Monster of the Day #912

So the day before the Tri-Star Godzilla was released, Fox pulled a Corman and telecast Gargantua. It was a sad little wet fart of a movie, and basically Gorgo meets Free Willy, about dad Adam Baldwin reconnecting with his young son on a tropical island, as in a parallel plot (wow!), first big brother and then mama Gargantua come to rescue the *ahem* cute baby dinosaur that Baldwin’s son has inevitably bonded with in secret. So, yes, there’s some E.T. in there too.

You can tell these are stills because you can actually see everything:


Big Brother. This was featured in one brief scene, and wounded and resting the rest of the film. Nobody is killed in this, I don’t think, it was meant as a ‘family’ film. Anyway, you certainly never get nearly as good look at this as we see here. The animatronics for the beasties were pretty cheap, and a lot of cheating had to be done.

The *cough* big scene was Mama coming to save her kids. As you can see, except for the Baby, the filmmakers followed the “keep the monsters but briefly seen and in the dark to cover up limitations” technique.

In the end, Gargantua was pretty much a total snooze-fest. Anyway, if you really feel the need, it’s posted on YouTube.

  • Flangepart

    Soldier on the left is using an AK-47…these American? I don’t know what I was expecting with this turkey…
    Third pic. down, the wee beastie looks like the 90’s baby Godzilla with a horn.
    This is another reason to want to see this thing riffed with extreme prejudice.

  • Ericb

    In the second picture the monster looks like he’s leaning on the bar unloading a tale of woe to the bartender after a hard day at the office …

    “(hic) and that jerk Gamera, well, let me tell you (hic) …”

  • Gamera977

    Well that sob swiped my tuna and Gyaos sandwich from the breakroom fridge so I gave me a piece of my mind….

  • Flangepart

    “An ‘bother thinggink…you water down drinks ‘gin…I’ll call Go-gorgo come stomp mud hold up yer…you know, that place…”

  • Wow. I didn’t realize Adam Baldwin was in this.

    Of course, I’ve been busy forgetting I’d ever seen it. Which, considering the movie, was all too easy to do.

  • Gamera977

    They could have just cast Alec Baldwin as the monster.

  • The Rev.

    I actually recorded this when it was originally broadcast. When I finally say down to watch it, I gave up very quickly and never got close to finishing it. Eventually I either taped over it or got rid of it (I think…maybe I should poke around). That says a lot, for me to give up on a giant monster movie. Oh, sure, sometime I suppose I should finish it for completeness, but I am in no hurry whatsoever.

  • bgbear_rnh

    Baldwin played a Marine Biologist, that is a Marine and a Biologist so they can be pretty bad-ass :D

  • Rock Baker

    I didn’t know this was a TV movie. I think we rented it when it was released on video, but I honestly don’t remember much of anything aside from it’s island setting. The one reaction I had was a devastating realisation that CGI was going to be the new norm for monster movies, one reason I’ve seen so few to be made since the turn of the century.

  • The Rev.

    Yeah, it was a Fox TV-movie. They had a fairly big ad campaign, as I recall. Obviously this was because of the Godzilla movie (it came out in 1998).

  • GalaxyJane

    Wow, missed this one completely. Probably something to do with the fact that I was stationed in Germany about this time and AFN was never in a million years going to bother with this one.

  • Wade Harrell

    “It was a sad little wet fart of a movie” – Best one line review ever!!

  • Eric Hinkle

    Pardon my ignorance, but what is AFN?

  • GalaxyJane

    Armed Forces Network. It’s the overseas TV service for military members. Back then at least, there was just one channel and all you generally got were whatever series were currently popular in the US from all the different networks, and those a season or two behind, so if you were into anything at all interesting you were SOL. Not a lot of TV movies, maybe a miniseries or two. And cheap first-run syndication, so Baywatch and Xena. Some live sports, but 6 hours time difference, so games started really late. I did somehow manage to watch Gus Frerotte concuss himself though.

    They also aren’t allowed to show commercials, so they fill the spots with terrible Army-produced PSAs on things like ‘how to use coupons at the Commissary’ and ‘why the 5% Commissary surcharge’ or ‘turn on the light when you get out of bed and go to the bathroom, so you don’t hurt yourself’ (really!). My favorite was the MST3K parody about avoiding being the target of terrorists.

    Overall, watching AFN was always slightly surreal, I spent most of my spare time playing D and D or drinking beer in the local gasthof instead.

  • Eric Hinkle

    Thanks for the explanation! I have to ask my brother if he remembers any of it from his time at a base in Korea.

  • Bill Hiers

    People die in it, definitely. One of the villain’s henchmen is eaten (another is mauled but survives), and two of the three reporters on the boat during the storm get killed, too.

    I’m weird. I actually liked this film. I even have the novelization of it.

  • Bill Hiers

    I think it was filmed in Australia.