The Lady from the Black Lagoon: Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick

The Lady from the Black Lagoon: Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick Review

The Lady from the Black Lagoon uncovers the life and work of Milicent Patrick—one of Disney’s first female animators and the only woman in history to create one of Hollywood’s classic movie monsters.

As a teenager, Mallory O’Meara was thrilled to discover that one of her favorite movies, The Creature from the Black Lagoon, featured a monster designed by a woman, Milicent Patrick. But for someone who should have been hailed as a pioneer in the genre there was little information available. For, as O’Meara soon discovered, Patrick’s contribution had been claimed by a jealous male colleague, her career had been cut short and she soon after had disappeared from film history. No one even knew if she was still alive.

As a young woman working in the horror film industry, O’Meara set out to right the wrong, and in the process discovered the full, fascinating story of an ambitious, artistic woman ahead of her time. Patrick’s contribution to special effects proved to be just the latest chapter in a remarkable, unconventional life, from her youth growing up in the shadow of Hearst Castle, to her career as one of Disney’s first female animators. And at last, O’Meara discovered what really had happened to Patrick after The Creature’s success, and where she went.

A true-life detective story and a celebration of a forgotten feminist trailblazer, Mallory O’Meara’s The Lady from the Black Lagoon establishes Patrick in her rightful place in film history while calling out a Hollywood culture where little has changed since.

Title:The Lady from the Black Lagoon: Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick

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    The Lady from the Black Lagoon: Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick Reviews

  • Ross Blocher

    The Lady from the Black Lagoon tells the fascinating story of Milicent Patrick, the designer of the iconic Creature (he of the eponymous Black Lagoon). Milicent's is a name that deserves to be recogni...

  • Paul

    The Lady from the Black Lagoon is a celebration of the life and shamefully overlooked work of Milicent Patrick. It's also an unflinching, from-the-front-lines recounting of Hollywood's toxic patriarch...

  • Jennifer

    photo creditphoto creditThe Creature from the Black Lagoon is a horror film that was released in 1954. It features a scaled and gilled monster which was created based on the design sketches of Milicen...

  • Jessica Miller

    Despite the title, I would not call this a book about the Lady from the Black Lagoon. This is a memoir about O’Meara researching Milicent Patrick’s previously unknown life with a lot of filler to ...

  • Scott S.

    Mallory O'Meara's The Lady from the Black Lagoon is both a great rabble-rousing biography and a social science text. The author has an axe to grind, but I think it actually works as a strength rather ...

  • Jon(athan) Nakapalau

    Have you ever heard of Milicent Patrick? She worked at Disney as one of the first female animators - then went to Universal and designed The Creature From The Black Lagoon...but her boss took credit f...

  • Bark

    I read this over the course of a few days, took no notes so will have no review because I've read two books since and my brain can't hold on to all of that information. The Lady From The Black Lagoon ...

  • Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)

    I had never heard the name Milicent Patrick until last year when this book began to appear on lists for upcoming releases.  I was immediately intrigued by the idea that a woman in 1950's Hollywood wa...

  • Margaret Sankey

    I wanted to love this book about a pathbreaking woman and her resounding legacy as a film effects and creature designer (whose legacy includes some explanations for the in-jokes in The Shape of Water,...

  • Chris

    Milicent Patrick was one of the most remarkable women working in Hollywood. After being one of Disney’s earliest female animators, she moved her talents onscreen, working primarily as a background e...