The Green Slime (1968)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: When Frederick Burdsall isn’t at work or watching movies while covered in cats, you can find Fred in the front seat of Knoebels’ Phoenix. 

Way back when in a faraway place I like to refer to as “The Sixties” (It existed kids, trust me) my local movie theater would frequently show a Saturday Matinee geared to kids and it was here I was introduced to the wonders of Roger Corman, Vincent Price and numerous monsters that still thrill me today but there was one in particular that really got my 9-year-old juices going.

A few weeks before, the theater was showing a little film called The Mad Monster Party and as always, I was parked in a seat halfway up the aisle with my popcorn enjoying the spectacle. When the dust settled and it was time to go I was handed a clip-on button as I exited that simply said “The Green Slime are Coming”. Slimy and Green, huh? Yes, please.

Well, my friends, an entire freakin’ month went by before I saw it on the marquee…The Green Slime are here Saturday at noon. Setting a new record getting home I rushed into the house and did the most horrible thing I have ever done in my life…I VOLUNTEERED to do chores because the Green Slime are here Saturday and I have to be there. The things we do for our passions. Let’s take a look at this brilliant piece of monster movie fun.

An asteroid is on a collision course and it falls on Jack Rankin (Robert Horton from Wagon Train) to rush off to Gamma 3 to blast it out of the sky. The base is run by Vince Elliott (Richard Jaeckel, one of my mom’s favorite actors) who at one time was a close friend but they clashed over Lisa Benson (Luciana Paluzzi, who played Fiona Volpe in the Bond film Thunderball) who conveniently is one of the doctors on the base. There is quite a bit of macho posturing before he is welcomed aboard.

Upon reaching the asteroid they encounter a greenish ooze which puts a damper on their project and forces them to hoof it back to the ship unaware that Dr. Halverson has some on the leg of his spacesuit. As the suits are decontaminated, it causes the slime to mutate and grow into a one-eyed, tentacled monstrosity that kills with electricity. ( I REALLY need a Green Slime Pop Vinyl figure…someone get on that.) 

Nothing they do seems to harm it and if it bleeds, the blood becomes another monster….how do you kill it? After an attack on the infirmary, they decide to lure them to Block C and try to, at least, contain them but Dr. Halverson has all his research in there and the creatures are soon loose again. Deciding to evacuate, the doors won’t open because there are creatures all over the outside of the ship now and Elliott leads a team out to do battle in a last ditch effort to save their lives. How does it all turn out…Watch and enjoy The Green Slime and find out.

Directed by Kinji Fukasaku of Battle Royale, Tora! Tora! Tora! and the fantastic yakuza film Graveyard of Honor fame.

I can’t deny that there are times that I watch a favorite from my childhood and can’t believe how incredibly bad it really was…this is NOT one of them. I still get tears in my eyes when that psychedelic theme song by Richard Delvy starts up and I turn into a 9-year-old all over again and revel in the campiness of it all. I have a love for this movie that rivals the kind of love you have for family and friends and I hope I always will…..By the way…I STILL have the button.

As always, I’ll see you in the front seat of the Phoenix.

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