Bert I. Gordon Dies


Bert Ira Gordon, also known as “Mr. B.I.G.”, was an American film director, producer, writer, and special effects artist. He was born on September 24, 1922, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and began making home movies in 16mm after his aunt gave him a camera for his 13th birthday. He dropped out of college to join the Army Air Forces in World War II. After the war, he married and he and his wife began making television commercials.

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“The City of Homes”

Anytime a city is named on “Svengoolie”, the hosted horror movie television program, they play a running gag audio clip with a crowd asking “BERWYN?” The show has been shot in Chicago since 1970, while hosts Jerry G. Bishop and Rich Koz are natives of the Chicago metro.

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The Ghost and Mr. Chicken (1966)

Attaboy, Luther!

I watched Universal Pictures 1966 comedy/horror film “The Ghost and Mr. Chicken” (for the umpteenth time) on Svengoolie. This movie stars Barney,  I mean Don Knotts, as Luther Heggs, the typesetter at the local newspaper. He spends a night in a haunted house, where there had been a murder-suicide, and on this 20th anniversary of the event, witnesses a series of horrifying events. When his story is published by the paper, Luther is a hero but the homeowner, Simmons, sues the newspaper and Luther for liable.

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The Deadly Mantis (1957)

A Thousand Tons of Horror! From A Million Years Ago …

I watched the 1957 Universal-International science-fiction monster film “The Deadly Mantis” on Svengoolie. It was written and produced by William Alland (The Black Castle, It Came from Outer Space, Creature from the Black Lagoon, This Island Earth, Revenge of the Creature, Tarantula, The Creature Walks Among Us, The Mole People, The Land Unknown, The Colossus of New York, The Space Children, The Rare Breed). The film was directed by Nathan Juran (The Black Castle, 20 Million Miles to Earth, The Brain from Planet Arous,

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Attack of the Puppet People (1958)

Terror Comes In Small Packages!

I watched the 1958, American International Pictures[1], science fiction horror film “Attack of the Puppet People” on Svengoolie. Secretary Sally Reynolds is grateful to her seemingly kind boss, Mr. Franz when he introduces her to a dapper young man, Bob. Little does she know that Franz is more than a doll maker. He is really a merciless mad scientist who fights off loneliness by shrinking people and forcing them to serve as his living dolls. But, when he shrinks Sally and her new beau, they refuse to be his playthings and escape into a dangerous world that towers over them.

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How to Make a Monster (1958)

It will scare the living yell out of you

I watched the 73-minute, 1958 American International Pictures movie “How to Make a Monster” on Svengoolie. A Monster Make-up artist, of 25 years, and his assistant lose their jobs when the new studio owner wants to get rid of monster flicks. They feel that kids today want more comedy, music, girls, singing, and dancing. Angry, he uses an experiment mind control chemical, in his make-up, to control the monsters in the current movie to kill at his will.

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The Monolith Monsters (1957)

Mammoth skyscrapers of stone thundering across the earth!

I watched the 1957  Universal-International, science-fiction/horror movie “The Monolith Monsters” on Svengoolie. It was produced by Howard Christie (Bud Abbott and Lou Costello Meet the Invisible Man, Abbott and Costello Go to Mars, Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops, Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy, and TV such as Wagon Train, The Virginian, Larado) , and directed by John Sherwood (The Creature Walks Among Us).

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House on Haunted Hill (1959)

Overnight in a haunted house

I watched the 1959 William Castle production “House on Haunted Hill”. Frederick Loren, a millionaire, invites 5 people to a party in a haunted house he has rented. All that stays the entire night will get ten thousand dollars each. He says that his wife Annabelle, who stays up in her room, wanted the party. William Castle both produced and directed while Robb White (an American writer of screenplays, television scripts, and adventure novels) wrote and co-produced this horror film.

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The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971)


I watched the 1971 British dark comedy horror film “The Abominable Dr. Phibes” on Svengoolie. The cult classic was produced by Ronald S. Dunas (The Hardy Boys: The Mystery of the Chinese Junk, Naked Fear) and Louis M. Heyward (The Dick Clark Show, Dr. Goldfoot and the Girl Bombs, House of 1,000 Dolls, The Crimson Cult, Cry of the Banshee, Murders in the Rue Morgue, Dr. Phibes Rises Again), directed by Robert Fuest (Dr. Phibes Rises Again, The Devil’s Rain), written by William Goldstein (Dr. Phibes Rises Again) and

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House of Wax (1953)

Unlike anything you’ve seen before!

I watched the 1953 House of Wax, originally called The Wax Works, which was Warner Bros.’ answer to the surprise 3-D hit Bwana Devil[1], on Svengoolie. They contracted Julian and Milton Gunzburg’s Natural Vision 3-D system[2], the same one used for Bwana Devil, and filmed a remake of their thriller Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933), based on Charles S. Belden’s three-act play The Wax Works. The director André de Toth (May 15, 1913 – October 27, 2002) was blind in one eye and couldn’t see the 3D results.

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