The Deadly Mantis (1957) (Blu-ray Review)
DIRECTED BY: Nathan Juran
STARRING: Craig Stevens, Alix Talton, William Hopper
RATED: UR/REGION A/1:85/1080P/NUMBER OF DISCS 1
AVAILABLE FROM Scream Factory
What’s worse than a horde of locusts? A gigantic man-eating praying mantis, released from a million years of deep, frozen sleep and ready to claw its way to world domination! This menacing insect kills everything in its path while scientists and military men work feverishly to stop it. Craig Stevens (Abbott And Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde) stars as the commander in charge of putting an end to this beastly insect with William Hopper (20 Million Miles To Earth) as the paleontologist and Alix Talton (The Man Who Knew Too Much) as his beautiful assistant, a photojournalist, assigned to help in this epic battle between man and mantis!
There comes a time in a film lover’s life when you have to admit that every giant monster movie can’t be Godzilla. You also have to admit that not every flying monster movie can Mothra either. Here we have another one for those and the giant insect category with The Deadly Mantis. A movie that I will tell you right up front is a terrible movie. The only real question about this one here is if this movie is bad enough to enjoy anyway. Which I’m thinking the fact we have a Mystery Science Theater version of the movie on this disc should come to tell you about what we’re working with here. I’ll also admit that you might want to go with that version unless you are just glutton for some cinematic punishment. This is a dull one in a lot of ways. The main thing you get here is an example of how they were able to do some effects back in the old days.
That being said, some folks are fond of this one. I happen to think it takes things a little too long to get really rolling and nothing is too outrageously good or bad either way when it does finally get to the “good” parts. I don’t think the cast is that bad here and that might be the only real thing here besides the effects that I’ll give praise to having watched this one for the first time for this review. I do think Scream Factory did a fine job at the transfer and the extras, but still, at the end of the day, the movie isn’t anything that you can’t see done better in other movies out there. If you like Mystery Science Theatre 3000 you’ll probably want this for the episode over the movie.
– NEW 2K Scan Of The Original Film Elements
– NEW Audio Commentary With Film Historians Tom Weaver And David Schecter
– Mystery Science Theatre 3000 Episode “The Deadly Mantis” (02/22/97)
– Theatrical Trailer
– Still Gallery
QUALITY OF TRANSFER: 90%