- Monster A Go-Go
Monster a Go-Go! Directed by Herschell Gordon Lewis
Produced by Herschell Gordon Lewis Written by Jeff Smith
Herschell Gordon Lewis (as Sheldon Seymour)
Narrated by Sheldon Seymour Starring Henry Hite
Cinematography Frank Pfeiffer Release date(s) July 1965 (United States) Running time 70 min. Country USA Language English
Monster A Go-Go, (also released as Monster A-Go Go and Terror at Halfday) is a 1965 science fiction horror film directed by Bill Rebane and Herschell Gordon Lewis (who remained uncredited in association with this film). It's considered one of the worst films ever.
The film had an unusual production history. Director Rebane ran out of money while making the film. Lewis, who needed a second film to show with his own feature, Moonshine Mountain, bought the film, added a few extra scenes and some dialogue, and then released it, creating an odd, disjointed film with little continuity. Rebane had abandoned the film in 1961; Lewis did not finish the film until 1965 and so was unable to gather all of the original cast, resulting in almost half the characters disappearing midway through the film to be replaced by other characters who fill most of the same roles. One of the actors Lewis was able to get back had dramatically changed his look in the intervening years, necessitating his playing the brother of the original character.
The plot concerns an American astronaut, Frank Douglas, who mysteriously disappears from his spacecraft as it parachutes to Earth. The vanished astronaut is apparently replaced by or turned into a large, radioactive, humanoid monster. A team of scientists and military men attempt to capture the monster — and at one point succeed, only to have him escape again. Neither the capture nor the escape are ever shown, simply mentioned by the narrator.
At the end of the film, the scientists receive a telegram stating that Douglas is in fact alive and well, having been rescued in the North Atlantic, implying the monster was an alien impersonating Douglas. However, after the monster seemingly vanishes, the narrator supposedly claims that there was never a monster in the first place:
As if a switch had been turned, as if an eye had been blinked, as if some phantom force in the universe had made a move eons beyond our comprehension, suddenly, there was no trail! There was no giant, no monster, no thing called "Douglas" to be followed. There was nothing in the tunnel but the puzzled men of courage, who suddenly found themselves alone with shadows and darkness! With the telegram, one cloud lifts, and another descends. Astronaut Frank Douglas, rescued, alive, well, and of normal size, some eight thousand miles away in a lifeboat, with no memory of where he has been, or how he was separated from his capsule! Then who, or what, has landed here? Is it here yet? Or has the cosmic switch been pulled? Case in point: The line between science fiction and science fact is microscopically thin! You have witnessed the line being shaved even thinner! But is the menace with us? Or is the monster gone? — closing narration
In popular culture
- Monster A Go-Go was featured in an episode of movie-mocking television show Mystery Science Theater 3000 on Comedy Central. As it is an incredibly blatant deus ex machina the phrase, "But there was no monster!" became an often repeated riff for similar events in other films. And, according to the official The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Amazing Colossal Episode Guide, the team felt that this film was the worst movie they had ever seen.
- Monster A Go-Go was released with Psyched by the 4-D Witch as a DVD double feature by Something Weird Video.
- The MST3K version of the film was released by Rhino Home Video as part of the Collection, Volume 8 DVD set.
- The film's original director, Bill Rebane, is working on a special edition DVD release.
- ^ ""Recap: Monster A-Go Go (1965)"". The Agony Booth. June 16, 2003. http://www.agonybooth.com/monster_a_go_go/default.asp?Page=5. Retrieved 2007-01-21.
- ^ (DVD) Monster A Go-Go / Psyched by the 4-D Witch. Something Weird Video. 1965.
- ^ During the episode, the MST3K crew of Joel and the Bots expressed their strong disappointment and frustration with the film's nonsensical ending by booing at the screen as they departed from the theater. Beaulieu, Trace; et al. (1996). ""Season 4"". The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Amazing Colossal Episode Guide. New York: Bantam Books. p. 82. ISBN 0-553-37783-3.
- Monster A Go-Go at the Internet Movie Database
- Monster A Go-Go at AllRovi
- Daddy-O's Drive-In Dirt history of the film
Films directed by Herschell Gordon Lewis
The Prime Time (1960) • Living Venus (1960) • The Adventures of Lucky Pierre (1961) • Daughter of the Sun (1962) • Nature's Playmates (1962) • Goldilocks and The Three Bares (1963) • BOING-N-G! (1963) • Scum of the Earth! (1963) • Bell, Bare and Beautiful (1963) • Blood Feast (1963) • Two Thousand Maniacs! (1964) • Moonshine Mountain (1964) • Color Me Blood Red (1965) • Monster A Go-Go (1965) • Sin, Suffer and Repent (1965) • An Eye For An Eye (1966) • Jimmy, the Boy Wonder (1966) • The Magic Land of Mother Goose (1967) • Suburban Roulette (1967) • A Taste of Blood (1967) • Something Weird (1967) • The Gruesome Twosome (1967) • The Girl, the Body, and the Pill (1967) • Blast-Off Girls (1967) • She-Devils on Wheels (1968) • Just for the Hell of It (1968) • How To Make a Doll (1968) • The Psychic (1968) • Linda and Abilene (1969) • The Ecstasies of Women (1969) • The Wizard of Gore (1970) • Miss Nymphet's Zap-In (1970) • This Stuff'll Kill Ya! (1971) • Black Love (1972) • Year of the Yahoo! (1972) • The Gore Gore Girls (1972) • Blood Feast 2: All U Can Eat (2002) The Uh! Oh! Show (2009)
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