I had never heard of this movie until I met the object of aforesaid Monster at a fan convention here in the bay area a few years ago... she told me about it, perhaps somehow sensing my affinity for rubber-suited monsters. I told her I hadn't seen it, but I'd sure love to, and she said the guy who worked on "Creature from the Black Lagoon" had also done the monster suit for this movie. Now I had to see it, but I didn't really get a chance until last Thursday at the Parkway in Oakland.
Strangely enough, the producer of the film's daughter had shown up for the showing (I'd give you her name if I remembered it), which also coupled as a birthday celebration for bay area horror host "Dr. Ghoulfinger". Even stranger, she had shown up not to seize the print or anything vulgar of that nature, but rather to lend her support and enjoy the rare public viewing of her father's film. When asked about her father's career after "Monster from Piedras Blancas", she said he moved into other types of film, to which a vocal part of the audience shouted "PORN!!!"
OK, the film itself is a somewhat better than average exploitation horror flick. The monster suit, which allows for a great deal of animation and motion, is a wonder -- it easily blows away everything else in the movie, including the much cheaper gore type effects such as decapitated heads. Of course, depending on your own inclinations, Jeanne Carmen also steals the show with her luscious bod, appearing as a brunette (anyone know what Jeanne Carmen's natural hair color is, anyway?) showing more character than most victims of 50s rubber monsters. Her acting is not great, but adequate for the film's demands.
No one else in the cast really stands out, but the effort in general is solid, not slowing down too much like many of its kind do in the middle. The film's makers seem to have known they must show something worth seeing every reel or risk losing the audience. A lot of the stuff in the movie seems pretty goofy, and I doubt that anyone involved took the film too seriously; it almost comes off as a comedy, kind of like but not as much so as some of Corman's movies from the time (most notably "Not of This Earth").
Review by funkyfry from the Internet Movie Database.