We all know about Godzilla, King Kong, and The Creature from the Black Lagoon, but have you heard about these monster movies? Here are 10 of the weirdest monster movies ever made...And yes, all of these are real films.
1. A*P*E (1976)
A*P*E (Attacking Primate monstEr; I’m not kidding) is a South Korean King Kong rip-off
that has everything, and I mean EVERYTHING: Giant ape, CHECK. Giant snake,
CHECK. Giant shark, CHECK. Giant middle finger, CHECK.
2. Matango: Attack of the Mushroom People (1963)
Directed by the father of Godzilla, Ishiro Honda, Matango is a shockingly sober horror film for having such a goofy plot. After a storm wrecks a yacht, the survivors take refuge on an island only to find that the fungus there is a little more than psychedelic. The beautiful island setting makes the horror even more palpable and it features a truly chilling ending scene.
3. Death Kappa (2010)
The newest film on this list. Kappas are mischievous beings from Japanese folklore and this film asks the extremely important question:
What if one was really REALLY big? Oh, and it’s a musical. That’s right
4. Space Amoeba (1970)
Another Ishiro Honda film here, this film tells the tale of mysterious space spores that fall to Earth and mutate a cuttlefish, crab, and turtle to monstrous proportions. Destruction ensues!
5. The Mighty Peking Man (1977)
When the Shaw Brothers go for a monster film, they go HARD. Simultaneously a rip-off of both King Kong and Tarzan with a dash of classic kung-fu film thrown in for good measure, this film is absolutely bonkers. Featuring the iconic Danny Lee, one of the most hilariously off-putting animatronic ape faces ever made, and an infamous scene with a leopard (you’ll know it when it happens), this film has to be seen to be believed.
6. Frankenstein Conquers the World (1965)
Hello again, Honda, my old friend. In what is quite possibly the oddest entry in the classic Frankenstein film franchise, this film proposes that the heart of Frankenstein’s monster was found by Nazis and used for experiments during WWII. But once the war ended, the heart went missing. No need to worry, it simply grew into a child and is now in Japan. Oh, but he’s not done growing… and there is a second monster lurking.
7. Pulgasari (1985)
The story behind this film is actually even more interesting than the film itself, as the director/producer and star were kidnapped from South Korea by Kim Jong-il and forced to make a Godzilla rip-off (among other films). That being said, this is one of the oddest Godzilla rip-offs ever, featuring a little clay monster that comes to horrific life. And depending on your point of view, the ending either condemns capitalism… or Kim himself. I’m still not quite sure on that one.
8. Dogora (1964)
Okay, this is the last Ishiro Honda film on the list, I promise. A detective investigates a gang of international diamond smugglers. Little does he know that the thief isn’t a human, but a giant space jellyfish that eats diamonds and is allergic to bee venom. You heard me.
9. The X from Outer Space (1967)
One of the only monster films made by Shochiku Studios, this one is a doosey, earning a well-deserved reputation as one of the silliest monster films ever made. When scientists return from a mission to Mars, they discover they have an alien spore attached to their ship. Said spore quickly mutates into a giant chicken monster with what looks like a fighter jet for a head. But if you thought this film was lacking in subtext, whoa buddy, do I have news for you: the monster represents the main character's lust run rampant. I think.
10. Godzilla vs. Hedorah (AKA) Godzilla vs. The Smog Monster (1971)
You didn’t think I could do a whole list of weird monster movies and not have Godzilla on here somewhere, did you? This is the one with the infamous flying scene. When Hedorah flies away to escape battle, Godzilla gives chase by using his atomic breath to propel himself through the sky after the muck monster. This film ping-pongs wildly in tone, going from a scene with bright colorful animation set to children singing immediately to a nightmarish scene of civilians melting from Hedorah’s toxic smog, leaving nothing but sludge-covered skeletons. Only to then go straight into an LSD-fueled 60’s club scene. This film is wild!