The Auteur Theory deals with filmmaking in which the director is viewed as the major creative force in a motion picture, a field that would include such luminaries as Martin Scorsese, Wes Anderson, and Dario Argento, but when discussing the Auteur Theory very few critics look to the B-movies and the many talented filmmakers who tried their best to create something special on a shoestring budget, and with that in mind I would like to take a look at American filmmaker, Bert I. Gordon.
What makes Bert I. Gordon an auteur, you ask? If the key criteria to being considered an auteur is that you are “The major creative force in a motion picture” well that pretty much sums up Gordon and his entire career in the film industry because not only did he produce two dozen movies over four decades he also directed them, wrote most of them, and he even provided the special effects for half of them and if that’s not a creative force I don’t know what is. Below you will find my reviews of eleven of Bert I. Gordon’s films, the ones dealing with giant monsters of one kind or another, so just click on the poster or link below to dive into the colossal world of one of the more noteworthy B-movie producers.
A group of scientists are sent to explore a planet that suddenly appeared in our Solar System and while there they must tangle with a few dinosaurs.
An expedition to Mexico to find a missing man results in encounters with various giant creatures including a mutated 25-foot man with one big eye.
A military officer survives a nuclear blast, only to begin to uncontrollably grow into an increasingly unstable giant. And can love withstand such a disparity in size?
In a very loose adaptation of the H.G. Wells story “Food of the Gods and How it Came to Earth,” we radioactively enlarged grasshoppers go on a rampage and it’s up to Peter Graves to stop them before they destroy Chicago.
A rural community finds itself besieged by a giant spider and it’s up to some teenagers and their high school science teacher to join forces to save the day.
Glenn Manning, “The Amazing Colossal Man,” believed dead after falling from the Hoover is now rampaging across Southern California, but can even the might of the United States Army stop him?
A deranged dollmaker designs a machine that shrinks people so that he never has to be alone, in a film that could be called “Honey I Shrunk the Neighbours!”
A brave hero must rescue a princess from the vile clutches of an evil sorcerer before she is fed to the fiend’s two-headed dragon. Beware fans of Ray Harryhausen’s The 7th Voyage of Sinbad as this borrows liberally from that classic.
A group of delinquent teenagers ingest a substance and grow thirty feet tall, then proceed to take over a small town, in another strange adaptation of the H.G. Wells story “Food of the Gods and How it Came to Earth.”
In this third adaptation of “Food of the Gods and How it Came to Eart.” a group of people become trapped on a remote Canadian island by giant killer animals that seem to have developed a hunger for human flesh.
This very very loose adaptation of the H.G. Wells short story “Empire of the Ants” deals with a real estate scam that leads to a disastrous encounter with some radioactively grown giant ants, who proceed to hunt and herd our heroes.
It’s fair to say that Bert I. Gordon was never what one could call a “Great Filmmaker” but he did produce films that have at least entertained a lot of people over the years, especially bad movie lovers, and even though he seemed to have a strange obsession with H.G. Well and has the dubious honour of having the most films to appear on Mystery Science Theater 3000, he still managed to produce films with a definite “hands-on” feel to them and while his filmography may range from goofy to the laughably bad you’ve got to give him credit for mostly delivering on what he promised.
The Giant Worlds of Bert I. Gordon
Movie Series Rank - 5/10
Bert I. Gordon’s films may feature some of the worst optical effects, goofy creatures, bad acting and weird storylines but that certainly doesn’t stop them from being very entertaining.