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Attack Of The 50 Foot Woman (1958)

DVD Cover (Warner Brother)
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Overall Rating 51%
Overall Rating
Ranked #3,195
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Nancy Archer is a rich socialite who is unhappily married to husband Harry who left her once but came back to her when he needed money. It hasn't stopped him from continuing his affair with Honey Parker and Nancy knows it. After a confrontation at a local bar, Nancy takes off in her car and has an encounter with a large sphere on the road. There have been rumors of UFOs in the area but no one will believe her. After a second encounter, Nancy grows to an amazing size. More than enough to get her revenge. --IMDb
Allison Hayes
Allison Hayes
William Hudson
William Hudson
Yvette Vickers
Yvette Vickers
Roy Gordon
Roy Gordon
George Douglas
George Douglas
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Review by Chad
Added: May 31, 2011
Damn, I love the fifties. I love the "big" movies, where filmmakers would simply take some sort of creature and have it exposed to radiation for an instant summer blockbuster. Take a couple of ants, make them fifty feet tall: bam, instant drive-in hit. Take some snakes, make them gigantic, bam, there's another one. Tonight's film goes one step further, putting forth the idea that if the above concept works, well, why not make a gorgeous woman huge and call it a movie? You've got the sci-fi angle and you've got the sex appeal all wrapped up in one character, and that's just what they did. The poster for this film is one of the most eye-catching displays of all time as a result, but unfortunately, the movie just didn't live up to it.

Nancy Archer (Allison Hayes) is the star of the show, an attractive young lady who loves her husband more than life itself and who also happens to be a multi-millionaire. Unfortunately for her, her husband Harry (William Hudson) doesn't love her back, and in fact, he only married her for her money. Who would have guessed? One night, the couple are out at a bar, when Nancy notices that Harry is flirting with the town slut in Honey Parker (Yvette Vickers), the woman the she suspects doubles as Harry's mistress of the night. She jumps in the car and tears out of there, driving off into the California desert. There, she almost runs into a "satellite" that has parked in the middle of the road. She instantly goes into hysterics, as is the norm for women back in the fifties, and this prompts a thirty-foot giant to step out of the satellite and come after her. She escapes and runs back to town, but sadly, Sheriff Dubbitt (George Douglas) and Deputy Charlie (Frank Chase) believes that she was merely drunk and imagined it.

Harry believes that she was drunk as well, and this gives him an idea: if he can convince her doctors that she is mentally unfit, why, she'll be locked up in an asylum and this will leave her money to him. Nancy realizes what he is up to, and she throws down a challenge: take her out into the desert so that the two of them can look for that satellite. If they find it, well, she isn't crazy and wasn't drunk, and her name will be cleared. If they don't find it, then yes, she is going crazy and should be locked up. Harry takes her up on it, they eventually find the satellite, and poor Nancy is exposed to the radiation coming off of it, causing her to transform into the incredible fifty-foot woman. What's the first thing a fifty-foot woman will do? Why, get revenge on her husband, who isn't even trying to hide his affair now.

See, here's the reason why I didn't enjoy the movie: you see a movie called Attack of the 50 Foot Woman and you take a look at that poster, and you expect to see a fifty-foot woman tearing shit up. Sure, you know that there's going to be some drama or some romance to get things moving, but you expect the latter half of the movie - or at least the last quarter - to revolve around this huge woman. That is not how the movie plays out. It runs for sixty-five minutes, and up until the last five minutes, all we see of this gigantic woman is her hand while she is chained up in her bedroom. When she finally busts loose, she wiggles an electric transformer, tears the roof off of a bar, picks up her husband, and is then killed. That's it: that's what you paid to see, and it was a disappointment even by fifties standards.

I will say this much for the film: considering what it was and how low the budget was, the acting was so much better than it had any right to be. Both of the leading ladies turned in great performances here, even knowing full well that they were doing it for a shitty little sci-fi flick. William Hudson was also pretty good in his role, and Frank Chase filled the comedic relief role decently enough.

I know it's a cult classic and yes, it does have a certain amount of cheese factor that makes it kind of entertaining from time to time, but a good movie? I just can't say that. The effects range from horrible up to "decent" (even though the giants are transparent for some reason), the acting is better than it should have been, and a fifty-foot woman manages to stay hidden from view for the entire running time. Blend all that together, and I guess that a 5/10 should do the trick.
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