26 user 9 critic

The Flying Serpent (1946)

Approved | | Horror | 1 February 1946 (USA)
The demented archaeologist Dr. Andrew Forbes (George Zucco) discovers a living, breathing serpent creature known to the Aztecs as Quetzalcoatl (the Killer Bird God) and accidentally kills ... See full summary »


(as Sherman Scott)


(original story), (screenplay)

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Cast overview:
Ralph Lewis ...
Richard Thorpe
Hope Kramer ...
Mary Forbes
Jerry 'Jonsey' Jones
Wheaton Chambers ...
Louis Havener
James Metcalf ...
Dr. John Lambert (as James Metcalfe)
Sheriff Bill Hayes
Milton Kibbee ...
Hastings (as Miltin Kibbee)
Head of Inquest
Vance Bennett


The demented archaeologist Dr. Andrew Forbes (George Zucco) discovers a living, breathing serpent creature known to the Aztecs as Quetzalcoatl (the Killer Bird God) and accidentally kills his wife by giving her one of the beast's feathers, causing the creature to track her down and slaughter her. Now Dr. Forbes uses this twisted knowledge to extract revenge upon his enemies by placing one of the serpent's feathers on his intended victim and letting the beast loose to wreak havoc. Written by Jeremy Lunt <durlinlunt@acadia.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Relic of an ancient terror born a billion years ago!








Release Date:

1 February 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Killer with Wings  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Shot in 1945, not released until 1946. See more »


Mary Forbes (Hope Kramer) is referred to as the daughter of Professor Andrew Forbes (George Zucco) in the first half of the movie. Later she is called his stepdaughter. See more »


Mary Forbes: Doctor Lambert, I wish there had never been any such thing as Aztec Indians! Father does nothing but think, dream and talk Aztecs!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Director Jean Yarbrough's name spelled as ``Yarborough'' in credits. See more »


Referenced in Q (1982) See more »

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User Reviews

Mad scientist hordes treasure, sics reptilian bird on enemies
11 March 2012 | by (Minnesota) – See all my reviews

Archaeologist George Zucco has discovered an ancient Aztec treasure along with the mythical bird that guards it. He's mad, quite mad….He keeps the treasure hidden in a cave and visits it secretly.

Back in town, his step-daughter has noticed that he's been acting strangely—disappearing for days on end, talking about some great imminent discovery. She shares her concern with an ornithologist friend….who soon thereafter is found savagely murdered, his throat cut and all of the blood drained from his body. What is up? Did the ornithologist's death have anything to do with the mysterious feather that Zucco had dropped at his house?

Cut to New York: a radio station is sending (handsome young) mystery writer Dick Thorpe to New Mexico to investigate the strange crime and to broadcast daily reports from the field. As the plot thickens and bodies begin to pile up, Dick's daily remote broadcasts get better and better: "Ladies and gentlemen, there's been a murder at the studio. Professor Louis Havener was struck down by the feathered serpent as he stood at the window examining the feather we had just found....We'll be back on the air again tomorrow morning at the same time."

The radio writer and the step-daughter (Ralph Lewis and Hope Kramer – not household names for me, I'm afraid) eventually team up on the investigation; however, while the young couple are ostensibly the protagonists in the story, it is unquestionably Zucco who has the meaty role in the picture.

For example, why does he keep the treasure hidden? "Because it's mine. Mine, do you hear? All mine. I'm the richest man in the world!"

Oh, the bird is good, too. Special flying effects combined with a dramatic music score actually combine well enough to make the attack scenes just a bit spooky.

It's very silly, really not very good…but great fun nevertheless.

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

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