• Godmonster Of Indian Flats

    Godmonster Of Indian Flats
    Released by: AGFA
    Released on: July 10th, 2018.
    Director: Frederic Hobbs
    Cast: Christopher Brooks, Stuart Lancaster, Peggy Browne, Erica Gavin
    Year: 1973
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    The Movie:

    Written and directed by the late, great Frederic Hobbs, 1973’s Godmonster Of Indian Flats introduces us to a man named Eddie (Richard Marion). He works almost exclusively with sheep, leading the simple life of a Nevada-based shepherd. His life changes when he heads into Reno and hits a jackpot and winds up being latched onto be a few shifty characters (one of whom is the lovely and talented Erica Gavin) out to pilfer his winnings. Eddie doesn’t come across as the sharpest knife in the drawer, and before you know it, he’s been swindled and, after making a stink about it, kicked out of the saloon by the cops. With nothing else to do, he heads back to his sheep and spends the night amongst them, having a completely bizarre dream in the process.

    The next morning he’s found there by Professor Clemens (E. Kerrigan Prescot) lying beside a rather large glob of… something. It might be wool. Either way, Clemens is curious as to what this is and so he takes it back to his place for further examination. While this is going on, the town mayor, Mayor Charles Silverdale (Stuart Lancaster!), is dealing with a persistent cityslicker Barnstable (Christopher Brooks) who is in town with the hopes of buying up all of the mining rights in the area. This happens while the town is having some sort of festival that involves people shooting things with pistols and a guy’s dog playing dead, then having a funeral complete wit ha dog-sized coffin in the local church.

    But wait… there is a monster in this movie, right? Right! That glob that Clemens discovered has grown into something that looks like a mutated sheep. He keeps it in a glass incubator of sorts in his lab and pokes it with a stick now and then. Eventually, the monster breaks free of Clemens and heads on into town where it wreaks a moderate amount of havoc, mostly scaring kids and harassing hippie chicks like Clemens’ pretty assistant Mariposa (Karen Ingenthron), who just might be a little sweet on good old Eddie.

    A reasonably stupefying affair, Godmonster Of Indian Flats is all over the place. The movie spends quite a bit of time dealing with Silverdale and Barnstable’s disputes, even going so far as to have Barnstable set up for a crime he didn’t commit so that hey mayor can be rid of him. How much you appreciate these fairly length subplots will depend entirely on your appreciation for Stuart Lancaster. If you’re a fan of this Russ Meyer regular, immortalized for his role as the old man in Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!, you’ll get a kick out of seeing him do his thing here. Subtlety wasn’t exactly one of Lancaster’s strong points, so expect some pretty serious scenery chewing from him – the kind of scenery chewing that makes characters like his in movie’s like Hobbs’ so fun. The rest of the cast deliver some pretty questionable performances, Marion in particular kind of sleepwalks through the whole thing, but Ingenthron (who also worked with Hobbs on his earlier films Alabama’s Ghost and Roseland) is cute, even if her performance isn’t exactly deep.

    And then there’s the monster. The Godmonster itself kind of looks like Snuffleupagus from Sesame Street as it lumbers around and just sort of proves to be a pain in everyone’s collective ass rather than much of a threat to anyone’s life. The beast is hardly the killing machine you’d expect it to be, but then, it’s a mutated sheep…


    Godmonster Of Indian Flats arrives on a 50GB Blu-ray disc courtesy of AGFA who offer up the film in a ‘new 4K transfer from the only surviving 35mm theatrical print.’ The image is presented in 1.33.1 fullframe which would appear to be how it was shot. As you might expect, the elements are a bit worse for wear, but more than watchable. Print damage is heavier in the opening credits than in the rest of the movie but you’ll see it pop up again here and there. Colors look okay, if a bit faded, but detail is quite strong and there’s a reasonable amount of depth here. Like a lot of the AGFA/Something Weird Video releases so far, it’s a case of doing the best you can with what’s available – and the fact that these films are being preserved, even if it is in less than perfect shape, is a good thing indeed.

    The English language DTS-HD Mono track is on par with the video, in that it’s imperfect but more than serviceable. There’s some hiss here and there, the occasional pop and a few instances of sibilance but the levels are properly balanced and the dialogue is easy enough to understand. There are no alternate language options or subtitles offered on the disc.

    The main extra on the disc is the inclusion of a bonus movie in the form of 1975’s The Legend Of Bigfoot, presented in a transfer taken from a ‘new 2K scan from an original theatrical print.’

    Bigfoot was hot stuff in the seventies, and 'documentary' filmmaker Harry Winer was smart enough to tap into this phenomenon when he co-wrote and filmed his supposed documentary, The Legend Of Bigfoot which was released in 1976. While we now know that half of the supposed proof behind the bigfoot sittings of the decade of disco were a load of poop, at the time it seemed almost a sure thing that hey, maybe there are sasquatch out there – it's this potential that Winer tries to cash in on with his film wherein he attempts to explain some of the myths behind all of this.

    In the film, famed animal tracker Ivan Marx and his wife Peggy take us along on a journey through the thick woods where they claim that the sasquatch resides. We learn that Marx had most of his experience tracking down grizzly bears in the Pacific Northwest and other dangerous beasts, which makes him the right man to take down bigfoot. From there we get a chance to check out Marx's charming Volkswagen Beatle as he drives around talks a lot before finally we're shown what is supposed to be actual footage of Bigfoot himself running around in the woods.

    While this film sheds next to no new light at all on the mystery of the sasquatch, and the supposed footage of the critter himself in action is murky, mildly out of focus and shot from so far away that it could easily be Peggy in a monkey suit, The Legend Of Bigfoot is never the less an entertaining little movie. It's not a good film, in that it doesn't really explain much of anything and it isn't very well made, but it is at least a fun watch as Ivan Marx is obviously really into himself which makes him quite the unintentionally hilarious host for this hoax.

    Additionally, aside from Marx's uber macho screen presence, the film also does a good job of showing off a lot of the scenic beauty of the forests in and around Oregon and Washington. Look at this one as more of a really dated travelogue than a mind-blowing expose on bigfoot and you'll come away mildly amused.

    From there, dig into the three ‘Berserker shorts from the Something Weird vaults’ that have been included, the first of which is Strange Sightings, a thirty-six-minute film that was executive produced by Dr. Frank E. Stranges and produced/directed by Merle S. Gould! After the hand drawn opening credits we meet up with some participants in a hearing on alleged UFO activity, the involvement of a fake minister, and the UFO eccentricities of our personal narrator and a guy named Fred! It’s mostly just weirdos in suits sitting around a pool talking about aliens but occasionally we cut to interviews with people who believe in space people, such as a skinny guy on a rooftop, and a guy who wears a helmet named Carl who claims to have actually been abducted and other such experts in the field. NOT THE END. Goofy!

    The next short is School Bus Fires, a twenty-five minute piece written and directed by Gene Starbecker and narrated by a Rod Serling-esque narrator who fills us in on what happened to a certain American school bus full of not-so-decent American children when an act of vandalism and a stolen cigarette lighter wreak havoc and mechanical failure results in a…. school bus fire in the middle of nowhere. Whiskey swilling redneck play into this too – there are all manner of things that could cause a fire on a school bus! This then turns into a weird training video that explains what you’ll have to do should you ever find yourself on a school bus set ablaze. Lots of footage of dumb sixties kids, close ups of bus parts, very controlled looking fires, and footage of people evacuating buses makes up the bulk of this one. Check it out – you could save a life… but hopefully you’ll never have to use the knowledge you’ll gain from this one.

    The third and final short is White Gorillas, a ten-minute look into the plight of the titular creature that lives in Africa near the Congo, deep in the ‘Dark Continent’ on the fringe of gorilla territory inhabited by a tribe of natives. Here some very white explorer/hunter types and their woefully stereotypical black guide poke about the jungle, set up camp and do their thing while the titular animal peeks in on a pretty gal while she sleeps causing her father and the other white guys to get very upset. The gorilla itself is clearly a guy in a cheap suit, which is awesome, and I’m not convinced for a second that this is taking place in Africa and not somewhere like Florida.

    But that’s not all! In the ‘Rampaging monster trailers from the AGFA vaults’ section we find vintage theatrical promo spots for such classics as Creature From Black Lake, Grizzly, The Mysterious Monsters, South Of Hell Mountain and Jerry Warren’s mighty Man Beast!

    Outside of that, we get some keen menus and chapter selection options, as well as some nice reversible cover art featuring an all new illustration by Shana Cleveland.

    The Final Word:

    The Godmonster Of Indian Flats is ridiculous but if you get off on Stuart Lancaster and bad monsters, you’re bound to get a kick out of it. AGFA’s presentation is decent enough considering the source, and it’s got some great extras on it too. All in all, a really fun release of a really fun movie.

    Click on the images below for full sized Blu-ray screen caps!

    Comments 2 Comments
    1. C.D. Workman's Avatar
      C.D. Workman -
      Though I have the old DVD release of GODMONSTER OF INDIAN FLATS, I was going to get this anyway for THE LEGEND OF BIGFOOT. But those shorts really seal the deal. Thanks for the review and the screen caps, Ian. This has moved up in priority on my to-get list!!!!
    1. bgart13's Avatar
      bgart13 -
      Goddamn, I love GODMONSTER OF INDIAN FLATS! This is such a goofy release.