June 11th, 2014

Penguin Beer

Don't Let the Allosaurus Eat Raquel Welch

Dinosaurs and women in leather bikinis lived in desperate struggle for existence in our dream of buried pre-history. 1966's One Million Years B.C. presents a unique world of stop motion dinosaurs and grunting, half naked men and women, hardly different from the gigantic animals they share a dangerous environment with. It's a lot of fun.

The story follows Tumak (John Richardson) who's exiled from his tribe of hairy, cave dwelling brunettes and wanders the dangerous wastes before reaching the sea and falling in with a tribe of blondes who like seafood. The seafood that's small enough for them to kill, anyway.

Tumak begins a romance with one of them, Loana (Raquel Welch), seen here rescuing him from the giant sea turtle.

There's essentially no dialogue in the movie, the characters communicating almost entirely by grunts and saying one another's names. But since this is fantasy pre-history, Welch wears skins fitted for the maximum appeal of which modern technology is capable and her hair has obviously seen a stylist.

Somewhat more puzzling are the trimmed bangs most of the men have in the movie which are neither flattering or realistic.

The silent drama of the cave people is interesting enough but the relationships between the dinosaurs are even better--and only slightly less civilised. Animated by Ray Harryhausen, the stop motion creatures have wonderfully distinct personalities, the best scene being a fight between an Allosaurus and a Triceratops.

The Allosaurus has a strategy, using its greater agility to get around the Triceratops who's trying to get a straight path to ram the other beast. Meanwhile, Tumak and Loana cower in a crevasse

In addition to the dinosaurs and Raquel Welch, the film has the terrific visuals of the Canary Islands where the exteriors were shot, a fascinatingly brutal environment of jagged rock and reddish sand.