The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953)

Approved  |   |  Adventure, Horror, Sci-Fi  |  13 June 1953 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 4,460 users  
Reviews: 84 user | 52 critic

A ferocious dinosaur awakened by an Arctic atomic test terrorizes the North Atlantic and ultimately New York City.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Hubschmid ...
Prof. Tom Nesbitt (as Paul Christian)
Paula Raymond ...
Lee Hunter
Prof. Thurgood Elson
Col. Jack Evans
Capt. Phil Jackson
Corp. Stone
Steve Brodie ...
Sgt. Loomis
George Ritchie
Jack Pennick ...
Jacob Bowman
Ray Hyke ...
Sgt. Willistead
Paula Hill ...
Miss Ryan (as Mary Hill)
Michael Fox ...
ER Doctor
Alvin Greenman ...
First Radar Man
Dr. Morton
King Donovan ...
Dr. Ingersoll


As a result of an arctic nuclear test, a carnivorous dinosaur thaws out and starts making its way down the east coast of North America. Professor Tom Nesbitt, only witness to the beast's existence, is not believed, even when he identifies it as a "rhedosaurus" to paleontologist Thurgood Elson. All doubts disappear, however, when Elson is swallowed whole during an oceanic bathysphere excursion to search for the creature. Soon thereafter the rhedosaurus emerges from the sea and lays waste to Manhattan Island until Nesbitt comes up with a plan to try to stop the seemingly indestructible beast. Written by Doug Sederberg <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The seas master beast of the ages- raging up from the bottom of time See more »


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Parents Guide:






Release Date:

13 June 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Monster from Beneath the Sea  »

Box Office


$210,000 (estimated)


$5,000,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)


| (Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


(at around 38 mins) Prof. Elson (Cecil Kellaway) reads an article about a 1797 professor who was fired for claiming that he had seen leprechauns remove a tree. He continues "Today it's monsters instead of leprechauns". Tom Nesbitt (Paul Christian) then enters and asks "How certain are you there were no leprechauns?" Cecil Kellaway played a leprechaun in the 1948 film "The Luck of the Irish". See more »


The aircraft shown in the beginning approaching the bomb drop is a Douglas DC-3S. The speed announced by the person tracking the plane's progress is 360 mph. The top speed of the DC3S was 250 mph. It also is a cargo plane and has neither a bomb rack nor anywhere near the range quoted in the movie. See more »


[first lines]
Opening Narrator: This is Operation Experiment, a secret base far north of the Arctic Circle. Experiment was the codename for a top priority scientific expedition. These men arrived here on X-day minus 60. It has taken them the full two months to get ready. Today is X-day.
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Featured in The Movie Orgy (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

Classic 1950s Sci-Fi film
9 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Beast from 20,000 Fathoms is based on a Ray Bradbury story. An atomic explosion unleashes a dinosaur( don't these atomic tests ALWAYS cause something to wake up?) in the Artic. A scientist witnesses the dinosaur but nobody believes him. A professor helps locate the beast and finally the beast is destroyed at Coney Island. I don't want to give too much away in case you want to view it. The acting is very good. Two of my favorite B-movie actors are in this: Kenneth Tobey and Cecil Kelloway. Ray Harryhausen's effects are terrific. Eugene Lourie does a good job directing. The pace of the film keeps the viewer interested. This was the inspiration for Godzilla(1954-Toho Studios). This is a classic B-movie from the 50s that you will enjoy.

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