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 4,459 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


Prehistoric sea-giant rages against city! 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?


The "Coney Island Amusement Park" in the film is actually The Long Beach Amusement Park in Long Beach, California. The production was able to film at the park from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. See more »


In the shot of people fleeing down the subway steps to escape the beast, the monster is shown approaching from behind, but the building next to the steps collapses and rains debris down on the pedestrians before the monster has gotten close enough to destroy the building. 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 Fifties (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

50's monster action at its best.
31 January 2002 | by (Derby, England) – See all my reviews

Ray Harryhausen's first solo effort at stop-motion resulted in one of the best monster movies of the 1950's.

This was the first of the many rampage films of the 1950's and was a great success at the box office. Ray's stop-motion Redosaurus is magnificent, considering the low budget.

One of the best scenes in this movie is where the Rhedosaurus eats the policeman. The acting is rather good and the cast includes Kenneth Tobey (The Thing From Another World) and an early appearance from Lee Van Cleef before he stared with the 'carrot' in It Conquered the World.

I enjoyed this movie and rate it 5 stars out of 5. Great stuff.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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