To celebrate Valentines Day we’ve decided to honor an old tradition by bringing back the Beach Party movie! You can thank us later but I have a feeling you probably would rather stab us in our eyeballs and say “How dare you?!”
Today’s movie is a throwback from 1965 titled The Beach Girls and the Monster. It stars Arnold Lessing as Richard Lindsay, a brilliant scientist who determines that science is wack and the surf is where it’s at! He gives up this promising career and follows that of the surfer in Santa Monica and decided to live with this father and stepmother.
Richard’s father is also a well-known oceanographer, Dr. Otto Lindsay (Jon Hall), who is hitched to his much younger and beautiful wife Vicky (Sue Casey). Hell, the house still has room so let’s also invite Richard (Walker Edmiston) to live there as well, a sculptor.
Vicky, being the undersexed milf, continuously flirts with her stepson, a potential script for an x-rated film for sure. But all that aside, eventually a ghastly creature emerges from the deep fathoms of the ocean and begins a senseless ramping slaughter of all the post-teenage actors on the beach.
All the footage of the surfing was shot by surfing filmmaking legend, Dale Davis. You may know him from Walk on the Wet Side, Strickly Hot, and his masterpiece The Golden Breed. But if you’re like us and have no interest in surfing you will have no clue what we were just talking about.
If you watch the trailer, included near the top as always, the girls dancing in the movie were introduced as “The Watusi Dancing Girls” from the Whisky a Go Go club located on Sunset Boulevard. So there is that at least. 🙂
Like most Beach Party films, the actors are usually in locations on loan and usually are friends of the producers and director. This is no different. Most the film was shot in the Brentwood residence of Henry and Shirly Rose in Los Angeles, who was the film’s art director.
The sculptor, Mark, is actually a sculptor and puppeteer in real life. (Wow…) He created the monster and hosted a reality show titled “The Walker Edminston Show” which was an old children’s television program that featured his puppets.
One of the great takeaways from The Beach Girls and the Monster is that the soundtrack was performed by real-life surf band The Hustlers (“Kopout”, “Inertia”, and “Wailin’ Out” to name a few). According to Pop Surf Culture, the soundtrack for the film “has got to rank up there among the best…no fewer than 13 different sections of full-bore, deep revert tank surf instrumentals throb the soundtrack.”
Frank Sinatra, Jr. and Joan Janis wrote the theme song “Dance Baby Dance” and was produced by Edward Janis. Arnold Lassing, the guy who plays Richard, wrote all the songs he sings in the film including “More Than Wanting You.” Walker Edmiston and Elain DuPont (Mark and Jane) wrote “There’s a Monster in the Surf.”
Deadly Cinema would feature The Beach Girls and the Monster in one of their episodes. Felix the Cat would be trapped in a VCR and forced to watch the movie in an episode of The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat. Furthermore, The Official Razzie Movie Guide lists the film as one of “The 100 Most Enjoyably Bad Movies Ever Made.”