Saturday, May 20, 2017

A Quick Look: THE LEGEND OF BLOOD MOUNTAIN (1965 - color)

   Here's a movie you'll probably never see. I have a thing for regional 60's monster movies, and THE LEGEND OF BLOOD MOUNTAIN is probably the 2nd or 3rd most obscure movie in my library. It's a weird one, too, being a straight horror movie that has as it's main character what I can only describe as a 50's burlesque comic. They seem to've shot the film thinking the guy by himself was funny, and just let the camera roll without really giving him anything to do. The second reel, in fact, is spent watching this guy listening to the radio, eating cookies in bed, and then having an utterly pointless dream sequence in which he does absolutely nothing. This bit of film is easily the most pointless filler material I have ever laid eyes on, which is a truly staggering statement! Once things get moving, though, it turns into a technically-crude-but-charming monster movie. Said monster is possibly the most unique movie monster I've ever seen, being part suit, part prosthetics, and part body paint! Always a plus, the film doesn't skimp on pretty girls in 60's Summer attire. One reel is missing from the only version ever released on video, saddled with the title "Demon Hunter" for some reason. Strangely, the film was re-edited and issued a decade later as a bogus Bigfoot documentary titled BLOOD BEAST OF MONSTER MOUNTAIN. This version does have some footage missing from the 60's print, but lacks the originality and charm of it's first incarnation. It replaced the screen's most intriguing monster with a typical sasquatch, and then tried to pass itself off as a dramatization of an actual event! If one had the equipment to do so, a fella could probably edit footage from both versions into a fuller print of THE LEGEND OF BLOOD MOUNTAIN. Of course, the problem the original film had was that it's first two reels (following the pre-credit sequence) are insufferable. Removing that mess, you'd be left with a fairly entertaining (if you're like me, anyway) little regional monster picture. By the way, there is an actual bleeding mountain in the movie, which is left unexplained in either version!

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