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Konga (1961)

Unrated | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 21 July 1961 (Ireland)
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Dr.Decker comes back from Africa after a year, presumed dead. During that year, he came across a way of growing plants and animals to an enormous size. He brings back a baby chimpanzee to ... See full summary »

Director:

John Lemont

Writers:

Aben Kandel (original story), Herman Cohen (original story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Gough ... Dr. Charles Decker
Margo Johns Margo Johns ... Margaret
Jess Conrad ... Bob Kenton
Claire Gordon ... Sandra Banks
Austin Trevor ... Dean Foster
Jack Watson ... Supt. Brown
George Pastell ... Prof. Tagore
Vanda Godsell ... Bob's Mother
Stanley Morgan ... Insp. Lawson
Grace Arnold ... Miss Barnesdell
Leonard Sachs Leonard Sachs ... Bob's Father
Nicholas Bennett Nicholas Bennett ... Daniel
Kim Tracy Kim Tracy ... Mary
Rupert Osborne Rupert Osborne ... Eric Kenton
Waveney Lee Waveney Lee ... Janet Kenton
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Storyline

Dr.Decker comes back from Africa after a year, presumed dead. During that year, he came across a way of growing plants and animals to an enormous size. He brings back a baby chimpanzee to test out his theory. As he has many enemies at home, he decides to use his chimp, 'Konga' to 'get rid of them'. Then Konga grows to gigantic proportions and reaks havoc all over the city of London!! Written by Graeme Huggan <hia95gh@sheffield.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Not since "King Kong"...has the screen exploded with such mighty fury and spectacle!

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 July 1961 (Ireland) See more »

Also Known As:

I Was a Teenage Gorilla See more »

Filming Locations:

Croydon, London, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Merton Park Studios See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Producer Herman Cohen first considered using "ape" actor Steve Calvert, who had worked with Cohen on Bride of the Gorilla (1951) and Bela Lugosi Meets a Brooklyn Gorilla (1952), but Calvert had retired from performing in his gorilla suit. Cohen turned to another renowned "ape" actor George Barrows, but only hired Barrows' gorilla costume, not Barrows himself. The actor Paul Stockman was instead chosen, based primarily on being a good fit for Barrows' costume. Barrows was annoyed when his gorilla costume was returned from England in bad shape. See more »

Goofs

Real world Venus Fly Traps seize their prey when hairs on the inside of their leaves are touched, and dissolve their prey over a long time. The huge mutated plants however are shown almost begging for meat treats like animals, and gulp as if swallowing their food. See more »

Quotes

Supt. Brown: Fantastic... There's a huge monster gorilla that's constantly growing to outlandish proportions loose in the streets!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Fantastic Fantasy Fright-o-Rama Show Vol. 1 (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Arabeske
(uncredited)
Music by Robert Schumann
Arranged by Gerard Schurmann
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Filmed in SpectaMation, no less.
4 July 2015 | by BA_HarrisonSee all my reviews

Konga is, for the majority of its running time, a mundane mad scientist movie; only in its closing moments does the film become the desperate King Kong rip-off that its derivative title suggests. But that doesn't improve matters much.

The deranged doctor in question is botanist Charles Decker (Michael Gough), who, having been lost in the jungles of Uganda for over a year, finally returns home to England with Konga, his pet chimpanzee (UK quarantine regulations clearly non-existent back in the '60s), plus several specimens of rare insectivorous plant-life. Using these plants, Decker concocts a formula designed to generate rapid growth in animals and tests his serum on Konga, with incredible results: the chimp not only increases in size, but also turns into a gorilla!

Having added a little something to his concoction to ensure obedience, Decker then proceeds to use Konga to remove anyone who has been getting in his way, starting with the troublesome dean at his university, followed by a rival scientist, and then Bob, jealous boyfriend of Sandra (Claire Gordon), the pretty student that the dirty old doctor has designs on (can't say I blame him though: she definitely stands out from the other girls in his class!).

When Decker informs his besotted assistant Margaret (Margo Johns) of his plans to dispose of Konga, and she subsequently overhears him telling Sandra that he has no more use for her, she releases Konga, giving him one last blast in the arm of Decker's serum. As a result, the ape grows bigger than a house, kills Margaret, grabs Decker, and goes on the rampage in Croydon High Street, before legging it to London to be shot at by the army. After wasting much of their ammo shooting at Big Ben, the soldiers adjust their sights and bring Konga crashing to the ground (but only after he has thrown Decker to his death).

Not only does Konga suffer from a dreadfully dull and derivative script, but this utterly abysmal monster movie doesn't even compensate by delivering a half decent creature, it's over-sized ape being nothing more than a man in a really bad gorilla suit (which, incidentally, is the same one used in several other dreadful films, including z-grade sci-fi clunker Robot Monster). Fans of very bad movies might get a kick out of the wonderfully daft carnivorous plants in Decker's greenhouse, the dated scenes where the groovy students get down to some cool tunes on their transistor, and Sandra's rather dangerous looking bra, but most viewers will find little to go ape over.


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