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Day of the Animals (1977) — Episode 38 — Decades of Horror 1970s

“For centuries they were hunted for bounty, fun and food… now it’s their turn” – the tagline for Day of the Animals  only hints at the madness hidden just below the surface of William Girdler’s often overlooked Nature Runs Amok classic. The film features Christopher George, Lynda Day George and Richard Jaeckel in lead roles with Leslie Nielsen stealing the film with his terrific supporting performance. The Black Saint and Doc Rotten tackle another groovy horror film from the 1970s.

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 38  — Day of the Animals  (1977)

On a lark, Doc stumbled across Day of the Animals on the Shudder horror movie streaming site. After watching the film from director William Girdler, a quick text to The Black Saint placed the film at the topic of this week’s Decades of Horror. The evidence was clear, it was time to discuss this late entry into the Nature Runs Amok craze of the Seventies with its large cast of characters, bizarre kills, a PSA approach to the depletion of the ozone layer and Leslie Nielsen. The Black Saint instantly agreed and episode 38 was in the can just like that.

As a huge fan of William Girdler, proclaiming The Manitou as his favorite horror film, The Black Saint has a lot to say about Day of the Animals. The film is nested between Grizzly and The Manitou in Girdler’s filmography. Often mistaken as a sequel to Grizzly, the film stands on its own with great performances, a direct fast-paced plot and heavy use of real animals as the antagonists. That is until Leslie Nielson’s character looses his flipping mind. Catch Andrew (The Fury) Stephens and Susan (Jaws) Blacklinie in supporting roles and be amazed at the awesome screen presence of Michael Ansara. Ha! Day of the Animals is a real treat as Doc Rotten and The Black Saint dive into what makes the film so special. This is episode 38!

We want to hear from you – the coolest, grooviest fans:  leave us a message or leave a comment on the site or email the Decades of Horror 1970s podcast hosts at theblacksaint@decadesofhorror.com or docrotten@decadesofhorror.com.

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Doc Rotten
Doc Rotten is the founder of Gruesome Magazine. He is also a film critic for Gruesome Magazine and the podcast host & producer for Horror News Radio, Monster Movie Podcast, Decades of Horror: 1970s, The American Horror Story Fan Podcast and Hannibal Fan Podcast. He is also co-host of the Dracula podcast on TV TALK and is a contributing reviewer for HorrorNews.Net and Widescreen Warrior. Doc a lifelong fan of horror films, sci-fi flicks and monster movies first discovering Universal Monsters and Planet of the Apes as a young child in the 1970's searching out every issue of Famous Monster of Filmland (and, later, Fangoria). Favorite films include Jaws, The Car, The Birds, The Tingler, Vampire Circus and The Exorcist. Still a huge fan of horror films from the 70s, Doc continues consuming horror films to this day for the site, for the podcasts and for the fun of it all.