Director – Seth Breedlove (Terror in the Skies, The Flatwoods Monster: A Legacy of Fear)
Starring – Cliff Barackman (Finding Bigfoot, American Bigfoot), Lyle Blackburn (American Nightmare, Return of the Jackalope), and Ronald Breedlove
Release Date – 2019
Rating – 3/5
Tagline – “…there’s something on Marzolf Hill”
I’ve always had an interest in cryptozoology and growing up in West Virginia is to blame. The state is home to some pretty amazing folklore and I became obsessed with it at a very young age. I remember finding books about haunted West Virginia and other stories when I was in fourth grade. Over the years my interest in these stories outside of the state has grown.
In recent years I’ve befriended Seth Breedlove and his documentary production company Small Town Monsters who has explored cryptids all over the country. Recently Seth and company took on Momo: The Missouri Monster and tackled it with a different approach. They combined their typical documentary style with that of retelling or reenacting in the look of the classic bigfoot films of the 70s. I was very interested in this approach and was lucky enough to snag a copy for review which is fitting considering I was just a few tables away from Seth last weekend at the Mothman Festival in Point Pleasant.
**Spoiler Alert**The documentary explores the sightings of a hairy cryptid in Louisiana, Missouri that coincided with a series of strange lights and UFOs in the area. The sightings is told through a series of interviews and scenes from a fictionalized unreleased b-movie that was uncovered and aired on Blackburn’s Cryptid Casefiles. **Spoiler Alert**
I knew this one was going to be different than the other Small Town Monsters’ productions. I knew that it combined elements of b-movie bigfoot flicks from the 70s and their unforgettable documentary style. I appreciated what they were going for but in the end I kind of wished that the film was more of a typical documentary without the gimmicks.
The interviews in this one is very informative but somewhat thin. I can only assume that is why the STM added the Blackburn’s Cryptid Casefile approach to give the film some depth. I liked the interviews and the information we obtained from them. The acting in the unreleased film is a little uneven. Some of the cast delivers an almost funny and awkward performance that comes off as intentional while others show their inexperience in front of the camera.
I liked the 70s drive-in era bigfoot inspired reenactments that was played off as an unreleased film. However, I didn’t care for the Blackburn’s Cryptid Casefile approach to the film. After watching the film I can only be honest and say that I wish STM would have went into this one making a standard documentary and then released the Momo b-movie as a stand alone film. Seth has an eye for film and I could only imagine how amazing these two would be by themselves. Combined, the film just feels clunky and uneven.
Finally, the film is edited smoothly between the topics with the unreleased film spaced throughout. We get some animated sequences that looks good as well and the bigfoot costume is something straight out of a double feature at the drive-in. Overall, Momo: The Missouri Monster is a bold approach to a cryptid documentary with some very interesting elements. I would have enjoyed the film more if some stuff was left out but it is still a very entertaining film as is. Check it out now on DVD from Small Town Monsters.