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The Little Shop of Horrors (1960)

Unrated | | Comedy, Horror | 5 August 1960 (USA)
A clumsy young man nurtures a plant and discovers that it's carnivorous, forcing him to kill to feed it.

Directors:

, (uncredited) | 1 more credit »

Writer:

(screenplay)
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Horror

An exotic plant in a downtown flower shop convinces the storekeeper's meek apprentice to resort to gruesome measures to keep it alive and make it grow.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jonathan Haze ...
Jackie Joseph ...
Mel Welles ...
...
Myrtle Vail ...
Karyn Kupcinet ...
Shirley (as Tammy Windsor)
Toby Michaels ...
Shirley's Friend
Leola Wendorff ...
Mrs. Siddie Shiva
Lynn Storey ...
Mrs. Hortense Fishtwanger - Society of Silent Flower Observers of Southern California
Wally Campo ...
Det. Sgt .Joe Fink / Narrator
Jack Warford ...
Meri Welles ...
Leonora Clyde (as Merri Welles)
John Herman Shaner ...
Dr. Phoebus Farb (as John Shaner)
...
Dodie Drake ...
Waitress
Edit

Storyline

Seymour is a young man who works in a flower store. He manages to create a carnivorous plant that feeds on human flesh. Nobody knows about it, so Seymour and the plant become good "friends". The plant needs food to grow up, so it convinces him to start killing people. Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The funniest picture this year! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Horror

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 August 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Passionate People Eater  »

Box Office

Budget:

$27,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Charles B. Griffith stood off-screen providing the voice of Audrey Junior as a reference for the actors. The voice of the plant was supposed to be dubbed in by another actor in post-production, but Griffith's vocalization of the plant got laughs--and director Roger Corman was notoriously cheap--so his voice remained in the final print of the film. See more »

Goofs

Frank walks into Detective Fink's office, sits down and lights a cigarette. The cigarette remains in his mouth until a close-up shot, where it is missing. When the wide shot is resumed, the cigarette is back again. See more »

Quotes

Seymour Krelboin: Don't waste your pity on me, Audrey. I'm not worth it.
Audry Fulquard: Who says you're not?
Seymour Krelboin: Everybody.
Audry Fulquard: Yeah, I know.
See more »


Soundtracks

Deck the Halls
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung a cappella by Jonathan Haze
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A surprisingly funny piece of b-movie entertainment from Corman
25 July 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Mushnick's is a small florists in skid row – a dead end part of town that everyone knows about but nobody wants to know about. Business is not great, in fact it is awful – nobody wants to buy flowers when they can't be sure where their next meal is coming from. However the cleaning boy has nurtured a strange new plant up from seed and it seems to be getting interest. When he discovers it needs a few drops of blood to make it grow Seymour is the toast of the town with his employer very grateful for the increased revenue the visitors bring. However as it grows it begins to need more than a few drops and soon he is heading down a terrible, dark road.

Like many viewers I suspect, I came to this film after seeing the musical remake; as such I assumed that this would be a straight film in the b-movie genre that Corman is famous for. However I was taken by how amusing this film was because really this is as much a horror comedy as the musical is. From Seymour's alcoholic mother to the cop so hard that even the death of his son is met with a shrug, the whole film is full of darkly comic touches that drew some nice laughs from me. This comic approach helps the film because really it is a silly plot and the fact that the script was tongue-in-cheek meant it was easier to swallow, if you pardon the choice of words. As a horror it doesn't really work but it does have a slocky property that Corman films tend to have – not high quality but low budget, b-movie fun.

The cast match the material and all buy into the joke, watching them also shows that the cast in the musical are really pretty much just impersonate the actors here. Haze is enjoyably geeky and convinces throughout. Welles is funny and plays up to his ethnic caricature well. Corman regular Miller hasn't really got much to do but his face is always a ruggedly familiar and welcome sight. Joseph is not great but her performance suits the b-movie genre – likewise Campo and Warford (who are very funny as Dragnet style cops). Nicholson is pretty funny and was a curious find in a small cameo.

Overall this is not a great film but it is a great b-movie horror. Never taking itself seriously means that it can be darkly funny and take the audience along for the ride. To me it is just as funny as the musical even it is a different type of humour and it is worth checking out.


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