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The Giant Gila Monster (1959)

Passed  -  Horror  -  27 November 1962 (Mexico)
3.2
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Ratings: 3.2/10 from 2,398 users  
Reviews: 98 user | 40 critic

A giant lizard terrorizes a rural Texas community with a heroic teenager attempting to destroy the creature.

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Writers:

(original story), (screenplay)
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Title: The Giant Gila Monster (1959)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Don Sullivan ...
Fred Graham ...
Sheriff Jeff
Lisa Simone ...
Lisa
Shug Fisher ...
Old Man Harris
Bob Thompson ...
Mr. Wheeler
Janice Stone ...
Missy Winstead
Ken Knox ...
Horatio Alger 'Steamroller' Smith
Gay McLendon ...
Mom Winstead
Don Flournoy ...
Gordy
Cecil Hunt ...
Mr. Compton
Stormy Meadows ...
Agatha Humphries
Howard Ware ...
Ed Humphries
Pat Reeves ...
Rick
Jan McLendon ...
Jennie
Jerry Cortwright ...
Bob
Edit

Storyline

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 <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Only Hell could breed such an enormous beast. Only God could destroy it!

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 November 1962 (Mexico)  »

Also Known As:

Gila el monstruo gigante  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$138,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

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 »

Goofs

Just before the train crash, there's a shot of Shug Fisher, playing Old Man Harris, in his car, reacting to the sight of the Giant Gila Monster. Reflected in the windshield is director Ray Kellogg giving Fisher the cue to turn his head. See more »

Quotes

Sheriff Jeff: Have you heard the reports of a "giant lizard"?
Mr. Wheeler: Yes, but it's just not possible.
Sheriff Jeff: Well, why not? There have been giants before!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cinemassacre's Monster Madness: The Screaming Skull (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

The Mushroom Song
(uncredited)
(aka "Laugh, Children, Laugh")
Composed and Performed by Don Sullivan
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Good-spirited drive-in fare.
18 April 2002 | by (Lancaster, Pennsylvania) – See all my reviews

The Giant Gila Monster is another creature feature from Ray Kellogg (The Killer Shrews) that usually gets passed over with bad reviews. The story is about a giant, people-eating gila monster, which usually lurks in the thick brush near an isolated community. The main character, Chase Winston, (Don Sullivan) is a teen leader, car mechanic, and rockabilly/folk singer who sort of reminds me of singer Jimmie Rodgers. The acting is fine to passable for this type of low-budget movie, and the film is well shot. The Giant Gila Monster may be too slow for younger audiences used to today's action-packed fare, but for older audiences it might be a fun reminder of the era in which it was made. The music is creepy and nicely captures the mood of the isolated areas. The special effects (like the gila monster attacking a wrecked train) may bring on some good laughs. Throw in some rock & roll, teen lingo, a French exchange student (Lisa Simone, who was also in Missile To The Moon), a big city disc jockey, and some hot rods, and you've got a late 50's, drive-in flick which can be easily enjoyed for the type of movie it is.


5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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