Monday, November 21, 2011

B-Movie Monday: Equinox (1970)

Recently I was reminded of the movie Equinox, also known as The Beast,by my friend Jim, who saw in on TCM. This 1970 film is considered one of the inspirations for the Evil Dead series.

The basic plot of the movie is that four friends are looking for a lost professor. They stumble upon an ancient book and are pursued by monsters in a strange pocket universe. There are several people of note in this movie: Frank Bonner (Herb from WKRP in Cincinnati)  plays one of the teen. Legendary author Fritz Leiber plays the missing scientist. Plus Equinox was produced and directed by Dennis Muren, famed special effects designer who worked on Star Wars and Terminator 2. One of my personal favorites who was also involved was Dave Allen, famous stop motion artist who worked on many a b-movie production.

Equinox is a raw, low budgeted ($6500) early 70s movie with plenty of stop motion animation. There are ideas to steal from the movie for role playing or miniatures gaming. I recommend checking out the Criterion Edition of the movie. It's chock full of extras including the original version of the movie, two audio commentaries, and some fun little extras.

Bonus: The legendary King Kong Volkswagen commercial, animated by Dave Allen. I love how fluid the animation is.

Links To Check Out:

Equinox (film) on Wikipedia
"Backyard Monsters: Equinox and the Triumph of Love":  (SPOILERS!)  A great essay about the movie that delves into the inspirations and history of the film.

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