Steve McQueen in a jam
Release Date: 20 April 1958 | 12 | Blu- ray/ DVD Director: Irvin S Yeaworth Cast: Steve McQueen, Aneta Corsaut, Earl Rowe, Olin Howland, Stephen Chase
Considering this film’s title, there really isn’t that much Blob in it. People talk about the Blob at great length, but budget limitations mean that the titular mass doesn’t occupy much screen time. Which is a shame, because it’s the best thing here.
The plot is fairly routine ’ 50s monster movie antics, and it’s slow to properly get going ( following the world’s most inappropriate theme song for a horror film). Some glutinous alien material lands in a Pennsylvania town and attaches itself to a farmer. He dies, and this alerts the world’s oldest teenager ( Steve McQueen in his film debut, aged 28 but playing 17) to the threat. In scene after scene he attempts to convince the sceptical authorities that trouble’s afoot.
And that’s the main problem with this film: too much of it is teens trying to tell adults that the town’s being attacked. Who cares? We know they’re telling the truth. What a waste of time! There’s not a lot going on to test the grey matter.
What The Blob does have on its side is its ’ 50s small- town Americana – diners, “movie theaters”, chunky automobiles – and the giant globule of raspberry jam itself, all brightly coloured, especially on this HD edition. The scene where it invades a cinema is memorable, although it brings a truth home: there’s not really that much Blob.
Extras: The original trailer for the film (“Starring Steve McQueen and a cast of exciting young people!”) plus five short photo galleries. Russell Lewin A film poster outside the cinema bears the title The Vampire And The Robot, but is actually the one for Forbidden Planet.
“Table for two. Not by the window, please.”