The Amazing Colossal Man is a 1957 black-and-white science fiction film, directed by Bert I. Gordon and starring Glenn Langan. The film revolves around a 60 foot mutant man produced as the result of an atomic accident.
Distributed by American International Pictures (AIP) at the top of a program double-bill with The Cat Girl, the film was followed by a sequel, War of the Colossal Beast, which appeared in 1958. The film and its sequel appeared on Mystery Science Theater 3000.
Langan plays Lt. Col. Glenn Manning, an officer in the U.S. Army who suffers serious burns to over 90% of his body following an inadvertent exposure to plutonium radiation from a bomb blast. Manning miraculously survives the explosion and his burns completely heal, but the radiation causes him to abnormally grow into a 60-foot-tall giant. At this size, his heart is unable to supply sufficient blood to his brain and he gradually goes insane.
Army doctors attempt to halt and reverse Manning's growth with a formula, but after getting injected with the cure, the colonel grabs the needle and spears one of the doctors with it, killing him on the spot. Manning then escapes from confinement, "kidnaps" his girlfriend, Carol Forrest (played by Cathy Downs), and wreaks havoc in Las Vegas before being cornered by the Army at the Hoover Dam. After releasing Carol he is shot and appears to fall to his death in the Colorado River.
|Glenn Langan||Lt. Col. Glenn Manning|
|Cathy Downs||Carol Forrest|
|William Hudson||Dr. Paul Linstrom|
|Larry Thor||Maj. Eric Coulter, MD|
|James Seay||Col. Hallock|
|Frank Jenks||Truck Driver|
|Russ Bender||Richard Kingman|
|Jimmy Cross||Sergeant at reception desk|
|June Jocelyn||Nurse Wilson|
|Stanley Lachman||Lt. Cline|
|Harry Raybould||MP at Main Gate|
|Jean Moorhead||Woman in Bathtub|
|Scott Peters||Sgt. Lee Carter|
|Myron Cook||Capt. Thomas|
|Michael Harris||Police Lt. Keller|
|Bill Cassady||Lt. Peterson|
|Dick Nelson||Sgt. Hansen|
|Edmund Cobb||Dr. McDermott|
|Diana Darrin||Hospital Receptionist|
|Lyn Osborn||Sgt. Taylor|
|Jack Kosslyn||Lieutenant in briefing room|
|William Hughes||Bombsite Control Officer|
|John Daheim||Soldier (uncredited)|
|Judd Holdren||Robert Allen (uncredited)|
|Harold Miller||Official (uncredited)|
References in popular culture
- The film and its sequel have been referenced in several comedy productions, including the television series Mystery Science Theater 3000 and an episode of Robot Chicken when a large bald giant, wearing a sarong as a diaper, is struck in the crotch with a wrecking ball as he terrorizes a city, as part of the "Ode To The Nut Shot" sketch.
- This movie, like The Beast of Yucca Flats (1961), Frankenstein, and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde inspired Stan Lee and Jack Kirby to create the Incredible Hulk character.
- A homage to the film can also be found in the Warren Ellis comic-book Planetary.
- The line: "Why don't you ask me what it feels like to be a freak?" is sampled in American industrial rock Rob Zombie's song "Demon Speeding", on the 2001 album The Sinister Urge.
- "Monsters vs. Aliens the 2009 computer-animated 3-D feature film from DreamWorks Animation and Paramount Pictures alludes to this movie when giant Susan pulls a needle from her leg and throws it , pinning a man's foot to the ground (rather than killing him as in the original).
Home video releases
The film was released on VHS by Columbia Trinstar Home Video on June 21, 1994.  The Mst3k version of the movie was released on VHS by Rhino Home Video on April 30, 1996, but pulled out of circulation due to rights issues with the movie. Due to a problem with Susan Hart (the rights holder and founder of the Nicholson Estate), both versions have yet to see a DVD release.
- Wingrove, David. Science Fiction Film Source Book (Longman Group Limited, 1985)
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