Wednesday, February 10, 2016

The Beast from Twenty Zillion Years Ago



dinosaur
The two-headed dinosaur
Stop-motion animator Ryan Lengyel describes his short movie with the following:  

The stop-motion story of a two-headed dinosaur, and his struggles in the modern world. My tribute to Ray Harryhausen, Kaiju films, Jack Harris, Dinosaurs Attack trading cards, etc...

I found out about Ryan's work by listening to an episode of The B-Movie Cast  and this is certainly a great homage to the B-movie genre. The movie even ends with the familiar trope of showing a question mark after The End.

Sure enough, The Beast from Twenty Zillion Years Ago was followed up by a sequel called Night of the Beast (from twenty zillion years ago)
 

Recorded in slop-motion and glorious standard-def, the sequel features the two-headed dinosaur battling an overgrown sea monkey. This is an amusing reference to numerous episodes of The B-Movie Cast in which co-host and author Nic Brown recounted receiving sea monkeys as a gift. The character you see coming out of that dollar store is in fact a caricature of the B-Movie Man himself, having just purchased the aforementioned sea monkeys. In true B-movie horror fashion, he lets out a classic Wilhelm scream when he is attacked by the beast. What a nice touch.

The sequel is much more ambitious than the first movie with the animator inserting lots of small details that are easy to miss upon first viewing. At just over 7 minutes long, you can afford to watch it several times to catch all the pop culture references.

As with the first movie, the ending leads you to believe that there may be another sequel planned to make it a proper trilogy. Let's hope so.

The creature creations and animation are great. The music is very creative as well.

I imagine Ray Harryhausen looking down from above with a smile of approval.

Read another post about an animated dinosaur.

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