Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Mysterious Monsters (1976)

"The motion picture you're about to see was filmed with many teams of camera men and in more than hundred locations around the globe. Scientists representing the worlds foremost research-centers took part in the examination of the evidence. The facts that are to be presented are true. This might be the most startling film you'll ever see..."

With these confident words Peter Graves opens The Mysterious Monsters, a very typical seventies documentary in the wake of Chariot of the Gods, the Erich Von Däniken-documentary who was a great success a couple of years earlier. Though it focuses on Bigfoot, and all the other reincarnations of apemen in the US, it also takes us to a journey around the world for a quick look at other famous monsters. The Loch Ness-monster is presented as a fact, not speculation, and in the end Peter Graves says something about that Bigfoot soon will be as accepted as Nessie and the Gorilla. 

The critical view of the phenomena is more or less non-existant, but a few voices have the opportunity to say a few words to shoot down the Bigfoot-legend - but these voices are quickly shot down by other people, without any discussions. I love that. That's how an exploitation-documentary should be. It has a lot of eyewitness-interviews, some photos and movie footage I've never seen before (among them a longer version of the infamous Patterson-Gimlin film from 1967) and two-three clips of Nessie swimming around. 

But the highlights are the numerous reenactments with the original witnesses and couple of quite good ape-suits! Some of these are creepy, and looks great - and I'm surprised that these costumes haven't been seen in fake Bigfoot-footage after this movie! There's an army of suits to, most of them looks good and even has some kinda of facial movements. A nice thing for us monster-loves out there. 

The best thing is Peter Hurkos, psychic detective, that Peter Graves brings a closed briefcase and Hurkos identifies what's in it - and of course he's starting to talk about something half-man, half-beast, very hairy, lives in cave! Peter Hurkos was a famous psychic who claimed himself to have helped the police with the Boston Strangler-case and a lot of other famous crimes. But most of this where hoaxes to make PR for himself.

A fun, silly, well-made "documentary" with a Peter Graves so serious that he probably got a very big paycheck to do this work of art. Recommended. And I noticed that it's soon out on official dvd. Get it!

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