“Beware of the Blob!” One of the great cult classics, The Blob melds ’50s schlock sci-fi and teen delinquency pics even as it transcends these genres with strong performances and ingenious special effects. Made outside of Hollywood by a maverick film distributor, a crew experienced in religious and educational shorts, and a collection of theatrical talent from Philadelphia and New York, The Blob helped launch the careers of superstud Steve McQueen and composer Burt Bacharach. —The Criterion Collection
Fascinating and genuinely great film. The formal approach, which Jerry below linked to Dreyer, is oddly and at times terrifying cosmic and reserved. The tightly and economically presented cross section of 50s Americana is slyly subverted by an encounter with the unknown, pitting a remarkable Steven McQueen against an all-consuming void. A strange experience.
Sure, you have to wonder if this film would have warranted inclusion in Criterion's catalog if it wasn't Steve McQueen's breakout vehicle, but "The Blob's" influence has been felt far and wide in genre cinema, from "Creepshow" to "Spider-Man 3" and beyond, and the movie itself is not without its low-budget charms. As a Technicolor relic of America's past, the film tackles Cold War paranoia while offering sympathy to the ranks of misunderstood youngsters who filed into the cinema on a weekly basis back in 1958. A 27 year-old Steve McQueen plays his teenage character as a strange mix of James Dean and Jerry Lewis, and yet somehow comes across as endearing. It's evident even here that the actor was destined for greatness.