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At Devil's Crag, near the mountain village Pine Ridge, some livestock is found
horribly mutilated, & a fter a time even a man is found killed. The
superstitious mountain folks are quick to believe in some supernatural cause,
ince in Devil's Crag there's an Indian burial ground, & crazy Indian Joe
(Billy Dix) does only fuel their fears, but for sheriff Parker (former
B-Western star Bob Steele) it is pretty clear who's to blame, the town's only
intellectual, geologist Wayne Brooks (Ed Kemmer), who visits Devil's Crag on a
regular basis. Parker even tries to arrest him but has to let him go due to
lack of evidence.
... & what does Brooks do ? He takes the first opportunity to lead
someone to Devil's Crag, archeologist Cleveland (Morris Ankrum) & his
lovely daughter Janet (Sally Fraser).
Cleveland is actually looking for the body of renegade conquistador Vargas,
dubbed the Diablo Giant due to his impressive height, who is said to have died
around Devil's Crag some 500 years ago. Cleveland & Brook even find traces
of the Diablo Giant, even think they find his body enclosed in stone, but when
they decide to wait for the night before excavating it, the next day the Diablo
Giant (Buddy Baer) is gone ... As it turns out, he was kept enclosed in
stone in suspended animation for 500 years, & once relased again he has
nothing better to do than go on a killing spree (in full conquistadores armour
no less) ...
Soon, a local girl, Ann (Jolene Brand), is killed, & since sheriff
Parker finds a way to tie it to Brooks, & since Brooks has no alibi, &
his suspicions about the Diablo Giant make little sense, Parker arrests him.
Brooks can escape though, & when the sheriff recaptures him & while
doing so the 2 of them run across the Diablo Giant, the sheriff begins to see
the truth in Brooks' words & starts forming a posse to hunt down the
But hunting it down proves to be harder than it seems as the giant is not
easily harmed by bullets (due to his armour) & is pretty good at throwing
rocks & sneaking up his adversaries from behind, & he shows no remorse
in killing each & anybody. So after a long & unsuccessful hunting-trip,
the posse returns to camp to contemplate thier next move, when teenage Charlie
(Gary Crutcher) - boyfriend of the murdered local girl Ann - decides to go to
hunt for the giant - who has since of course kidnapped Janet - on his own, but
only gets beaten up pretty badly ... but not badly enough to not being able to
tell Brooks where to look for the giant - in the old mill.
In the old mill, Brooks & the giant really fight it out, before the
giant drops to his death from a nearby dam ...
After having learned his trade in advertisment films, this was director
Cunha's first feature film, of course shot on a low budget & a tight
shooting schedule (allegedly it took only 60 days from the first day of
shooting to the completely processed & edited product, ready for
exhibition). Of course all these shortcomings show, especially in the central
villain, who is merely a big man in cheap make-up (one of the last jobs of Universal
Horror-make-up legend Jack Pierce - & not one of his better
ones), wearing the outfit of the Spanish conquistadores - which looks anything
but spooky. The movie is also marred by a few plotholes too big not to notice
(e.g. who has done the killings of lifestock & people before the
giant was released), however all this doesn't hurt the movie too much once you
accept it for what it is, a fun - if mindless - piece of drive-in fare that
should be seen as nostalgia at its best.