The Beast of Yucca Flats

The Beast of Yucca Flats

Infobox Film
name = The Beast of Yucca Flats

caption = A promotional film poster for "The Beast of Yucca Flats"
director = Coleman Francis
producer = Anthony Cardoza
Coleman Francis
Roland Morin
Jim Oliphant
Larry Aten
Bing Stafford
writer = Coleman Francis
starring = Tor Johnson
Douglas Mellor
Barbara Francis
Bing Stafford
Conrad Brooks
music = Gene Kauer
Irwin Nafshun
Al Remington
cinematography = John Cagle
Lee Strosnider
editing = Coleman Francis
Austin McKinney
Lee Strosnider
Anthony Cardoza
distributor = Cinema Associates
released = 2 May 1961
runtime = 54 mins.
country = USA
awards =
language = English
budget = $34,000 (est.) [cite web|url=|title=The Fallout From Yucca Flats|last=Weaver|first=Tom||accessdate=2008-04-27]
preceded_by =
followed_by =
amg_id = 1:4466
imdb_id = 0054673

"The Beast of Yucca Flats" is a B horror film released in 1961. The film starred Swedish former wrestler Tor Johnson and was both written and directed by Coleman Francis. This film was featured on the television series "Mystery Science Theater 3000". Some critics have characterized this film as one of the worst sci-fi films of all time, even suggesting that it may be more poorly conceived and executed than Ed Wood's "Plan 9 from Outer Space" [cite web|url=|title="The Beast of Yucca Flats"|last=Begg|first=Ken ]


The film opens with an unnamed woman being strangled after finishing a shower. The purpose of the scene is unclear, although the actor portraying the murderer was doubling for Johnson's character. [] This scene is followed by Joseph Javorsky (Tor Johnson), a noted Soviet scientist, arriving in Yucca Flat in the United States after defecting. Javorsky is carrying a briefcase with various military secrets; the film's narrator (Coleman Francis) alludes to information about a Soviet moon landing specifically.

As Javorsky disembarks from his plane, he and his American contacts are attacked by a pair of KGB assassins (Anthony Cardoza and John Morrison). While the Americans stay to fight off the KGB agents, Javorsky flees into the desert, walking for (presumably) a great distance, and removing much of his clothing. Too late, it is revealed that he has wandered in range of an American nuclear test. The radiation transforms Javorsky into a mindless beast (the Beast). He proceeds to kill a couple in their car on a nearby road, prompting pursuit from two police officers named Jim Archer (Bing Stafford) and Joe Dobson (Larry Aten).

Meanwhile, a vacationing family ventures along the same road. After stopping at a service station to feed soda to pigs in a pen, the family's two young sons (Ronald and Alan Francis) wander off into the wastelands where they eventually encounter and escape from the Beast. Their father (Douglas Mellor) searches for them, but is mistaken for the killer by one of the police officers, searching for the murderer from the air in a small plane. The officer opens fire on the innocent man, who escapes after being repeatedly shot.

Eventually the family is reunited and the police shoot and kill the Beast. A wild rabbit appears and nuzzles the Beast's lifeless body.

Goofs and mistakes

* The film opens with the murder by strangling of a woman who has just gotten out of the shower and is thus topless - it is implied that the killer sexually abuses her corpse. The identity of the murderer is never revealed and the murder is never discussed after that scene. The murderer is dressed like Javorsky after the blast, but this murder is never mentioned during the actual film, nor is there any apparent place in the narrative where it could be said to occur. According to an interview with Anthony Cardoza, the scene was added after the film was complete because Coleman Francis liked nude scenes.
* The movie was filmed entirely silent. Narration, voiceovers, and some sound effects were added in post production. To avoid having to synchronize the audio to the picture, characters only speak when their faces are either off-screen or not clearly visible due to darkness or distance. Likewise, during scenes in which firearms are used, the muzzles of the guns are usually out-of-shot when the weapons are fired, presumably for similar sound-syncing reasons. [cite web|url=|title=Anthony Cardoza's Tor of the Desert|last=Weaver|first=Tom|]
* During scenes of gunplay, many characters appear at first to have suffered life-threatening bullet wounds, then appear to have inexplicably recovered and show no visible signs of having been wounded.


External links

*google video|4913900592490278110|"The Beast of Yucca Flats"

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