not aware of what exactly they caught! Needless to say I was hooked (sorry for the lame pun) from that point on and continue to this day to seek out Gill-man related merchandise at all the Horror Movie Con I attend!
To see the Gill-man with a crowd on a nice summer night would be a dream come true!

Tom with actress Julie Adams who plays “Kay” and actor Ricou Browning who portrayed the creature in the underwater scenes of CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON.

TREMORS (1990)

Tremors is another movie I hold dear to my heart and think would be the perfect choice to follow the Gill-man that evening. Both movies were released by Universal Pictures, have a monster(s) who went unseen by the human eye for an undetermined amount of time, and they both feature some stunning special effects and design work that will last the test of time!

The story of Val, Earl and the Town of Perfection, Nevada battling those pesky “Graboids” is as fun as horror movies get i.m.o. and would no doubt draw a good crowd!

Tom with actor Michael Gross who plays “Burt” in TREMORS

As I mentioned earlier in the post I still haven’t seen either of these movies on anything besides Home Media but am in luck in a couple months because “The Blobfest” which I attend every year will actually be pairing Creature (in 3D no less!) with their annual showing of The Blob!

Thanks again Joey for allowing me to take part in this fun endeavor and a special thanks to Jason Price of Icon vs Icon for creating the Creature/Tremors Poster for Me!

More Tom Bryce goodness can be found on his website, Shit Movie Fest.