A meteorite falls from the sky one night and is found by an old hermit. The rock breaks open and a clear, gelatinous organism slithers out onto the hermit's hand - and begins to eat him alive...
This low budget sci-fi horror was written by Kate Philips and Theodore Simonson. Its main selling point is in its monster, the ever-growing, blood red blob of the title, which devours everyone in its path. The only people who are awake to this danger are a bunch of small town teenagers, led by Steve McQueen.
Well, I say teenagers, Steve doesn't look a day under thirty and his friends are a little mature for their age. But the authority figures, as is so often the case, just won't believe the kids about the all-consuming threat, so you get plenty of scenes with Steve and co trying to persuade the police and the parents that their town is about to be wiped off the map.
While its strength is in its simplicity, The Blob does feature an awful lot of padding, as if the filmmakers couldn't think up enough plot to fill up even this movie's short running time. Witness the superfluous car race bit (with the cars driving backwards for extra novelty - Rebel Without a Cause it isn't), or the chess playing cops, when what you really want to see is the cast members being ingested by our extraterrestrial enemy.
The special effects might not be all that special, but they are fun, especially when a lump of red jelly will loom menacingly into view, or slither under a closed door after its prey. There's something agreeably nasty about the idea, it's like something out of those 1950's EC comics. Watch for: the great cinema sequence, where the audience (watching weirdo chiller Daughter of Horror) are attacked at a midnight show. Listen for: the theme tune, written by Burt Bacharach and Mack David (Hal's brother). The End?
German-born director and producer in America. A religious film maker, he was best known for directing science fiction movies The Blob, along with 4D Man and Dinosaurus!, all made for producer Jack H. Harris.