Irwin Allen is regularly referred to as the father of disaster films, while his contributions to the genre are immeasurable, he was hardly the only game in town when it came to cinematic destruction. Enter Bernard Kowalski‘s Krakatoa, East of Java. The enduring 1969 effort has developed a somewhat infamous reputation over the years as its special effects were completed first, before the script…making the film an early precursor to the set piece-driven blockbusters that rule movie theaters today. Based on actual events (but laced with inaccuracies aplenty, i.e. Krakatoa was actually west of Java), the movie follows a group of circa-1882 treasure hunters including Maximilian Schell and Brian Keith as they attempt to locate a sunken ship loaded with pearls off the Indonesian coast. It’s a race against time for this fearless bunch, as the volcanic island of Krakatoa is about to blow. Really though the story is secondary here, as the movie exists first and foremost to create one of the biggest natural explosions of all time. And what a spectacle it is! The movie was originally released in the immersive Cinerama format, making it a spectacle packed with true movie magic. With the film recently hitting Blu-ray and DVD, you’ll have another chance to check out this exciting drama filled with fiery chaos and non-stop excitement.