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The Giant Behemoth (1959)

Behemoth the Sea Monster (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Fantasy, Horror | 3 March 1959 (USA)
Marine atomic tests cause changes in the ocean's ecosystem resulting in dangerous blobs of radiation and the resurrection of a dormant dinosaur which threatens London.

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(story), (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Steve Karnes
...
Prof. James Bickford
...
John
...
Jean Trevethan
...
Dr. Sampson, the Paleontologist
Maurice Kaufmann ...
Mini Submarine Officer
Henri Vidon ...
Tom Trevethan
Leonard Sachs ...
Scientist
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Storyline

The dumping of radioactive waste in the ocean disturbs a prehistoric monster than can project electric shocks and radioactive beams. After terrorizing the English coast, it is discovered that if the creature is destroyed with conventional weaponry it would spread a dangerous amount radioactive contamination over the entire country, with this fact preventing the military from attacking the monster as it nears London. Written by Jeremy Lunt <durlinlunt@acadia.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Biggest Thing Since Creation! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

3 March 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Giant Behemoth  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The helicopters in the movie are a us h-5 dragonfly helicopter and a H-19 with RAF markings. See more »

Goofs

When the monster attacks the mini-sub, the close-up plainly shows the head of a completely different creature. See more »

Quotes

Steve Karnes: I feel Admiral, what we're facing is a marine animal of tremendous size and strength.
Admiral Summers: Do you mean to believe that a whale could've smashed through steel plates so high above the water line?
Steve Karnes: I didn't say a whale.
Professor James Bickford: Behemoth?
Steve Karnes: That's as good a name as any for now.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in It Takes All Kinds: The Making of Motel Hell (2014) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Well-done treatment of a standard sci-fi theme.
10 January 2005 | by (Virginia, United States) – See all my reviews

Director Eugene (Gene) Lourie made three similarly-themed giant monster flicks, beginning with 1953's 'Beast From 20,000 Fathoms' to 1961's 'Gorgo', with 'Behemoth' sandwiched in between. The story line is much like a myriad of other films of the era (and very much like 'Beast...") but this one is a cut above. This time, the irradiated creature (weren't they all during the 50s?) turns up in British waters. Unlike 'Beast' and 'Gorgo' (as well as Godzilla and the others), this Behemoth not only was a huge creature, but also had the ability to project 'electrified fields of radiation', causing people to literally burn to death. Scenes with Behemoth climbing out of the Thames, destroying buildings and burning people to death (even kids aren't spared) is pretty exciting. While close-ups of Behemoth are not realistic (compared to Ray Harryhausen's work in 'Beast'), the full-body scenes done by Willis O'Brien are very effective. The acting, untypical of these films, is actually pretty well done. Character actor Gene Evans and Hammer Films regular Andre Morell do splendid jobs, and the supporting cast is fine too. One can quibble over which of these films is the best, but I agree with an observation made in Psychotronic Encyclopedia of Film that The Giant Behemoth was "the scariest giant monster-on-the-loose film ever made." At least up to that point, anyway. Well worth having if you're a fan of old sci-fi & horror films.


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