B-Sides: Sing a Song of Yeti, Giant of the 20th Century
Prepare for the most indescribable theme song to a schlocky European b-movie since Yor, the Hunter from the Future! Prepare to witness more Yeti crotch than the eyes can handle! Prepare for the theme to the 1977 Italian-Canadian King Kong knock-off Yeti, Giant of the 20th Century!
One of the most entertaining bad movies of the 1970's, Yeti, Giant of the 20th Century is an Italian production shot in Canada and then badly dubbed into English that was designed to piggyback off the success of the previous year's King Kong remake.
Watching Yeti, Giant of the 20th Century is like watching King Kong after licking too many toads. The monster is an actor with an extremely expressive face attired in a fur suit with a head of puffy hair that would make Tina Turner proud.
Thawed out from several millennia of sleep, the Abominable Snowman bonds with a boy, develops the hots for a girl, becomes all the rage in Canada, and earns the wrath of the energy cartels after his likeness becomes a financial boondoggle for a jolly oil baron. While the "8th Wonder of the World" on film has climbed up the Empire State Building, the World Trade Center, and even Tokyo Tower, when the "Giant of the 20th Century" goes berserk, he climbs down the tallest hotel in all of Toronto.
I consider it something of a travesty that Yeti, Giant of the 20th Century has been allowed to fall into the crevices of cinematic obscurity. You listening, Shout Factory? This one has everything: an old scientist who dresses like "Where's Waldo?", a billionaire who looks like Norm from "Cheers" dressed like old school Doctor Who, a mute kid, Lassie, highly-paid corporate assassins that seem more like small-time crooks from a Seventies cop show, giant phone booth mid-air monster defrosting, fishbone hair brushing, hotel rooftop photo ops, elevator yo-yo'ing, death by toe jam, fake monster foot fu, out of scale models, terrible green screen effects, even worse dubbing, some of the greatest movie monster facial expressions of all time, and more Yeti crotch to fill the screen than you ever thought one movie could deliver.
It also has that special something that elevates any b-movie to the upper echelon of schlock: an unforgettable theme song.
How does one even describe the Yeti, Giant of the 20th Century theme? Part of the difficulty stems from not even being entirely sure what the lyrics are much of the time. The music itself - what style of music is that? Hasidic disco? Performed by a band created specifically for the film appropriately named The Yetians; the only thing about this group I am certain of is English cannot possibly be their first language.
You can thank (or blame) me for the music video accompanying this indescribable song. I set out to string a series of scenes together to try to tell the story of the movie in order; and without even trying, somehow, some of the movie moments I chose strangely sync up with the song, even if only ironically.
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