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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Herbert L. Strock
USA 1958

 

Go behind the scenes of moviedom's most popular teen monster movies and you'll discover a tale of monstrous vengeance! Following the success of two 1957 classics, I Was A Teenage Werewolf and I Was A Teenage Frankenstein, How To Make A Monster takes you backstage, where a frustrated artist spawns his own twisted scheme for murder. When the movie studio moguls decide they'd rather make musicals instead of horror films, their veteran horror makeup artist loses his job. He decides to get revenge against the executives by turning the studio's teenage horror stars into zombified killers. On the way to its eye-popping ending, How To Make A Monster delivers "a fun twist ... [and] getting there was not only delightful, but gratifying" (The Telltale Mind)!

***

When master monster make-up man Pete Dumond is fired by the new bosses of American International studios, he uses his creations to exact revenge.

Posters etc.

Theatrical Release: July 1st, 1958

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Review: Shout! Factory - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Shout! Factory - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:13:27.444        
Video

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,750,311,343 bytes

Feature: 22,154,674,176 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1673 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1673 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -31dB

Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Shout! Factory

 

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,750,311,343 bytes

Feature: 22,154,674,176 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

NEW Audio Commentary With Author/Screenwriter C. Courtney Joyner And Film Historian David Del Valle
NEW Audio Commentary With Author/Film Historian Tom Weaver With Dramatic Readings
NEW How To Make A Monster Movie Maker: Herman Cohen At AIP (15:00)
The Ghastly Ghouls: Q & A With Actors Gary Clarke And Gary Conway From Monster Bash (40:28)
Theatrical Trailer (1:59)


Blu-ray Release Date:
November 10th, 2020
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 9

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Shout! Factory Blu-ray (June 2021): Shout! Factory have transferred Herbert L. Strock's How to Make a Monster to Blu-ray. It is cited as being from a "NEW 2K Film Scan Of A Fine Grain Print". Generally it looks quite good, a touch of gloss but nicely layered contrast and very minor grain but there are frequent scratches/marks - notably in the color conclusions (see samples below) but also present in the black and white majority of the film. The monster make-up looks delightfully scary. It is on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate. Fans should appreciate the superiority over SD despite the source weaknesses.

NOTE: We have added 55 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Shout! Factory use a DTS-HD Master dual-mono track (24-bit) in the original English language. There are effects but less prominent than the dramatic score by Paul Dunlap (The Angry Red Planet, Shack Out on 101, Portland Expose, Big House U.S.A., Target Earth, Park Row, Cry Vengeance) that frequently heightens suspense. Shout! Factory offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Shout! Factory Blu-ray offers stacked supplements starting with two new commentaries. First up are C. Courtney Joyner (author of My Favorite Horror Movie: 48 Essays By Horror Creators On The Film That Shaped Them) and Film Historian David Del Valle (Lost Horizons Beneath the Hollywood Sign.) They share their enthusiasm as How To Make A Monster is a Valentines to AIP and what happened to this monster films cycle, a lot of Producer Herman Cohen, most of the cast, a discussion of make-up artist pioneer Jack Pierce connections to the Perry Mason TV show and they mention other movies "about the business" of making a film, James H. Nicholson and entertainment lawyer Samuel Z. Arkoff and significantly more. These guys grew up with these monster movies and have made it their passion. Next up is another fun commentary by Tom Weaver (author of It Came from Horrorwood: Interviews with Moviemakers in the Science Fiction and Horror Tradition.) He mentions that How to Make a Monster was made in his birth week and offers some dramatic readings about the production and the film's reviews. He is likewise excellent. But there is more - we get Daniel Griffith's 1/4 hour documentary short; How to Make a Monster Moviemaker -- Herman Cohen at American International Pictures with input and archival interviews with Didier Chatelain, Herman Cohen, C. Courtney Joyner and Ted Newsom. It was made in 2020 and covers a lot. Lastly is a 40 minute Q & A with actors Gary Clarke and Gary Conway from Monster Bash entitled The Ghastly Ghouls. There is also a theatrical trailer.

How to Make a Monster fits appropriately in our 1950s + 60s science-fiction / fantasy / creature-feature Blu-ray entries. In many ways, it is quintessential AIP (American International Pictures) - simplistic, dramatic horror-angle, short (possibility being made as part of a double feature), eye-catching posters and appealing to a young audience less keen on the growing popularity of television. It handles the filmmaking expression well and the relatively goofy indoctrination of murderers makes it fun and a bit scary. I loved it - especially with the Shout! Factory Blu-ray extras including the two wonderful commentaries, documentary short and Q+A. Fans know who they are and, if they don't have this chestnut are encouraged to pick this up. Plenty of value here!

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 


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Damage in the color finale

 

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More full resolution (1920 X 1080) Blu-ray Captures for DVDBeaver Patreon Supporters HERE

 

 

 
Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Shout! Factory - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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