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Swimming near a Mexican village that has been terrorized by a sea monster, Julie Blaie (Anne Kimball), and American artist, is terrified when an object rises to the surface. It turns out to be a one-man submarine piloted by biologist Steve Dunning ('Stuart Wade' (qb)). Later an abalone diver vanishes and Julie faints after seeing the monster's eye rise from the sea. Pablo (Wyott Ordung) and Tula (Inez Palange) plot to offer Julie as a sacrifice to their gods. Pablo deliberately attracts a shark while Juilie is skin-diving, but she escapes, and her line snags an object that Steve and Dr. Baldwin (Dick Pinner) establish as part of a huge sea monster. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Producer Roger Corman got the idea for the movie while reading a Los Angeles Times article about a one-man submarine manufactured by Aerojet General. He phoned them and asked them if he could use it in a film, telling them that he couldn't pay them but they'd get free publicity. According to Corman they were delighted. See more »
As the film opens, and the camera pans to a landscape where "no white man has ever been," at the top right of the screen a car can be seen traveling down Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, where this scene was filmed. See more »
A low key monster movie from producer Roger Corman (his first) and director Wyott Ordung. What struck me as creepy were the rules the monster played by -- werewolf rules. He only came out at night and he only came into his own when the moon was full. He didn't rush about like one of those "humanoids from the deep" (another Corman production) and he didn't eat flesh (cow excepted). He simply menaced and eliminated his enemies off-screen. I liked that. I could handle that.
I was always very impressed by the pedal-powered submarine. It was like something the Professor from "Gilligan's Island" might have pieced together. I wanted one of those. It reeked of adventure. I was also impressed by the film's title, an evocative title if ever there was one. I loved the title "Monster From The Surf", too, but after suffering through that one, I was happy to stick to the ocean floor.
The score, as mentioned by another reviewer, really is effective and plain eerie, and the film's cinematography never betrays its poverty row budget.
Corman knew, from the beginning, that good characters are the foundation of any good movie, whatever its genre, and this, his first, is a tinpot classic with charm and presence.
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