doc films
facebook twitter instagram newsletter

SATURDAY 1 - Dinosaurs Plus! on Film

Dinosaurs ruled the planet for some 140 million years up until the end of the Cretaceous period, some 66 million years ago...

Yet they have hardly been forgotten. Dinosaurs have long fascinated the public, a fact that did not escape the attention of Hollywood. Even now, when dinosaurs and other creatures inspired by them (such as those seen in the Godzilla movies) are cast in the lead roles, large audiences respond favorably to the films. Chicago, in particular, plays an important role in the history of dinosaur films. The first animated film and the first film about a dinosaur—Gertie the Dinosaur—premiered in Chicago at the Palace Theater on February 8, 1914. This series brings dinos and more back to Chicago. It includes some of the important life action and animated films featuring dinosaurs and the creatures inspired by them that wowed audiences over the course of 110 plus years.

This series is a filmic supplement to the print material appearing in the Exhibition Bibliosaurus! that runs January 2 through April 26, 2024, 2024 in Special Collections at the Regenstein Library.

Sponsored by The Brothers Valauskas

The Giant Behemoth (1959)

The Giant Behemoth (1959) still

Eugène Lourié · 80m · Digital

Kicking off the series with Godzilla's cousin! Marine atomic tests resurrect a terrifying, nuclear-breathing dinosaur, who sets its eyes on destroying the city of London. Two scientists set out to put a stop to the monster's rampage! A bit more graphic than other giant-monster films – many a poor human is burnt to a nuclear-crisp – The Giant Behemoth is a riveting watch, with special effects by stop-motion action pioneer Willis O'Brien!

Saturday, January 6th 1:00PM

Fantasia (1940)

Fantasia (1940) still

David Hand and James Algar et al · 115m · DCP

When thinking of Disney’s Fantasia, marching magic brooms and a sorcerer’s hat usually comes to mind. But what about dinosaurs? Set to Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, Fantasia's longest segment documents the beginnings of life from the Big Bang through the dinosaur age. Watch as dinosaurs spend their day-to-day eating food--and running away from being food--until sudden disaster strikes.

Saturday, January 13th 1:00PM

One Million Years B.C. (1966)

One Million Years B.C. (1966) still

Don Chaffey · 92m · DCP

A remake of the 1940 American film, Don Chaffey’s One Million Years B.C. is set in a prehistoric society where humans and dinosaurs coexist. Tumak, a chieftain’s son in exile, meets Loana, a member of the more advanced Shell tribe. Together, they must fight against man and dino alike. A must-see for Ray Harryhausen’s impressive stop-motion effects and leading lady Raquel Welch’s iconic image.

Saturday, January 20th 4:00PM

The Lost World (1925)

The Lost World (1925) still

Harry O. Hoyt · 110m · DCP

Before his work on King Kong, Willis O’Brien tested out his chops on The Lost World, the first feature-length film to employ stop motion animation. O’Brien’s groundbreaking use of stop-motion effects laid the foundation for future monster movies and wonderfully depicts Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s tale of the eccentric Professor Challenger’s expedition to South America––where he believes dinosaurs still exist.

Saturday, January 27th 4:00PM

Godzilla Raids Again (1955)

Godzilla Raids Again (1955) still

Motoyoshi Oda · 78m · DCP

Godzilla's back! Two pilots encounter a new Godzilla locked into battle with Anguirus–a fiercesome, giant Ankylosaurus–and must scramble to find a way to defeat the terrifying monsters. With newly designed suits for easy movement and hand puppets for close-up scenes, Godzilla Raids Again is the next exciting step in the Godzilla franchise. Preceded by Gertie the Dinosaur.

Saturday, February 3rd 1:00PM

Son of Godzilla (1967)

Son of Godzilla (1967) still

Jun Fukuda · 84m · DCP

Son of Godzilla takes place not in Japan, but on Sollgel Island. Here, Godzilla plays the dual role of a powerful tool of destruction and single father, grappling with how to raise his adopted son, Minilla. As he teaches Minilla basic monster skills, like fire breathing and roaring, Godzilla and his son must also battle with the giant praying mantises known as Kamacuras and the gigantic spider Kumonga.

Saturday, February 10th 1:00PM

Destroy All Monsters (1968)

Destroy All Monsters (1968) still

Ishirō Honda and Jun Fukuda · 88m · DCP

In the distant future of 1999, monsters live together on Monsterland. However, the alien species Kilaaks threaten this peace by taking forceful control of the island and its monsters, unleashing them to wreak havoc. Meant to be the last Godzilla film, Destroy All Monsters is a grand Kaiju battle royale, pitting beloved monsters like Mothra, Rodan, and, (of course), Godzilla against Earth’s major cities and the fearsome Ghidorah.

Saturday, February 17th 1:00PM

All Monsters Attack (1969)

All Monsters Attack (1969) still

Ishirō Honda · 70m · DCP

All Monsters Attack follows Ichiro Miki, a lonely young boy, who escapes his solitude and cruel peers through his dreams of the fantastical Monster Island. Here, he meets Minilla, the son of Godzilla, also mistreated by Gabara—a monster that shares the name of Ichiro’s bully. Notable for its speaking monsters and use of recycled stock footage, All Monsters Attack is also among Ishirō Honda’s favorite films.

Saturday, February 24th 1:00PM

The Valley of Gwangi (1969)

The Valley of Gwangi (1969) still

Jim O'Connolly · 96m · Digital

You’ve heard of Cowboys and Aliens… now get ready for cowboys battling dinosaurs! Centered on the mysterious Forbidden Valley where prehistoric creatures roam free, the ferocious allosaurus known as Gwangi is captured and displayed in a rodeo. Naturally, catastrophic mayhem ensues. Originally thought up by Willis O’Brien, Ray Harryhausen continued the project, creating its stop-motion effects.

Saturday, March 2nd 1:00PM