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Sh! The Octopus (1937)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Mystery, Thriller  |  11 December 1937 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.2/10 from 290 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 15 critic

Comedy-mystery finds Detectives Kelly and Dempsey trapped in a deserted lighthouse with a group of strangers who are being terrorized by a killer octopus AND a mysterious crime figure named... See full summary »


(as William McGann)


(screen play), (from plays by), 2 more credits »
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Complete credited cast:
Marcia Ralston ...
Vesta Vernoff
John Eldredge ...
Paul Morgan
Brandon Tynan ...
Captain Cobb (as Brandon Tyman)
Eric Stanley ...
David Dow Harriman
Margaret Irving ...
Polly Crane
Elspeth Dudgeon ...


Comedy-mystery finds Detectives Kelly and Dempsey trapped in a deserted lighthouse with a group of strangers who are being terrorized by a killer octopus AND a mysterious crime figure named after the title sea creature. Written by Marty McKee <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

11 December 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Oktapodi  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The transformation scene was done in much the same way the beginning part of the transformation was done on Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931). The actress was made up in exaggerated highlights and shadows (including her teeth) using a single color shade of makeup. When filmed through a filter the same shade as the makeup, it's invisible to the camera. Take the filter away and the makeup suddenly becomes visible. Besides a filter, the makeup can also be hidden by similar-colored light. This type of trick was only possible on black-and-white film. See more »


In many scenes, wires operating the octopus's tentacles can be seen. See more »


Detective Harold Kelly: You know this fella Clancy?
Detective Dempsey: No but he's Irish ain't he?
Detective Harold Kelly: Sure.
Detective Dempsey: About time the police department did something with the Irish.
Detective Harold Kelly: They should try to do something without the Irish.
See more »


Referenced in Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff (1949) See more »

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11 March 2008 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

Sh! The Octopus (1937)

** (out of 4)

Another version of The Gorilla but this time the old dark house is replaced with a lighttower and the gorilla is replaced with an octopus. Veteran character actors Hugh Herbert and Allen Jenkins play wannabe detectives trapped inside a lighttower with several others who are being attacked by the octopus. This version pretty much stays in tact with other versions and the other remake, which followed two years later with The Ritz Brothers and Bela Lugosi. Herbert and Jenkins aren't nearly as obnoxious and they do manage to get some good laughs. The octopus looks very nice and the scene where the killer "transforms" is quite memorable. The film moves at a lightening pace yet for some reason, one I don't know, the 56-minute running time felt overly long. This certainly isn't a bad movie but it's not a good one either.

8 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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