Monster A-Go Go (1965) (part 6 of 8)
Then we abruptly cut to some women sunbathing on blankets in a park. Gosh, I wonder where this is going. Oddly, most of the sunbathers are fully clothed [?!], except for one girl in a bikini. Anyway, with very little fanfare, Frank Douglas, Mr. Oatmeal Face himself, comes stalking out of the trees. The “sonar + crunching” noise is heard again as he strolls towards the camera. As expected, we switch to his POV as he bears down on the women on blankets, and almost as if on cue, the four women suddenly sit up in unison [!] and start screaming their lungs out. Without a moment’s thought, they all just run away. End scene. Wow, that was suspenseful. And very entertaining. Yes, this is definitely one great Francis Ford Coppolla flick.
Then we cut to a phone on somebody’s desk and it rings. And by “rings”, I mean a guy on the soundtrack is pretty obviously going “Brrrruh” [!!!]. Oh man. I shudder to think of how much things went wrong in post-production that some guy was forced to make a “phone” sound effect with his mouth. It turns out that we’re in some kind of control center, with big bulky computers and an easel. Nora is here, as is Col. Connors. (At first I wasn’t sure it was Nora, because her hairstyle has completely changed since her last scene [?].) Connors answers the phone and gets a report of the attack on the Blanket Party. He points to the site of the attack on a map of the Lake Michigan area, and Nora notes that it’s right near Ruth’s house. Which, by the way, is a fact that will never become important.
Connors asks Nora where Dr. “Chalk Me Up as Incompetent” Logan is. Nora non-answers, so Connors storms out to meet with him personally. We find Logan in his office, sitting at a typewriter doing the hunt-and-peck. Connors shows up and says Douglas was sighted by “over a dozen people.” Uh, I counted four. Connors says, “They panicked. Some of them are still in shock!”
Connors then says, “Washington called. They put me completely in charge.” Actually, by “Washington”, he means he got a call from Isaac Washington, the bartender on The Love Boat. Isaac even did that “snapping and pointing at you with both hands” thing at Connors and everything. Connors tells Logan that they want results, as opposed to all that “screwing up” stuff Dr. Logan has been doing all along.
Connors says he needs “answers”, then gives Logan enough rope to hang himself by asking, “Is there anything else I should know?” Logan tries to duck the question, but after some lackluster yelling from Connors, Logan finally comes out with it, but warns it’s “just a theory”. Apparently, his ballsy hypothesis is that Douglas is “worse” and that he’ll get “progressively worse”. He describes how when he first gave Douglas the antidote, the effect wore off after five days. But with each new injection, the effect wore off more rapidly, and the last time he injected Douglas, it lasted only a few hours.
Logan says that now that Douglas has the antidote, he’ll just get worse each time it wears off. Connors wonders if he’ll get larger [?]. Logan says, “No, he doesn’t get larger.” It’s the pictures that get smaller. “The radius of his danger zone does!” What? Danger zone? Huh? Anyway, without the antidote, he could “contaminate everything and everybody within a radius of fifty miles!”
Connors decides that Douglas “has got to be destroyed” and says they have to keep him out of populated areas. Connors tells Logan, “And I want you with me every minute!” Which, of course, has nothing to do with the hunt for the monster, but that’s a whole other movie.
Out in the night, a jeep filled with Army guys pulls into view, and men jump out. Obnoxious Shouting Narrator, take it away! “As the giant became bolder, his movements were more easily tracked! And the Army was called out in force! Because this was, after all, an American astronaut! And official orders were not to fire! But one nervous soldier is all that is ever needed to start a panic!”
As he talks, we see some kid climbing out of his bedroom window. Upon closer inspection, it turns out to be our old friend Jimmy [!]. Remember him? Ruth’s kid with the crash helmet? An Army guy tries to stop Jimmy, and when he grabs the kid by the arm, the soldier’s obviously plastic rifle falls off his arm and lands on the ground [!]. Suddenly, the soldier blandly says, “My God, look.” The two of them look over at something off-screen and begin backing away. As they back away, the Army guy starts shooting an obvious starter pistol into the air. And… they’re off! He fires the pistol twice more before he trips on something and falls on his ass [!]. Ah, we’re in good hands with the U.S. military.
Meanwhile, some more jeeps cruise into view, and drop off more Army guys. Some of them hunker down and start randomly shooting into the distance. Yeah, so much for those “official orders” not to fire, I guess.
We then see Connors on the phone. He hangs it up awkwardly and tells somebody that Douglas was just at Ruth’s house. Connors says, “It was like shooting at a wall!” Of course, they weren’t supposed to be shooting at Douglas at all in the first place, but so what? We change angles and see that Dr. Logan has joined Nora and Connors in the control center.
Connors asks Dr. Logan what they should do now, but Dr. Logan doesn’t know. Gee, he never let us down before. Except for that time when he let us all down. Connors points to the map and tells Logan and Nora that they have the area surrounded, and they’ll get Douglas within an hour. “Yes!” Nora breathlessly yells, obviously ecstatic to have another line. “But then what?”
Abruptly, we cut to a woman out in the middle of nowhere trying to start her convertible, but not having much luck. A truck happens along at that exact moment, and the woman manages to flag it down. Actually, it probably wasn’t that hard, considering her car is blocking the road. Prepare yourself, because this is without a doubt the most irrelevant scene in the movie. In fact, you could drop this same scene into any other movie, from a Civil War drama to a Biblical epic, and it would have just as much connection to the rest of the movie.
The truck driver pokes his head out and yells at the woman, but she explains her car broke down. The driver, a big meaty Joe Don Baker look-alike, says, “Well, call the Automobile Club!” Poor AAA. First they get an unwanted plug in this movie, and then 13 years later, Moment by Moment. The woman memorably notes, “Hey, I thought truck drivers were the gentlemen of the road!” Oh yeah. Those mudflaps with female silhouettes just scream “chivalry”.
The driver gets out, and seeing her pointy, triangular breasts, suddenly has a big goofy grin plastered on his face. He asks a couple of questions, then deduces that she’s run out of gas, so he grabs a gas can that just happens to be right there on the front seat of his truck [?]. He fills up her tank while she stands right next to him and stabs him in the shoulder with her pointy bra.
Eventually, he tells her to go sit in the car, because she’s “makin’ me nervous!” She complies, and for no reason, he has her open the hood. Soon, we see some silver boots traipsing down the road. Now, you probably think you know what’s about to happen. You know these two people are about to get attacked by the monster. Right? Right? Actually, that’s not what’s about to happen at all. Surprising, I know.
Anyway, after doing nothing under the hood for a while, the truck driver jumps in the woman’s car so he can start it for her. The woman is giving him a total gonna-bang-him-tonight hard stare, and boy, does she have that look perfected.
The car starts and the driver says, “There ya are, ma’am, and for God’s sake, next time drive ’em on a full tank o’ gas!” She says, “Thank you, Lancelot!” but he insists the name is “Kelly”. She tries to give him cash, but Kelly just tosses it back at her and walks off. However, she calls him back, and from out of nowhere pulls him in for a kiss [!!].
She pulls off and a stunned Kelly heads back to his truck. He looks in his side view mirror and says to his reflection, “Gregory Peck?” Uh, no, Chubby Loser. Who got very lucky. But you were close.