Monster from Green Hell (1957)

Giant wasp with a lot of hairs up its nostrils!
This giant wasp has got a lot of hairs up its nostrils!

This science fiction creature feature was directed by Kenneth G. (THE SPLIT) Crane, written by Louis (I MARRIED A MONSTER FROM OUTER SPACE) Vittes and Endre Bohem, and stars Jim (THE DAY TIME ENDED) Davis, Robert (I WAS A TEENAGE WEREWOLF) Griffin, Joel Fluellen, Barbara Turner and Eduardo Ciannelli.

The story centres on scientists, armed with grenades, trekking across Africa to find the wasps from a failed rocket experiment… that have turned into mutated giants!

US lobby card
US lobby card

The flick features lots of footslogging scenes. There’s so much walking! These sequences feature the main characters wearing Victorian-era clothing… so that the filmmakers can match the shots with bigger-scale stock footage scenes taken from 1939’s STANLEY AND LIVINGSTONE!

Jim (DALLAS) Davis wears old fashioned explorer gear so that stock footage from STANLEY AND LIVINGSTONE can be used in this movie
Jim (DALLAS) Davis wears old fashioned explorer gear so that stock footage from STANLEY AND LIVINGSTONE can be used in this movie!

And after all that bloody trudging across Africa… the scientists are actually unable to kill the wasps with their grenades during the finale! Yes, the protagonists fail in their mission! But then… an erupting volcano fortunately intervenes and this wipes the critters out. How very convenient!

Giant wasp!
Giant wasp!

The plot for MONSTER FROM GREEN HELL is, as you may have guessed from my comments above, not too hot… but I kinda like the beasties!

Huge insects on the march!
Huge insects on the march!

These creatures are a bit toy-like, but a certain amount of effort was put into them: stop-motion puppets (built by Wah Chang and animated by Gene Warren), plus a full-scale prop head and pincer, are used to bring the bugs to life on-screen. Actually, the full-scale bug head, with swivelling compound eyes, is quite impressive. So it’s a pity the movie didn’t utilise it more.

The full-size monster wasp head model was pretty cool!
The full-size monster wasp head model was pretty cool!

One scene features a stop-motion snake...
One scene features a stop-motion snake…
...and the snake gets skewered by one of the wasps!
…and the snake gets skewered by one of the wasps!

MONSTER FROM GREEN HELL was released on December 12th, 1957 in a double bill with HALF HUMAN.

Check out some posters for the movie…

US insert poster
US insert poster
UK quad poster
UK quad poster
US half sheet
US half sheet
Italian locandina poster
Italian locandina poster
US double bill one sheet poster
US double bill one sheet poster
US double bill three sheet poster
US double bill three sheet poster
Italian poster
Italian poster
This Argentinean poster seems to be suggesting the movie actually features some kind of merman!

A newspaper ad…

'Free with each admission - a poster size blow-up of the monster!'
‘Free with each admission – a poster size blow-up of the monster!’

Here’s the pressbook for the MONSTER FROM GREEN and HALF HUMAN double bill…

Above: some of the pages from the pressbook
Above: some of the pages from the pressbook

And here’s the movie theatre herald (ad flyer) for the double bill of MONSTER FROM GREEN HELL and HALF HUMAN…

'Nightmare thrills beyond belief!'
‘Nightmare thrills beyond belief!’
'Meet the monsters face-to-face!'
‘Meet the monsters face-to-face!’

One last look at the wicked wasps…

Bzzzzzzz!
Bzzzzzzz!

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