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Weekend Discussion Thread: Dangerous Stunts

Alert reader Charles suggests:

What about dangerous stunts? There is a scene in the “Beast of Hollow mountain” where a stuntmen and horse fall down a mountain. I had to look up whether that stunt man was killed. It sure looked like he was seriously hurt.

One of the things I like about season 11 is that they pay attention to this — like the fire pellets being shot at the stars of “The Land that Time Forgot.”

What are your most egregious stunts in MSTed movies?

39 Replies to “Weekend Discussion Thread: Dangerous Stunts”

  1. jay
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    says:

    Boggy Creek II –

    When Tanya takes a dip of Crenshaw’s snuff. Oh, The Pain, The Pain!

       14 likes

  2. skrag2112
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    There was that one Hercules movie where during a big battle scene, Herc pulls down a large siege tower. It really looked like the stuntmen in the tower were earning their paychecks that day.

       8 likes

  3. goalieboy82
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    the Baby Oil in Mitchell.

       15 likes

  4. Sitting Duck
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    In the Ballyhoo documentary about The Screaming Skull, Peggy Webber reminisced on how her fall down the stairs was originally intended to be much more spectacular than what we got. But since she was three months pregnant at the time and they obviously didn’t have it in the budget to use a stunt person, it got dialed back.

       10 likes

  5. Torque the Dorque
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    Creeping Terror

    Any and every stunt person who had to endure being under the awful shag carpeting under a blazing sun, it must of been hellish. The poor actors that were dragged into its maw probably did not make it any better for any of them.

       17 likes

  6. DarkGrandmaofDeath
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    The actors climbing the steep hills in Night of the Blood Beast gets my vote. I know there are many far more dangerous action scenes, but there’s something about poor Ed Nelson and the others having to scramble up, then down, sliding through the scree, standing on top of rocks and picking their way down again that makes me edgy. I tend to feel that way with any climbing scene, though, as I’ve been known to trip over hoses and small animals. However, NotBB in particular is extremely nerve-wracking to me. I just picture one of the girls stumbling, scooping up the other actors in her fall, and all of them rolling and bouncing all the way down, at which point Bernard Kowalski would tell them to get up and do it again without the fall since Corman had a deadline.

       5 likes

  7. Kevin Wallace
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    All of the actors 3 foot jump across the nearly bottomless chasm during the rock climbing sequence in The Lost Continent.
    You could tell that that actors in the film performed that stunt themselves without the aid of stunt doubles.

       10 likes

  8. eegah
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    In Giant Spider Invasion, when Steve Brodie and Barbara Hale roll over each other.

       19 likes

  9. Yeti of Great Danger
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    Along the lines of the aforementioned Beast of Hollow Mountain stunt that truly looked dangerous, I offer the tree falling into the dining room in Squirm. According to IMDb, there wasn’t anything tame or tricked out about that stunt — they literally dropped a large tree from a crane onto the set, resulting in a one-take shot of actual panic from the actors.

       14 likes

  10. MonkeyPretzel
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    Tom Hennesy almost died playing the Creature in Revenge of the Creature. There was a strong current in the water, and the Creature suit became waterlogged quickly and he couldn’t fight his way out of the current. According to IMDB, two local boys who were watching the filming from a nearby boat realized he was in trouble and got him out in time. Some of the most dangerous work in films is the underwater work, because things can go wrong so quickly.

    If you look at RiffTrax, there’s a scene in Wonder Women during the long chase through the streets of Manilla where someone is hit by the taxi and the guys comment “Wow, that looked real!” It was. That wasn’t a stuntman, it was someone on set who just accidentally wandered into the scene. Fortunately the man survived.

       11 likes

  11. Ray Dunakin
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    In “Manos”, when the Master drops the flaming hand next to the pillar where his rebellious wife is tied up. That scene makes me cringe a little every time I see. The wind is blowing the flames all over the place, and her filmy gown is hanging down so close to the fire. It seemed very dangerous to me, and I doubt they had anyone standing by off-camera with a fire extinguisher or anything.

       10 likes

  12. duke of puddles
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    says:

    i did read that during ‘Gunslinger’ that poor Beverly was pretty banged up during filming not to mention a run in with fire ants.
    not a stunt or stunt person per se, but y’know, it happened.

    on another note, there were no dangerous stunts in ‘Monster a Go-Go because there was no…well you know….

       10 likes

  13. Torgover
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    I remember a anecdote that Bruce J. Mitchell, aka Rowsdower, said during his interview on the Final Sacrifice DVD, where he and another actor were practicing a stunt where the 2nd guy would put his knife at Rowsdower’s throat and Rowsdower would flip him over him. Bruce grabbed wrong and ended up slicing his hand really good on the knife and had to be taken 45 minutes to a hospital.

       10 likes

  14. Mibbitmaker
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    goalieboy82:
    the Baby Oil in Mitchell.

    “That stunt applying that slimy stuff all over me was a truly awful experience!”, said the Baby Oil.

    Actually, the Baby Oil application wasn’t the hardest part – the most difficult part was squeezing the oil out of the baby.

       12 likes

  15. LoneZombie
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    Yeti of Great Danger:
    Along the lines of the aforementioned Beast of Hollow Mountain stunt that truly looked dangerous, I offer the tree falling into the dining room in Squirm.According to IMDb, there wasn’t anything tame or tricked out about that stunt — they literally dropped a large tree from a crane onto the set, resulting in a one-take shot of actual panic from the actors.

    I have Squirm on Blu-Ray (seriously!) and Don Scardino says that, yes, they actually did drop the tree into the building with the actors inside. However, it fell so slowly that it was comical and the had to speed up the footage to make it not look hilarious. Apparently the actors were laughing at how bad it was and they had to edit around it.

    The Blu-Ray for the movie is actually pretty cool. There’s a Ballyhoo documentary with Don Scardino that is pretty fun. He seems like a really good guy. There’s also a bit of nudity in the movie that was cut out for MST, just FYI.

       7 likes

  16. duke of puddles
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    says:

    LoneZombie: I have Squirm on Blu-Ray (seriously!) and Don Scardino says that, yes, they actually did drop the tree into the building with the actors inside. However, it fell so slowly that it was comical and the had to speed up the footage to make it not look hilarious. Apparently the actors were laughing at how bad it was and they had to edit around it.

    The Blu-Ray for the movie is actually pretty cool. There’s a Ballyhoo documentary with Don Scardino that is pretty fun. He seems like a really good guy. There’s also a bit of nudity in the movie that was cut out for MST, just FYI.

    hm… i guess this would be one of the few times that i can say i was happy about the nudity being taken out.

       6 likes

  17. Terry the Sensitive Knight
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    For some reason I think more of animals than people

    Herc’s horse falling down in Moon Men
    Moffat ‘doing a tap dance on the rattler’s head’ in Ring of Terror
    Terry squishing a tarantula with a flat-iron in Giant Spider Invasion
    That poor kinkajou that keeps getting tossed around in King Dinosaur
    The bloodied iguanas of King Dinosaur
    The animals in Catching Trouble
    The Chickens of Tomorrow
    and many more

       13 likes

  18. Yeti of Great Danger
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    LoneZombie: I have Squirm on Blu-Ray (seriously!) and Don Scardino says that, yes, they actually did drop the tree into the building with the actors inside. However, it fell so slowly that it was comical and the had to speed up the footage to make it not look hilarious. Apparently the actors were laughing at how bad it was and they had to edit around it.

    The Blu-Ray for the movie is actually pretty cool. There’s a Ballyhoo documentary with Don Scardino that is pretty fun. He seems like a really good guy. There’s also a bit of nudity in the movie that was cut out for MST, just FYI.

    Learn something every day, thanks! Still, so many ways that stunt coulda gone wrong….

       4 likes

  19. mando3b
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    The poor actresses who have to look pleased and excited when the dubious leading man descends upon them with mouth open wide and fat tongue wagging. They probably see that big, pink, juicy maw in their nightmares for weeks afterwards.

       7 likes

  20. itsspideyman
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    Puma Man.

    Man, so much danger. An onion that throws people out of buildings, stranding people on roofs demand they put on belts, holding mustache guys by their nipple and throwing them at 45 degree angles breaking laws of physics…not including…..Donald Pleasance!!!

       9 likes

  21. The Original EricJ
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    Rock-climbing.
    Particularly the one second-act-disposable “Lost Continent” character who falls out of shot into the mist, presumably to a waiting stuntman-mat. (“I’m ALL right, I’m O-kay!”)

    Terry the Sensitive Knight: The animals in Catching Trouble

    And the stunts (deservedly) enacted on Ross’s plastic double in the “Catching Ross” segment. :)
    Particularly considering the risks of live flame on the SOL set.

    Also missing from the list was the Gecko-Roman Wrestling footage from Robot Monster. (“Ha, I win!”)

    Oh, and…er….Mitchell-joke, I guess? ;)

       1 likes

  22. Son of Peanut
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    Stunts, Schmunts!

    If Super Dragon, Puma Man and Diabolik have taught us nothing else (and they haven’t), it’s that the most impressive move any action hero can make is to play dead until your enemies get bored and go home.

    “To be left alone, the goal of any great hero!”

       9 likes

  23. littleaimishboy
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    In CATALINA CAPER, one of the (too) many hi-larious japes perpetrated by Fingers O’Toole has him casting a fishing line that accidentally snags a passing speedboat. Whereupon he is jerked out of his own boat and SLAMMED neck-first into the water, hard. Much as I hate the character, I actually gasped when I saw that.

    Not least because, based on watching the movie, I’m pretty sure nobody connected with that scene had the remotest idea what they were doing.

       6 likes

  24. Terry the Sensitive Knight
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    says:

    Son of Peanut:
    Stunts, Schmunts!

    If Super Dragon, Puma Man and Diabolik have taught us nothing else (and they haven’t), it’s that the most impressive move any action hero can make is to play dead until your enemies get bored and go home.

    “To be left alone, the goal of any great hero!”

    “What a great action hero, he just pawns off his duties on others…”

       6 likes

  25. The Original EricJ
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    says:

    littleaimishboy:
    In CATALINA CAPER, one of the (too) many hi-larious japes perpetrated by Fingers O’Toole has him casting a fishing line that accidentally snags a passing speedboat.Whereupon he is jerked out of his own boat and SLAMMED neck-first into the water, hard.Much as I hate the character, I actually gasped when I saw that.

    Not least because, based on watching the movie, I’m pretty sure nobody connected with that scene had the remotest idea what they were doing.

    Well, they knew they were ripping off Buster Keaton in “Beach Blanket Bingo”, but c’mon–Only Buster can do Buster stunts.
    You don’t just hand them to B-actors from Mork & Mindy.

       2 likes

  26. Torque the Dorque
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    Kevin Wallace:
    All of the actors 3 foot jump across the nearly bottomless chasm during the rock climbing sequence in The Lost Continent.
    You could tell that that actors in the film performed that stunt themselves without the aid of stunt doubles.

    Good one. Special recognition to Cesar Romero for saving Monkey Boy by grabbing his ass cheek to pull him to safety. I just love seeing Cesar’s smirk and Hugh Beaumont trying not to laugh out loud in the background.

       6 likes

  27. Scott Armstrong
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    Space Mutiny. Railing kills……..enough said.

       9 likes

  28. skrag2112
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    Don’t forget the most perilous stunt in any MST3K film; when Alan Hale stood up in ‘The Giant Spider Invasion’. He got danger pay for that.

       10 likes

  29. Ray Dunakin
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    says:

    Scott Armstrong:
    Space Mutiny. Railing kills……..enough said.

    There’s one where the guy ends up going head-first, instead of flipping over to land on his back as all the others were doing. I’ve always wondered if that was a stunt gone wrong.

       8 likes

  30. RedZoneTuba
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    The rabbit at the end of The Beast of Yucca Flats: One wrong roll by Tor and…rabbit paste.

       13 likes

  31. Colossus Prime
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    Angel’s Revenge: Working with the reanimated corpse of Jim Backus.

    Seriously though, gotta go with the mentioned hurling of real fire at the actors in “The Land That Time Forgot.” That is so insane.

       8 likes

  32. SmudgyTheBootblack
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    There’s a moment at the beginning of Kitten With A Whip where Ann-Margret jumps and briefly hangs on to a moving train. The train’s not moving at full speed but it’s still pretty impressive (Servo does a quick little “Wow!”), all the more so because she appears to do it barefoot and in a prison nightie.

       7 likes

  33. SmudgyTheBootblack
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    Multiple dudes slide down bumpy, dusty hills on their behinds in The Sinister Urge. Ed Wood also slaps the crap out of his own hand while pretending to hit another character. All dangerous stuntwork.

       4 likes

  34. IR5
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    In Operation Double 007 when the guy Dr. Connery is about to operate on jumps through a plate glass window.

       3 likes

  35. IR5
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    says:

    LoneZombie: I have Squirm on Blu-Ray (seriously!) and Don Scardino says that, yes, they actually did drop the tree into the building with the actors inside. However, it fell so slowly that it was comical and the had to speed up the footage to make it not look hilarious. Apparently the actors were laughing at how bad it was and they had to edit around it.

    The Blu-Ray for the movie is actually pretty cool. There’s a Ballyhoo documentary with Don Scardino that is pretty fun. He seems like a really good guy. There’s also a bit of nudity in the movie that was cut out for MST, just FYI.

    Were there nude worms or antiques- or just the red head stick girl?

       3 likes

  36. Brock Lee Rubberband
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    Master Ninja 2 – At the end of the thrilling motorcycle race the stunt double for shag haired Crystal Bernard Persuasion gets his/her legs run over by a motorcycle. It looks very painful. Crow calls it a human speed bump.

    Little goofy doofy Mikey from Teenage Strangler just had to do his own stunts. It’s in his contract. Look it up. I’m sure he thought to himself “How dangerous could riding a bike be?”. Immortalized forever on film is his run-in with a fence post. Every time I see that scene I grow more and more convinced it wasn’t planned to go that way. But holy cow it’s one of the funniest things ever caught on film.

    The stunt girls who had to rub oil on Watney’s back.

       6 likes

  37. DaveJ3k
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    I know I’m late to the party but speaking for the animal side of this, the hunting dog in Red Zone Cuba that goes through the barb wire fence makes me cringe every time I think of it. His handler is trying to step on the barb wire to hold it down for the dog but does a horrible job and the barb wire rakes along the dogs stomach and gonadial region as the dog tries to get through. Ugh. Crow comments that the dog is going to be barren. For sure. Another reason to hate on Coleman Francis.

       5 likes

  38. EAG46
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    Rifftrax Live movie, “Carnival of Souls”, when the van nearly hits the protagonist and she ducks out of the way. The guys remark “WOW that’s more dangerous a stunt than Jean Claude Van Damme ever did!” Seriously I hope the actress ordered dessert at dinner after that day’s shooting. And wine.

       1 likes

  39. Ken McElhaney
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    From Rifftrax, “The Sword and the Sorcerer”. When Xusia (Richard Moll) is tossed off the cliff early in the movie, the stuntman (Jack Tyree) missed the air bags and died. For some sick reason, they kept the shot in the film.

       0 likes

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