Thursday, January 5, 2017

She's Real and She's Spectacular, or Thoughts on Attack of The 50-Foot Woman

Unlike the glittering radioactive cloud The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957), Allison Hayes encounters a UFO in Attack of The 50-Foot Woman (1958) and meets a giant alien with hands like a Mardi Gras float.  As Nancy Archer, a wealthy alcoholic heiress prone to hysterical outbursts (it was the ‘50’s), nobody in the small California town believes her.  At the height of the Cold War paranoia, she keeps referring to the UFO as a satellite, but it really looks more like a translucent weather balloon.
A black and white, more adult themed Twilight Zone, Attack of The 50-Foot Woman is a cheesy slice of mid-century lifestyle complete with cocktails, cigarettes, sleeping pills and those fabulous cars, including Nancy’s 1958 Imperial Crown convertible.  Nancy’s husband and mistress are plotting to have her committed while even Nancy doubts her own sanity, but then she starts growing overnight.  The space giant, inexplicably, is first seen wearing a medieval tunic complete with a coat of arms.  Nancy gets a racy bed sheet bikini as she gets her revenge against her philandering husband and smashes up the town.
As a lady King Kong, a Queen Kong, if you will, the movie is a lowbrow empowerment metaphor written by Mark Hanna, who also coincidentally wrote The Amazing Colossal Man (1958, and guess what that movie was about).  The effects are naively primitive, mostly hazy superimposed scenes and more of those giant paper mâché hands, or Godzilla inspired miniature telephone poles with a regular sized Allison.
Watch out for Yvette Vickers, Playboy Playmate Miss July 1959, as Honey Parker, the mistress/good time girl.  Yvette Vickers also starred in Attack of the Giant Leeches (1959) and Hud (1963, with Paul Newman). 



my first novel?  thanks for asking:)  it’s a the first book in a 4-volume supernatural martial arts series chock full of killer kung-fu witches, haunted carnivals, punk rock assassins, and a 24-hour diner with the best pie in town…
read for free on kindle unlimited or buy the paperback, available at fine bookstores everywhere (amazon).