Guest Movie Review: The Giant Claw

By Eli Sanchez
Guest Contributor
Silver Screen Capture

eligiantclawFred F. Sears pseudo B-Movie UFO/Atomic Age film The Giant Claw (C-) combines the elements of ne’er-do-well acting performances combined with the laughable high wire act of a slightly well-budgeted Ed Wood film. The story follows an engineer (Jeff Morrow) and a mathematician (Mara Corday) as co-workers on a flight test checking instruments out in the middle of the desert for the military. It takes roughly about 30 minutes when we actually see the “Giant Claw.”  It is essentially science gone horribly wrong as it’s a grotesque combination of a turkey vulture, a buzzard and a body-type similar to an ostrich.   It swoops down on unsuspecting aircraft and dislodges the pilots before having a mid-air snack. Military-grade weapons are ineffective towards this giant menace with wings; but at some point, the bird has apparently molted and its feathers are of an unknown origin. Yes, this bird is extra-terrestrial as science has revealed and moreover, the bird emits anti-matter.  So, now that we’re all confused and now knee-deep into a Star Trek narrative! The film is rife with unintentional one-liners such as “General…hand me my pants will ya?” and not to mention loaded with stock footage from aerial testing and people running from danger. The acting often seems to be read off of a cue card and written by someone with Roget’s Thesaurus at the ready. The film is average but falls into that “It’s so bad it’s good” category of B-Movies from the 1950’s and probably yielded a lot more shock value in 1957 as it does now; which is barely above a bad off-Broadway marionette production of Hamlet.

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I've reviewed films for more than 20 years. Current movie reviews of new theatrical releases and direct-to-video or streaming films are added weekly to the Silver Screen Capture movie news site. Many capsule critiques originally appeared in expanded form in my syndicated Lights Camera Reaction column.

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Posted in 1957, Eli Sanchez

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