My Top 5 Dinosaur Movies, other than Jurassic Park.

one million years BC pic 8

My Top 5 Dinosaur World Movies, other than Jurassic Park

In preparation for Jurassic World, you may want to catch up on the genre of Dinosaur films. For this list I am speaking of dinosaur worlds, not just single dinosaurs that have been awakened in modern times for the purpose of a film. Dinosaur worlds include; Islands, continents, planets, prehistoric times, underground caverns, etc. I’m also talking about real dinosaurs for the most part, animals that once roamed the earth, not fictional beasts created for sci-fi films.

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5) Planet of Dinosaurs (1977)
We got some beautifully crafted dinosaurs in this film. One of the final forays into stop-motion dinosaur extravaganzas, it is a cult favorite for dinosaur fans. The script and plot ain’t so great but the bevy of fantastic creatures make it worth a viewing.
Dinosaurs: Stegosaurus, Allosaurus, Rhedosaurus, Ceratopsian, Brontosaurus, Tyrannosaurus, Kentrosaurus, Allosaurus, and Struthiomimus

planet of dinosaurs dvd planet of dinosaurs pic 23

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4) The Land that Time Forgot (1978)

The dinosaurs in this film aren’t perfect but this film gets the nod for variety of species and prehistoric beasts. The dinos were scale rod-puppets which made interaction with humans minimal, the giant pterodactyl that carries off the caveman being the exception. A good story penned by Edgar Rice Burroughs lands this in the Top 5. Extra points for the awesome movie poster!
Dinosaurs: Mosasaurus, Plesiosaur, Diplodocus, Pterodactyl, two Allosaurus, two Styracosaurus, Ichthyostega,  Triceratops,  Ceratosaurus

the land that time forgot - poster the land that time forgot pic 19

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3) When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth (1970)
With Victoria Vetri running around in a dino hide bikini, it would be hard to take notice of the dinosaurs. However, these dinos are noticed because of their fabulous renditions in stop-motion artistry. The stop-motion dinos were the work of Jim Danforth. There’s not a lot of dinos in the film but they are top notch-Danforth’s work in this film rivals the greats, Harryhausen and O’Brien.
Dinosaurs: Plesiosaur, Chasmosaurus, Rhamphorhynchus, A carnivorous dinosaur based on the Scelidosaurus, (and it’s baby). 

when-dinosaurs-ruled-the-earth-movie-poster-1970 When Dinosaurs ruled the earth pic 6

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2) King Kong (1933)
This is the first mega dinosaur-land presented to the public at a time when most people didn’t have a clear picture of what dinosaurs looked like and were just discovering these creatures. The T. Rex is a fast moving, active beast as described by Charles R. Knight, not the slow sluggish reptiles other scientists were in favor of portraying. The film made Willis O’Brien the father of stop-motion special effects and giant monsters, influencing future directors and filmmakers, Ray Harryhausen, Ishiro Honda, Peter Jackson, Steven Speilberg, and Tim Burton, to name a few. Marcel Delgado built O’Brien’s models and was largely responsible for capturing the look O’Brien wanted for the dinos (and Kong).
Dinosaurs: Pteranodon, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Brontosaurus, Stegosaurus, Styracosaurus (edited out), Elasmosaurus and although he’s not a dino, King Kong

King Kong posterkong

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1) One Million Years BC (1966)
Although given moderate praise through the years, this film contains some of Ray Harryhausen’s most impressive dinosaurs. I think the special effects were overshadowed by Raquel Welch and her fur bikini – (the original furkini, accept no substitutes!). But take a look at the beautiful renditions of the Triceratops and Brontosaurus and you’ll see some master craftsmanship. I’d like to mention that the models were sculpted by Arthur G. Hayward with direction from Ray and designed from Ray’s artwork.
Dinosaurs: Archelon, Brontosaurus, Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, Triceratops, Pteranodon, Rhamphorhynchus

one-million-years-bc_thumb one million years BC pic 12

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Honorable Mentions:
Valley of Gwangi (1969)
Once again Harryhausen applies his talents to prehistoric beasts with great success.

Valley of Gwangi poster Valley-Of-Gwangi

 

Dinosaurs (2000)
Despite being a Disney film with talking dinos, it has some great scenes and dino imagery.

dinosaur 2000 poster dinosaur 2000 pic 1

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OK, want to see some more dino pics? Here ya’ go!

Because this post is about Dinosaurs, I’m going to refrain from posting yet another pic of Raquel in her fur bikini. But if you really want to see one look here!

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Movie Theater Displays of Days Gone By

theater MJY 1940s

Movie Theater Displays and Marquees

In the old days the major studios would put some fun displays together for the theaters. Here’s a look at some of those great designs and promotions.


And here’s some theater marquees with some classic films. Less promo but fun to see these films in theaters, some attracting big lines of movie fans.

Aurora King Kong Model Kit

King Kong Aurora Custom pic 15

This is my Aurora King Kong model kit

Before anyone screams blasphemy about all of the modifications I did on the kit, I’ll disclose that this is the Polar Lights, re-issue, not an original 1960’s Aurora.

King Kong Aurora Custom Head close up 3

I used the Bwain replacement head, which has an awesome Kong face with excellent detail.

I purchased the replacement head at Cult TV Mans website 🙂

Aurora King Kong Model Kit pic 1

I repositioned both arms into a more aggressive manner which entailed some sculpting and molding.

I moved Ann Darrow from the right hand to the left hand. This entailed some carving and sculpting to the left hand and filling in the right and to make it look like a fist.

Aurora King Kong Model Kit pic 10

Ann Darrow is revamped too, different hair, bigger bust, and her arm positions have been changed.

Watch the Video – Great music and talk about building the kit!  🙂

Thanksgiving For the Horror / Sci-fi fan of yesteryear

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Thanksgiving For the Horror / Sci-fi fan of yesteryear

Thanksgiving for me as a youngster always had a special feel and memories.

It wasn’t a holiday for children and us young ones always found it boring. Moms had their Hostess of the Home fanfare and Dads had their sports. It was the Holiday for adults.

Being the child I was, I managed to carve out a niche that got me through the day.

The day started with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Aside from the big balloons it was usually a snoozer. But immediately following on WPIX in NY, March of the Wooden Soldiers (aka: Babes in Toyland) was aired.

march-of-the-wooden-soldiers barnaby23

 

From their I would turn to W-OR, which for many years would air a few Kong films for the day. It would start with the classic, King Kong (1933) at 1:00. About 3 o’clock they would air Son of Kong (1933). And they would finish at 4:30 with Mighty Joe Young (1949). For breif reviews of these films, check out my post: The Legacy of Kong 

It turned my Thanksgiving day into a fun day of Fantasy Adventure!

The Top 5 Women in Dinosaur and Fantasy films from Yesteryear

My Top 5 Women in Dinosaur and Fantasy films from Yesteryear

(films 25 years and older)

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5) Jane Seymour – Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger – as Farah
If playing chess with an intelligent Mandrill isn’t enough, she comes face to face with a troglodyte, a giant walrus, and a saber tooth tiger.

4) Victoria Vetri – When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth – as Sanna
She escapes being sacrificed to the sun god, clashes with the dark-haired tribe, and eventually makes friends with a dinosaur, all while just barely keeping her tighter-than-a-glove bikini top on. (note: in the uncut version, the bikini top does come off.)

3) Caroline Munro – The Golden Voyage of Sinbad – as Margiana
The tattooed eye on her hand calls forth the great Cyclops centaur for a battle of good vs. evil. A handful of 1970’s Hammer horror films playing alongside Lee and Cushing and even bigger roles in At the Earth’s Core (Amicus) and Star Crash clinch the spot for her.

2) Fay Wray – King Kong – as Anne Darrow
She is the ultimate damsel in distress, taken by force, but enduring and surviving a savage world.

1) Raquel Welch – One Million Years BC – as Loana
It was the fur bikini that entranced the world. A young Raquel Welch becomes a star despite not a single word of dialogue in the film.

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Honorable mentions:

Jessica Lange – King Kong (1976) – as Dwan

King Kong 76

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Barbara Bach – Caveman (1981) – Lana

caveman promo cropped

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Tanya Roberts – Sheena, Queen of the Jungle (1984) – as Sheena

Sheena-Queen of the Jungle-1984

recommended by Bubbawheat, http://flightstightsandmovienights.com/

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Martine Beswick, also from One Million Years BC (1966)

martin beswick

suggested by Alharron

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Your suggestions for honorable mentions are welcome.

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Also check out:
My Top 5 Women in Sci-Fi flicks of yesteryear

I will be doing a Top Five Women in Horror flicks of Yesteryear soon…

Vintage Monster Magazines – Famous Monsters and beyond

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Vintage Monster Magazines – Famous Monsters and beyond

Famous Monsters – my collection

I started collecting Famous Monsters of Filmland Magazine when I was a wee lad. I had held on to my fave issues and recently purchased a few from eBay and other channels to replace ones that I lost or had deteriorated over time.

These are my two favorite issues:
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FM 114FM 108

The Godzilla/Toho special issue #114 and the King Kong special issue #108
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Also one of my fave issues below – it has seen better days:
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FM 39

Features Frankenstein Conquers the World, issue #39
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Two great Harryhausen issues #37 and # 117
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FM 37FM 117
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I also love this Gorgo issue # 50
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FM 50
I got this in mint condition
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King Kong 1976 issues:
FM 125FM 132

#125 and #132
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I discovered the world of monster movies and special fx thru the pages of Famous Monsters. Knowing how the movies were made did not detract from the films – instead it made me appreciate the craftmanship even more.
It was in the back of these FM Magazines of the 1960’s and 70’s that I discovered the fantstic Aurora Model Kits, bought an 8mm projector and monster movie film reels (leading to begging my mom for a 8mm movie camera) and obsessed over monster movie masks, movie posters and macabre products of the time.
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I recently purchased a new issue, July 2013, mainly because of the beautiful Cthulhu artwork on the cover. When I opened it they had 20 pages of the original Kong, too! I was sold.

FM 287
Famous Monsters #287
It’s not the same as the old issues when Forrest Ackerman was at the helm but I’m glad I picked this one up.
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Monsters of The Movies by Curtis Publishing

Monsters of the Movies only had 11 issues before they closed in the 1970s. It was close to the quality of Famous Monsters.
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MotM 1MOM 5 godzilla issueMotM 6

Issue #1 (King Kong) Issue # 5 (Godzilla) and issue # 6 (The Mummy)
This was one of my all time favorite depictions of a mummy

Monster Land

MonsterLand was around for a while but I didn’t like it as much as the others.
I only have one issue of Monster Land:
ML 16 ML 16 back cover

Kong and Harryhausen’s 7th Voyage in the same issue #16
it also had an interview with Peter Cushing
ML 16 gatefold
the center page (gatefold) was a color poster
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MM various
fm 108 114
Hope you enjoyed a look at my personal collection. Thanks for tuning in…
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Related posts:
Sci Fi Boys – documentary movie review

Horror art – Famous Monsters – cover art 

Aurora – model kit – w/conversion

Sci Fi Boys – Documentary (2006) – movie review

forrest j ackerman pteradactyl armature

Sci Fi Boys – Documentary (2006)

sci fi boys dvdThis documentary is as much a tribute to Forrest J. Ackerman and Famous Monsters of Filmland Magazine, as it is to Sci-fi films. You may be surprised to learn that it was Ackerman who coined the term “Sci-Fi.” It is a fitting tribute because Forry, along with good friends, Harryhausen, George Pal, and Ray Bradbury helped shape and push the genre of Sci-fi into the hearts and minds of young film fans who would later become the top directors, FX artists, and filmmakers in the world.

The film starts out with past footage of Forry making a speech. He says, “I am speaking to you from the year 1970…” a very ‘sci-fi sounding’ choice of words. He goes on to explain a bit of what makes sci-fi what it is. During the course of the documentary we hear from Peter Jackson, John Landis, Frank Darabont, Stephen Sommers, Harryhausen, Bradbury, Stan Winston, Rick Baker, Phil Tippet, and Dennis Muren amongst many others, talk about their Sci-Fi roots which often point to Famous Monsters magazine and the original 1933 movie King Kong. Bob Burns and Don Glut talk of their favorite Sci-Fi films and sci fi boys jacksoneras. Roger Corman speaks of William Castle and the wonderful sales pitch he would deliver for each of his films. Bob Burns talks about the creations of Paul Blaisdell in the 50’s sci-fi films and how Paul and his wife would assemble monsters on a shoe-string budget from items in his garage. There is a segment devoted to Harryhausen’s inaugural ‘Star’ on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, only yards from Grumman’s Theater, where, as a boy, he had seen the film that set the direction of his life, King Kong.

There is also a segment which features the amateur 8mm and Super 8mm films of Don Glut, Steve Johnson, Bob Burns and Fred Barton, as well as others, from their early years as boys looking to emulate their favorite sci-fi feature. The film shows the early Harryhausen projects as well, test footage for films that have never been made. There are some great photos of George Pal standing on the set of War of the Worlds, and clips of Forry’s eulogy at Pal’s funeral.
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Roger Corman                                                Metropolis

Near the end Steven Spielberg talks about the change over to CGI and the possibilities that change has unleashed. Dennis Muren from ILS talks of the early computer technology that started with the FM 117film 2001: A Space Odyssey, and how it influenced the making of Star Wars.  Sci Fi boys was put together by Paul Davids and he did an astounding job at presenting an interesting, and perfectly paced documentary. The dvd/blu-ray cover features artwork by Basil Gogas. The dvd itself includes bonus extras that are well worth the purchase for die hard fans.

This is a fantastic documentary and I would highly recommend it for every sci-fi, horror, and monster movie fan.

For more info, look here: Sci Fi Boys

Currently available on Netflix.
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sci fi boys muren FM 108
forrest j ackerman
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related articles:
The Aurora Monsters – documentary
Creature Features – Giant Robots
Creature Features – The ‘It’ Movies
My Top 10 Robots in Film 

Creature Features
Ray Harryhausen Tribute
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