Leave it to B movie mogul Herman Cohen (I WAS A TEENAGE WEREWOLF) to give us two movies for the price of one low budget effort and that's what KONGA is. The first hour of the film is remarkably well done with an intelligent script (under the circumstances) and a creative use of color for the background sets. The unique carnivorous plants are cleverly done and the movie is professionally shot by celebrated cameraman Desmond Dickinson (HORROR HOTEL/CITY OF THE DEAD). Add to that an increasingly demented performance by Michael Gough as the mad doctor and a study in feminine frustration from Margo Johns as his assistant and you had the makings of a true classic. However once the "gorilla" enters the picture, it, as the Brits would say, "goes straight into the crapper".
I don't have any qualms about them using a guy in a gorilla suit but this is the worst gorilla suit I have ever seen. It was borrowed from celebrated "apeman" George Barrows who should have been hired because...
In the last of the successful co-productions between American International Pictures (AIP) and producer Herman Cohen comes Konga (1961), which Herman not only co-producer, but also shared in the writing credits. Some of their most famous collaborations included I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957) and I Was a Teenage Frankenstein (1957), neither of which, as I write this, are available as of yet on DVD, but should be (Konga was produced with the working title I Was a Teenage Gorilla)...anyway, directed by John Lemont (The Frightened City), the film stars Michael Gough, who appeared in a number of Cohen's features including Horrors of the Black Museum (1959), Black Zoo (1963), Berserk! (1968), but many movie goers will probably recognize him from some of his later films, including his appearances in the various Batman films as Bruce Wayne's butler Alfred Pennyworth. Also appearing is Margo Johns (This Is My Street), Jess Conrad (The Assassination Bureau), Claire Gordon (Beat Girl), and...
This was originally put out on VHS as part of the Midnite Movie series, but in order to cash in on Kong-mania, Sony is putting it out as a solo release.
Dr. Decker comes back from Africa with a secret way of growing plants and animals to huge sizes. He decides to make a chimp huge so that he can take care of his enemies. Konga becomes enormous and attacks London. That's right - giant ape rampages in London.
If you're going to go Big Ape crazy on DVD in the season of the Kong, this is essential for your collection.
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