Entertainment Magazine

#1,635. The Deadly Mantis (1957)

Posted on the 07 February 2015 by Dvdinfatuation
#1,635. The Deadly Mantis  (1957)
Directed By: Nathan Juran
Starring: Craig Stevens, William Hopper, Alix Talton
Tag line: "A Thousand Tons of Horror! From A Million Years Ago ..."
Trivia: The first stock footage of the aircraft carrier is the USS Antietam, CV-36, the first US carrier with an angled deck
One of the things that piqued my interest about The Deadly Mantis, a 1957 giant bug movie, was that it was directed by Nathan Juran. In the years following this film’s release, Mr. Juran would helm a trio of pictures that featured the special effects wizardry of Mr. Ray Harryhausen: 20 Million Miles to Earth, The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (the best of Harryhausen’s Sinbad series), and the underrated First Men in the Moon. While he did suffer the occasional misstep along the way (a la Attack of the 50 Foot Woman), Juran would go on to establish himself as one of the fantasy genre’s most reliable filmmakers, and with The Deadly Mantis, I was anxious to see what he’d bring to the table.
The trouble begins when a team of U.S. military personnel stationed in Northern Canada, part of the country’s widespread Early Warning System, fail to respond to radio calls. Col. Joe Parkman (Craig Stevens) heads up an investigation, and what he finds is that the entire base has been destroyed, with no sign whatsoever of any survivors. Soon after, a military plane, sent to check out a strange blip on the radar, crash-lands, killing everyone on board. It’s at the sight of this disaster that Col. Parkman uncovers his first bit of evidence: an object that looks like a piece of a humongous claw. Dr. Nedrick Jackson (William Hopper), a paleontologist working for the National History Museum, believes the claw came from a gigantic praying mantis, and, along with Marge Blaine (Alix Talton), editor of the museum’s magazine, he heads north to lend his assistance in tracking down the creature, which, after being trapped in the arctic ice for thousands of years, is quickly making its way to the United States border.
The opening scenes of The Deadly Mantis look as if they were lifted from a documentary, with Juran utilizing military stock footage to help explain the origins of the United States’ Early Warning radar system, which stretches all the way to the North Pole. From there, the action shifts to the icy regions of Northern Canada, where the creature first makes its presence known. Initially, the cause of all this mysterious destruction remains off-screen, but before long the mantis is front and center (though it doesn’t look anywhere near as impressive as the ants in Them or the title monster in Tarantula, this mantis is far from the worst giant creature in cinema history). Much of the film’s second half borrows heavily from the movies that preceded it; like the ants in Them and the squid from It Came From Beneath the Sea, the mantis brings its destructive power to a major metropolitan area (in this case, Washington D.C.), and the decision to throw a single female character into the mix with a bunch of love-starved men results in a number of uncomfortable scenes. But thanks to director Juran, who keeps things moving along at a brisk pace, The Deadly Mantis rises above these issues, and in the end proves to be a fun, spirited entry in the ‘50s giant bug sub-genre.

You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • 6 Ways To Be A Business Leader As Well As A Developer

    Ways Business Leader Well Developer

    Almost every entrepreneur starts their journey by developing a solution, based on their idea of a new technology or required service. These idea and developer... Read more

    The 22 April 2018 by   Martin Zwilling
  • Salone 2018 & Milan - Impressions

    Salone 2018 Milan Impressions

    A glimpse to the atmosphere and my impressions. Central Station Milan Beautiful details Along with the centuries old architectural beauties it is also the... Read more

    The 22 April 2018 by   Trendoffice
  • Songs from '78: "King Tut"

    Songs from '78: "King Tut"

    Yes, my focus here is on all the great pop and rock that laid foundation for my radio addiction, 40 years ago. But why not include a joke song like Steve... Read more

    The 22 April 2018 by   Russellarbenfox
  • Do i Need a Visa for Dubai?

    Do I need a visa for Dubai?. This is a question you should answer. Moving to Dubai with our detailed guide for expatriates. With years of experience in the... Read more

    The 22 April 2018 by   Dubai City Company
  • Indulgeo Essentials Rose Gold Oil Vs TS Cosmetics 24K Gold Elixir

    Indulgeo Essentials Rose Gold Cosmetics Elixir

    | REVIEW COMPARISON Hello my lovely people out there !!! So after a long wait, I am finally sitting down to review and compare the two most famous gold... Read more

    The 22 April 2018 by   Khadija Beauty
  • A Parable


    Once upon a time, in a land far, far away, there was a holiday known as Earth Day. Now, Earth Day was a poor holiday. She didn’t prostitute herself to... Read more

    The 22 April 2018 by   Steveawiggins
  • Here We Go Again!

    Here Again!

    Despite a not-so-good garden last year (deer, bunnies, blight, and bugs,) I found myself at it again yesterday, setting out parsley and thyme, kale and... Read more

    The 22 April 2018 by   Vickilane