IMDb > The Thing That Couldn't Die (1958)
The Thing That Couldn't Die
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The Thing That Couldn't Die (1958) More at IMDbPro »


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David Duncan (written by)
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Release Date:
1959 (Turkey) See more »
THE MOST TERRIFYING MONSTER EVER! (original print ad - all caps) See more »
A psychically gifted young woman discovers a centuries-old crate buried on her aunt's ranch. Opening it... See more » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Drake's decapitation in sunny California See more (36 total) »


  (in credits order)
William Reynolds ... Gordon Hawthorne
Andra Martin ... Linda Madison
Jeffrey Stone ... Hank Huston
Carolyn Kearney ... Jessica Burns
Peggy Converse ... Flavia McIntyre
Robin Hughes ... Gideon Drew
James Anderson ... Boyd Abercrombie
Charles Horvath ... Mike
Forrest Lewis ... Julian Ash
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
George Alexander ... Guard (uncredited)
Phil Harvey ... Trooper Kennedy (uncredited)
Thomas Browne Henry ... Galleon Capt. Fletcher (uncredited)
Stuart Wade ... Trooper Swanson (uncredited)

Directed by
Will Cowan 
Writing credits
David Duncan (written by)

David Duncan  story "The Water Witch" (uncredited)

Produced by
Will Cowan .... producer
Original Music by
Henry Mancini (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Russell Metty (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Edward Curtiss 
Art Direction by
Alexander Golitzen 
Eric Orbom 
Set Decoration by
Russell A. Gausman 
Julia Heron 
Costume Design by
Bill Thomas (gowns)
Makeup Department
Bud Westmore .... makeup artist
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Marshall Green .... assistant director
William Mozier .... assistant director (uncredited)
Sound Department
Leslie I. Carey .... sound
Frank H. Wilkinson .... sound (as Frank Wilkinson)
Corson Jowett .... sound (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Clifford Stine .... special photography
Music Department
Joseph Gershenson .... music supervisor
Irving Gertz .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Hans J. Salter .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Herman Stein .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Other crew
Irvin Berwick .... dialogue coach (uncredited)
Luanna Sherman .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
69 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Did You Know?

The opening credits reused the music from the opening credits of This Island Earth (1955).See more »


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Drake's decapitation in sunny California, 13 September 2014
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

The Thing That Couldn't Die takes place on the California coast several centuries apart. The film concerns Satan worship and what Sir Francis Drake did about it on his round the world voyage which some have said made him the first European to see the coast of California.

Where today Andra Martin resides on Aunt Peggy Converse's ranch with plans to marry boyfriend William Reynolds. She's a girl with psychic gifts and feels something evil on the ranch.

The evil is a head and body buried in separate places some 300 years earlier by Sir Francis Drake who discovered one of his crew Robin Hughes in league with the Devil and worshiping him on the ship. Besides being a daring sailor and privateer without peer, Sir Francis Drake was a thoroughgoing Protestant and champion of the Reformation. He has Hughes executed by decapitation and as they do in these movies say if head and body are joined Hughes will rise again and lead the forces of darkness.

Well the skull is found and the head of Hughes is intact and forcing several people on the ranch to his will once they see him. Two deaths occur before Good does triumph over Evil.

This is a decent horror film although the Seventies spawned a slew devil worship films and compared to those bloody things this one is mild. But the atmosphere created is good and murky. I only wish Robin Hughes had a bit more to do. His character was a rich one and I'll bet that since this film only runs 69 minutes a lot of him was left on the cutting room floor.

Fans of the spooky horror genre will like The Thing That Couldn't Die.

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This movie scared the cr*p out of me as a child leighpc
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