Years ago we ran a question from one of our readers, and turned to you all in hopes you had some idea — any idea — of which film she was inquiring about.
It was Felicia Hammer, who wrote to us asking if we knew the title of a movie she’d forgotten. We’ve been racking our brains about this ever since, and not coming up with an answer. We confess — we were and have been completely stumped.
Felicia recalled that the movie was about a tiny horse from a pre-historic land. Two cowboys who follow it into a canyon, and when they go through the canyon they encounter other animals from pre-historic times.
Sci Fi or movies heavy on computerized special effects are not big with either of us, but since Felicia was nice enough to ask for our help, the least we could do was to try and solve the mystery. We know how frustrating it is to partially recall a film you want to see again, but you simply cannot remember the name of its title.
So, we implored our informed readership, asking if they could help out a fellow movie lover. That was way back in the summer of 2011 — more than five years ago. (See our Aug. 9, 2011 blog partially headlined, A MYSTERY MOVIE — ANY IDEAS?)
Well, that blog finally — finally — drew an all-encompassing, four-word response received on Dec. 26 from Tracie Marie, who wrote: The Valley of Gwangi. Bingo! Mystery solved.
In our defense, 1969’s The Valley of Gwangi is a bit outside of this site’s primary concern, classic movies from the Thirties through the Fifties. But this Warner Bros. western/fantasy traces its creative roots to Willis O’Brien, who created the special effects for 1933’s King Kong.
O’Brien died a few years before the picture was made, and special effects animator Ray Harryhausen (he of the ‘Dynamation’ process) took over. The plot of The Valley of Gwangi is appropriately fantastical, and matches the specifics of Felicia Hammer’s inquiry all those years ago
Leading man James Franciscus plays a wild-west-show cowboy wishes to horn in the action of his entrepreneurial girlfriend T.J. (former Israeli fashion model Gina Golan) and take over her wild west show. The star of her show is a tiny horse, who is returned to its original valley habitat — which is indeed occupied by a platoon of living dinosaurs. The action takes off from there
So now we have it at last. Felicia Hammer meet Tracie Marie. We thanks them both for asking and answering. Now we have to catch up with the action taking place in The Valley of Gwanji.