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Monster from the Ocean Floor (1954)

Approved | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 21 May 1954 (USA)
Julie, an American on vacation in Mexico, spots a giant, one-eyed amoeba rising from the ocean, but when she tries to tell the authorities, no one believes her. She finally teams up with a marine biologist in an attempt to destroy it.

Director:

Wyott Ordung

Writer:

Bill Danch (screenplay) (as William Danch)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Anne Kimbell ... Julie Blair
Stuart Wade Stuart Wade ... Steve Dunning
Dick Pinner Dick Pinner ... Dr. Baldwin
Wyott Ordung Wyott Ordung ... Pablo
Inez Palange Inez Palange ... Tula
Jonathan Haze ... Joe (as Jack Hayes)
David Garcia David Garcia ... Jose
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Storyline

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 <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

TERROR STRIKES!... FROM BENEATH THE SEA See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 May 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

It Stalked the Ocean Floor See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$28,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Palo Alto Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Besides serving as producer, Roger Corman also drove the camera and equipment truck. See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

Julie Blair: Why do you suppose there were no reports of this thing until 1946? What could have happened then to start the story?
Steve Dunning: 1946? Well that's when the Bikini underwater expeirments were set off, maybe that started something.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hidden Values: The Movies of the Fifties (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Respectable Start For Roger Corman
20 April 2014 | by gavin6942See all my reviews

Julie Blair (Anne Kimbell) is an American vacationing at a sea-side village in Mexico. She hears stories about a man-eating creature dwelling in the cove.

This film is a low budget science fiction film in every sense of the term low budget. Director Wyott Ordung (1922–2005) doubled as an actor (playing Pablo), and this was his first of only two times in the director's chair. In fact, his only real experience before this was a writer on another low budget flick, "Robot Monster".

Most notable is the producing credit of Roger Corman, who took a modest $30,000 budget and earned more than ten times that back at the box office. No small feat, especially from someone just starting out in the business. This also marks a collaboration between Corman and cinematographer Floyd Crosby; Crosby had been making films over twenty years, but would be possibly best known later on for shooting Corman's finest films.

This was also the debut of Jonathan Haze, a gas station attendant that filled the small role of Joe. He must have done something right, because Corman hired him for numerous productions over the next decade, including the starring role of Seymour in "Little Shop of Horrors".

As for the film itself, there are things to like and things that could have been improved. The monster is actually rather cool looking, and when revealed is no disappointment. To use him sparingly, they also have a shark and an octopus, which may cause a few people to jump. The film is also rather short -- only 64 minutes -- so there is little time for the pace to slow down. Variety praised the film, calling it an "oddity" but "well-done", noting that "Corman's production supervision has packed the footage with commercial values without going overboard."

The negatives are few, but worth pointing out. The forced romance was a bad idea, though probably almost necessary for a film of its day. This is somewhat compensated for by having the main character be a heroine rather than a hero -- not the strongest female lead, but a female lead nonetheless. The biggest issue is the sound. Clearly they had not invested in a boom mike, because scenes were either overdubbed, or the conversations were drowned out by the ocean waves...

While not the best film of 1954, it has its historical merits and is fun in its own way. For a low budget film now sixty years old, I think it holds up respectably well.


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