You may remember a few years back (in 2015!) I noted that Kelsey Grammer was slated to be in a spider movie called The Nest. Well, the title has changed to 7 Guardians of the Tomb, and it looks to be finally coming out this year. I can’t say it looks good, but it does look delightful. Ancient tombs, spiders, and things going boom — I’m in!
The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec (2010)
Action, Adventure, Comedy
Based on comics by Jacques Tardi.
In order to heal her sister’s near-fatal tennis injury, writer Adèle Blanc-Sec retrieves the mummy of the physician to Pharoah Ramses II for a physicist on death row to bring back to life.
Reasons to Watch
- It’s utterly ridiculous and delightful
- There’s a pterodactyl
- Near-fatal tennis accident
In a just world this would have launched a series of movies. There is however a later animated film based on Tardi’s work, April and the Extraordinary World.
Directed by Irwin Allen
Based on The Lost World Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Written by Charles Bennett and Irwin Allen
Starring Michael Rennie, Jill St. John, David Hedison, Claude Rains, Richard Haydn, Ray Stricklyn, Fernando Lamas, and Vitina Marcus
The conceit of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World is enthralling. Explorers discover a region that stands apart from the modern world, where evolution stood still; a place where tribes battled apes—sure, he was ripping off Jules Verne to some extent, but who didn’t? And it is Doyle’s title that we use to describe plots that involve isolated pockets of prehistoric life. It’s been filmed many times but only once was it done by the master of disaster, director and producer Irwin Allen.
Mysterious Island (1961)
Action, adventure, science fiction
Based on The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne. (Sequel to both Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea and In Search of the Castaways.)
Castaways fight giant animals and pirates with the help of Captain Nemo while trying to escape before the island’s volcano erupts.
Reasons to Watch
- Harryhausen creature effects
- Joan Greenwood
- Herbert Lom
Although based on a Jules Verne novel, the giant creatures came in by way of H.G. Welles’ The Food of the Gods and How It Came to Earth. Nemo is trying to solve world hunger through enlarging food sources, a common misconception about the motivation of the scientists in that book. This is an ironic combination of plots, as Verne despised the lack of scientific basis in Welles’ stories.
Directed by Richard E. Cunha
Written by H.E. Barrie and Richard E. Cunha
Starring Rudolph Anders, Irish McCalla, Tod Griffin, Leni Tana, Victor Sen Yung, Gene Roth, and Charles Opunui
The English language is cluttered with phrases like “too much of a good thing” and “everything but the kitchen sink”. These perfectly describe why I love She Demons, because if it wasn’t so over-stuffed with cliches that pay it probably wouldn’t be interesting all. It’s as though the creators couldn’t decide what story to tell and went with everything.