The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954)

Article #21 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 4-5-2001
Posting date: 8-19-2001

A group of naturalists find themselves trapped in a lagoon on the Amazon river, and at the mercy of a strange fish-man creature.

This movie is considered one of Universal’s classics, and is the first to feature the famous Gill-man creature, the only monster of theirs during the era to inspire sequels. I was fortunate enough to catch this movie in 3D during the revival of that fad in the early eighties; though the movie is strong enough to stand on its own, I found that the 3D did indeed give it a little extra value.

However, I’ve always been somewhat disappointed by this movie. The love angle has never really worked for me, and during my initial posting of this movie, I made the unfortunate suggestion that this aspect of the movie should have been dropped, a comment which netted a very strong degree of negative reaction as you might expect. That it would have stripped the creature of one of his most important character traits, I will readily admit, but I still don’t feel it works as well as I’d like in this movie, though I have no problem of that sort with the immediate sequel. I will retract the comment that the creature should have been left unseen until the end of the movie, though, as someone made the point that the costume is truly amazing and shouldn’t be kept under wraps, a comment I do agree with. At any rate, the disappointment still remains; put it in the category of those movies that I wish I liked more than I actually do.


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