Dinosaurus! (1960) – Irvin S. Yeaworth jr.

DK Canada’s Monsters in the Movies brings me a Saturday matinee type bit of entertainment as I continue to explore the chapter on Dragons & Dinosaurs.

This one is delightfully cheesy, and was definitely designed to appeal to the younger viewers as the special effects combine everything from model work, stop-motion animation and rear screen projection.

Filmed in St. Croix (though it doesn’t make as much use of the location as it should) this piece of popcorn entertainment features an all-American hero in the lead, Bart (Ward Ramsey) who finds his excavation interrupted by resuscitated dinosaurs, and one neanderthal.

Bart and his construction crew, which employees a number of the locals, is working on dynamiting a bay, deepening its depths, so that they will be able to transform the picturesque area, and island into a port of call for ships of both the pleasure and business variety.

The dynamiting opens up a fissure in the ocean floor, releasing two frozen dinosaurs (and one caveman). They are hauled ashore, where everyone is sure they will help Bart, and the island turn a pretty penny, though it may hold up the expansion of the port.

ridethedinosaur

Unfortunately, the dinosaurs begin to thaw, and an unlikely lightning strike brings a brontosaurus, and a t-rex back to life!

Soon enough the dinos are wreaking havoc on the island, when the brontosaurus isn’t given rides to a young troublemaker, Julio (Alan Roberts) who not only befriended the vegetarian animal, but also the caveman (Gregg Martell).

The t-rex causes more problems and soon the climax comes along where they not only have molotov cocktails being tossed at the rampaging animal, until Bart confronts him with a digger from the construction site. The pair duke it out on a cliff-side like a pair of rock-em, sock-em robots until the t-rex, already dying from wounds inflicted on it, tumbles back into the sea.

This one is just a popcorn ride, there’s no big plot, there are no major character developments, and there is a lot of camp surrounding Martell’s Neanderthal.

Some of the effects work better than others, but at no point do you actually believe that these dinosaurs exist in the same space as the actors, but it definitely shows a progression of special effects as the imagination and creativity of filmmakers strive to bring the creatures to life.

There are more dinosaurs and dragons to come, and I cannot wait to see what DK Books’ Monsters in the Movies brings me next. Pick up a copy, and find something monstrous to watch tonight!

Dinosaurus1960

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