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A couple of teenagers are reported missing in a small Texas town, and it is thought they eloped. Sheriff Jeff turns to his friend, Clarence Winstead, a garage mechanic and leader of a hot-rod gang for help. A series of tragic motor accidents occur and it becomes apparent that a giant gila monster is roaming the area and depleting the town of its citizens and passer-throughs, including two hot-rodding teen-agers. And might have plans on attending the BIG record-hop party. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Gordon McLendon, who owned a number of radio stations and theaters in Texas, was the uncredited executive producer and financier of this film. Some members of the McLendon family were given roles in this film. See more »
As the freight train crashes, you can plainly see the string pulling the engine off of the tracks. Once it goes off, the rest of the train follows. See more »
Where's Pat and Liz?
Maybe their car broke down?
Hey! I worked on that car myself!
That wouldn't make any difference if he goofed the speed shift or something!
And that squirrel is just the one that could do it!
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As a monster movie, this is far from the best, but as a look at life in 50's rural Texas, it's top notch. The settings are authentic and realistic and the people talk like real people. Especially good is Fred Graham as the kind-hearted Sheriff...the opposite of the way most cops were portrayed in teen movies. Don Sullivan is not bad at all as hero Chase, a decent kid who just happens to love racing fast cars. With the exception of the rich Dad, everybody in the movie seems decent.
As for our title monster, he's pretty sleepy looking, but I always thought Gila Monsters were pretty cool. The somber, eerie background music helps this one a lot. Speaking of which, some of Sullivan's singing is OK, but "Laugh, Little Children" should be taken out and shot.
If the effects had matched the rest of the movie, it would have been a minor classic. As it is, it's a fun "time capsule" type movie.
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