The Astounding She-Monster (1957) - The Hunt for Edward D. Wood, Jr.
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Original Poster

The Astounding She-Monster - VHS, DVD
a.k.a. The Mysterious Invader

GET THIS MOVIE -> (opens in window)
Directed by Ronald V. Ashcroft
Written by Frank Hall & Ronald V. Ashcroft (uncredited)
Uncredited "creative consultation" by Edward D. Wood, Jr.
Wood regulars
Kenne Duncan

Additional cast
Al Avalon
Ewing Miles Brown
Robert Clarke
Scott Douglas
Marilyn Harvey
Shirley Kilpatrick
Jeanne Tatum

Plot
A young socialite, Margaret Chaffee (Harvey) is kidnapped by hoodlum Nat Burdell (Duncan), his stooge Brad Conley (Brown) and his drunken moll, Esther Malone (Tatum). Meanwhile, a strange object has fallen from the sky near the home of geologist Dick Cutler (Clarke). When the kidnappers' car crashes, they try to hole up at the scientist's home, only to realize that there's something out there...
'Wood'-ness
This comes behind only The Unearthly, Barely Legal Lesbian Vampires and Screwed when it comes to having a definable but weak connection to Ed. According to Nightmare of Ecstasy by Rudolph Grey, Ed helped his friend Ronnie Ashcroft during the making of this film. He gave advice and suggested story ideas. Although no one claims that Ed had an actual hand in writing the film, his influence is definitely felt.

The plot has similarites to Ed's Plan 9 from Outer Space, with its supreme alien race overlooking the Earth and deciding its fate. There are many "Ed moments" in the direction as well. One can almost picture Ed standing behind Ashcroft saying "No one will notice it was night in the last shot, this is fine." And although the dialogue lacks Ed's touch, the characters are very much in the Ed Wood mold.
Best Line
"Our young society lady has gotten up on her social register." - Nat Burdell
File Under
Apocrypha, Crime, Sci-Fi

VIDEO RELEASES

THE ASTOUNDING SHE-MONSTER

This is the title by which the film is most commonly known. It has had few major releases.

VHS

The Astounding She-Monster (SF Classic Coll.)From an unknown distributor's "Science Fiction Classic Collection".

The Astounding She-Monster (Sinister Cinema)A release from Sinister Cinema

The Astounding She-Monster (englewood)From Englewood Entertainment. Part of the Wade Williams "Science Fiction Gold" collection.

Opening has been altered to reflect current copyright ownership: i.e. "Wade Williams Distribution".

The quality of the transfer is excellent, much better than most of Ed's movies.

The only truly annoying aspect of this edition is the flagrantly innacurate "stills" from the movie on the box. They depict the "She-Monster" in several sexy scenes, but she isn't even actually in the scenes depicted.

I realize this kind of thing was common back then, but there's no need for it now.

PROS: This is pretty much your only choice if you want the movie on VHS.
CONS: Packaging is garish. Priced higher than the DVD in most places.


The Astounding She-Monster (Hypnotic)

Manufacturer: Hypnotic Video
Video Format: NTSC
Comments:


DVD

The Astounding She-Monster (DVD)The DVD release from Image Entertainment.

This is just about as bare bones a DVD as you can get. It's the movie, the trailer and that's about it.

PROS: Clear transfer on DVD. Less expensive than the VHS version.
CONS: Has no significant new features for the DVD.



The Astounding She-Monster (DVD)A DVD release from Avenue One, from Australia.

It appears to be identical in content to the Image DVD.


THE MYSTERIOUS INVADER

This is the original UK title for The Astounding She-Monster. I have found no mass market releases under this name.

The Mysterious InvaderHere is a publicity photo used for the release under the title The Mysterious Invader



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