You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

 

Attack of the B-movie scientists

Giant mutant beasts are dangerous — but not if they’re too big to walk, says a biomechanics professor.

Michael LaBarbera, a professor of biomechanics at the University of Chicago, has gained a reputation as a man unafraid to tackle life’s knottier mysteries. He once wrote a paper explaining why animals don’t have wheels. Most famously, he is the author of “The Biology of B-Movie Monsters,” a treatise in which he explored the science behind films like “Them!” and “Attack of the Giant Leeches.” And his findings represent good news (for humans, anyway): The shrinking, enlarging, and sundry biological tinkering employed in creature-feature disaster flicks of the 1950s and ’60s would have been a disaster mainly for the creatures themselves.

Subscriber Log In

You have reached the limit of 5 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.