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The Alligator People (1959)

Approved | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 16 July 1959 (USA)
A woman in a hypnotic state recounts to two doctors the details of a horrific experience from her past life that began with the mysterious and sudden disappearance of her husband.

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(screenplay), (story) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Dr. Eric Lorimer
...
Manon (as Lon Chaney)
...
Dr. Mark Sinclair
...
...
Paul Webster
Douglas Kennedy ...
Dr. Wayne MacGregor
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Storyline

A newlywed couple sit in a train. The husband receives a frantic telegram. He gets off at a station to make a phone call, the train pulls away without him on it, and that's the last his wife sees of him. Years later after a long search she finally tracks him down on his family's southern estate where she discovers that a failed medical treatment has turned him into an alligator mutant. Written by Jeremy Lunt <durlinlunt@acadia.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Her honeymoon turned into a nightmare of horror! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 July 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El caimán humano  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Originally released on a double bill with Return of the Fly (1959). See more »

Goofs

When Paul Webster is on the operating table, shirtless, only his head and hands are partly alligator, and not the other areas of his visible skin (no doubt due to budgetary reasons). See more »

Quotes

Dr. Mark Sinclair: Paul...
Paul Webster: Yes...
Dr. Mark Sinclair: I'll never be able to tell you how sorry I am.
Paul Webster: Don't blame yourself, I certainly don't. Who can know everything? You're not God, Mark.
Dr. Mark Sinclair: I feel as if I've been playing at it... and been punished.
Paul Webster: Forget it.
See more »

Connections

Featured in 100 Years of Horror: Scream Queens (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent Sci-Fi of the late 1950's
30 January 2010 | by (Louisiana) – See all my reviews

There are many fine reviews on this film that summarize the story of "The Alligator People," the fine actors, and judge the film. What is contained here is two basic points: (1) the memories that stood out to an eight year old boy who watched the movie from the back seat of his older brother's 1947 Chevy; and (2) an analogy that may have been overlooked by other reviewers.

First, the movie was terrifying and yet compelling to this reviewer from his perspective of first viewing this classic at the age of eight years old. My older brother took me to the Big Sky Drive-In Theater on Indian School Road in Phoenix, Arizona, to see not one but two horror movies ("Return of the Fly" was the first of the twin bill). While the sense was to "not" watch the monsters by staying securely down on the floor board behind the front seats, the compulsion to "see" the Alligator man was too strong...I simply could not take my eyes off of the terrific sight of a man morphing into an alligator. While I loved the movie, I must confess, that to this very day, I still do not extend my arms or legs over the side of my bed. After all, one can never know what might be lurking under the bed.

Secondly, I think there is a not so subtle analogy correlated to the location of the filming...at least the location that I've been led to believe was the site of the film. Carville Hospital for the treatment of Hansen's Disease (Leprosy), at Carville, Louisiana. No doubt, the idea of Leprosy and the swampy Louisiana bayou's living fossils...alligators was a combination that had to happen. For years, people with Hansen's disease were feared as their condition was greatly misunderstood. The disease caused it's victims skin to seemingly rot away in a hideous fashion. With the United States only Leprosorium in the deep bayou regions of South Louisiana, it's plain to see that "The Alligator People" is a weird blend of fears and mystery that twists together a scary creature with a nod towards the horrific disease of leprosy. Even in Bible times, leprosy was so feared that people with that condition were isolated and rejected. Only a miracle could bring healing and restoration. In "The Alligator People," a scientist became maddened with his obsession to provide a drastic miracle cure for people who had a mysterious skin disease...skin like that of alligator skin. Filmed in Louisiana, what better site for such a story that Carville, Louisiana? But even if it was filmed at some other Louisiana location, I suppose I will continue to adopt this analogy.

If you're like this reviewer, you will watch this movie and all of its seemingly ancient special effects and rubber costumes with a wide-eyed wonderment. I still can't take my eyes off the Alligator Man.


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