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Not Rated
Copyright 1957 AB-PT Pictures Corp.
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Ed - Scientist whose experiments with radioactive isotopes caused this mess.
  • Audrey - Female reporter, she's always snooping around but does she get chomped? Oh no...
  • Frank - Deaf mute guy, a giant locust eats him.
  • General Hanson - In charge of the defense of Chicago. You might recognize him from The Giant Claw.
  • Colonel Sturgeon - National Guard Commanding Officer, he charges off into battle. Presumed grasshopper chow.
  • The Giant Locusts - Huge grasshoppers (I mean big, elephant sized big.) created by radiation.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

Huge people chomping grasshoppers! Hehehehehe! Not only that, they're huge people chomping SUPERIMPOSED grasshoppers! A true b movie here, it starts off with something attacking two lovers parking (We don't get to see what, just the girl reacting to it.) and then a town is destroyed. Audrey stumbles across this breaking story, with the assistance of Ed and "I'm human bait" Frank we find the true horror is special effects. Pretty soon the ravenous insects have chewed their way through National Guardsman and Chicago is in peril. Mankind's only hope might be nuking Chicago to stop them! Can Ed find another way? Time is running out and you'll have to watch to find the answer... ...ah heck, he uses stereo equipment to imitate their call and drown them in the lake. The darn thing was filmed in 1956, like it's any secret. I really wanted to see more shots of people getting eaten, this is accomplished by showing the locust, then the person's face (contorted in fear), and shoving some suitable music in. You still need to see this just for the effect of grasshoppers walking around on photographs of buildings.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Radiation can render you deaf and mute.
  • Doing fifty miles per hour in a convertable will not mess your hair.
  • A mute guy trying to scream is ghastly but amusing.
  • Public disturbances, natural disasters, and giant grasshoppers are the responsibility of National Guard units.
  • Oversized insects prefer people over foliage.
  • Locusts screech before attacking.
  • Polygraphs work on giant grasshoppers.
  • Chicago looks like a photograph, I mean really...

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 7 mins - Not this road again. How many times are we going to see this scene? Well, in just one moment a dark then a light car will pass by...
  • 16 mins - A car phone? In 1956?
  • 20 mins - Those are some darn big tomatoes.
  • 23 mins - Here's that scene with the cars going by again...
  • 37 mins - How in the name of all that is common sense did a screeching grasshopper, the size of a dump truck, sneak up on them?
  • 47 mins - I'm pretty sure tanks and napalm will do the trick.
  • 56 mins - Ed, how exactly are you planning on catching a very large, very annoyed, grasshopper?
  • 70 mins - Observation posts my butt, those are snack stands for locusts.


  • Audrey: "Town of a hundred and fifty people just doesn't disappear."
    Ed: "This one did."

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note beginend1.wav Ed: "We saw Frank Johnson killed by a giant locust."
Green Music Note beginend2.wav Ed: "I think you'd better call in the regular Army Tom."
Col Sturgeon: "Where would I get off calling for the regular Army to handle some oversized grasshoppers?"
Green Music Note beginend3.wav Announcer: "The giant locusts have reached the Chicago south side and nearby suburbs."
Green Music Note beginend4.wav Ed: "Well, there's one thing I have to get myself, something that will tell me when I've succeeded."
Gen Hanson: "What's that?"
Ed: "A live giant grasshopper."

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 



 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipbeginend1.mpg - 1.6m
No, don't eat the mute guy!

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 2 [3] 4
Beginning of the End
Reply #17. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Electric Armpit
The movie "Them" about the giant ants seemed to be a relatively big budgeted high quality sci-fi-horror production. I believe "Beginning of the End" was made after "Them" and appears to be a quick and sleazy attempt to cash in on the giant bug fad, which is a part of the "End" charm.

I first saw this giant grasshopper epic on TV as a small child 40 years ago and took it quite seriously. Later on as a more discerning adult I grew to love it for its unabashed tackiness.
Beginning of the End
Reply #18. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:03 PM by Sora the B-Movie Alchemist
Like many, I saw the MST3K version.

And was I the only one who noticed the edge of the cardboard cutouts?

Violence: *
Goofiness: *** The eating of mute man was priceless
Monster: **
Actors: *
Overall: **
Beginning of the End
Reply #19. Posted on August 10, 2005, 11:32:29 AM by IT.
I saw this this movie and it was terrible.The only good scene I can remember was when a locust busted in on a lady getting out of the bathroom.A weak atempt to rip off THEM.
Beginning of the End
Reply #20. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by movietom
Being born in 1950 has it's advantages. This is the kind of movies and movie effects we kids grew up with. It's just as much fun watching it today as it was in the late 50s and early 60s. I just purchased this film on DVD and am awaiting anxiously to see it again after many years. Newer generations laugh at this stuff and it's sad they don't realize all the effects used nowdays had to have their roots somewhere. I'm still a big Harryhausen fan and
love this old B movie stuff, too. So you younger generations should be appreciative of these early pioneers' efforts. They paved the way for the new CGI graphics and such. So there !
Beginning of the End
Reply #21. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by pirateyoho!
This movie sucks horribly. It shouldn't even be called a movie. More like a world when bugs will rule the world.
Re: Beginning of the End
Reply #22. Posted on January 17, 2007, 08:03:33 PM by Scott Ferrell
Again with the car reference.  The snappy covertible Audrey is tooling aroung in is a 1956 Chrysler New Yorker, It was 4100.00 new.  That book on Korea must have been a smash hit for her to pick up that little number.   
Re: Beginning of the End
Reply #23. Posted on October 29, 2007, 08:33:05 PM by Scratch
My favorite line? "You can't drop an atomic bomb on Chicago!"
Well, of course you can dufus. hot
Re: Beginning of the End
Reply #24. Posted on November 11, 2007, 11:07:54 PM by David
This movie is a guilty pleasure for me. I lived in Ludlow. The town that was eaten by the Grasshoppers.  TeddyR
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