November 24, 2019

Here Comes EEGAH!

https://www.thefilmdetective.com/eegah
EEGAH (1962)
Starring Arch Hall Jr, Marilyn Manning, Richard Kiel, Arch Hall Sr. Directed by Arch Hall Sr (as Nicholas Merriwether). (89 min).
ON BLU-RAY FROM

Review by Fluffy the Fearless­čś╝

For dedicated MSTies, Eegah needs no introduction. Featured on the original Mystery Science Theater 3000 in 1993, it remains one of the show’s more popular classic episodes.

The movie itself is a woefully-inept exercise in bargain basement nepotism. Character actor turned backwoods auteur Arch Hall Sr spent most of the ‘60s trying to turn his cherub-faced offspring, Arch Hall Jr, into a teen idol. That never happened, of course, and only Eegah himself, Richard Kiel, went on to do anything noteworthy.

It probably goes without saying that MST3K is the only reason Eegah is still remembered. Watching the film today, without Joel, Tom Servo & Crow riffing-along, seems unfathomable. The Film Detective gives us that very opportunity, though...with a 4K restoration, no less. But while the film looks and sounds better than it probably ever did, who the hell cares?

"Not funny, guys!"
The real treasures here are the bonus features, including the full MST3K episode, which marks the first time anything from the original series has ever been released on Blu-ray. While I personally don’t think it’s their greatest riff job – The Clonus Horror deserves that honor - this is where “Watch out for Snakes” became part of MSTie vernacular. Also included are individual interviews with MST3K’s Joel Hodgson and Arch Hall Jr himself. The latter offers some interesting production details and generally comes across as good-natured about Eegah’s dubious legacy.

This Blu-ray release Eegah is definitely one for the niche crowd. I can’t imagine anyone beyond the Hall family caring about the restoration, but MST3K fans will certainly want to snap this up. And quickly, too, since it’s limited to only 1,500 copies.

EXTRA KIBBLES
MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 VERSION (92 min)
INTERVIEW WITH ARCH HALL JR.
INTERVIEW WITH JOEL HODGSON
SUPPLEMENTAL BOOKLET – With an essay by The Film Detective’s Don Stradley.

KITTY CONSENSUS:
PURR-R-R...LIKE A GOOD SCRATCH BEHIND THE EARS

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