6.5/10
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106 user 78 critic

Tarantula (1955)

Approved | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 20 February 1956 (Sweden)
A spider escapes from an isolated Arizona desert laboratory experimenting in giantism and grows to tremendous size as it wreaks havoc on the local inhabitants.

Director:

Jack Arnold

Writers:

Robert M. Fresco (screenplay), Martin Berkeley (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
John Agar ... Dr. Matt Hastings
Mara Corday ... Stephanie 'Steve' Clayton
Leo G. Carroll ... Prof. Gerald Deemer
Nestor Paiva ... Sheriff Jack Andrews
Ross Elliott ... Joe Burch
Edwin Rand Edwin Rand ... Lt. John Nolan
Raymond Bailey ... Townsend
Hank Patterson ... Josh
Bert Holland ... Barney Russell
Steve Darrell ... Andy Andersen
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Storyline

In the Arizona desert, Professor Gerald Deemer is experimenting with growth hormones in the hopes of finding a way to increase the world's food supply. His partner in the project was recently found dead in the desert, suffering from a disease that normally takes years to advance but, in his case, seems to have afflicted him in only a few days. The local doctor, Matt Hastings, is puzzled by the strange case and, with Deemer's recently arrived (and very pretty) assistant, Stephanie Clayton, tries to figure out what is going on. When cattle remains are found in the countryside, evidence points to a giant tarantula as the culprit. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Even Science was stunned! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 February 1956 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Giant Tarantula See more »

Filming Locations:

Yuma Desert, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,100,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mara Corday was the lead female in this film with Clint Eastwood appearing briefly at the end, her last four films Clint Eastwood was the star and she had small brief roles. See more »

Goofs

The positions of the books on the table when the tarantula attacks the house with the heroine in it. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Airport Attendant: What's the score, Doc?
Dr. Matt Hastings: Twins. Cutest things you ever saw.
Airport Attendant: Hey, they're keepin' ya busy these days.
Dr. Matt Hastings: The desert, it gives people wonderful ideas. Check the ship, will ya?
Airport Attendant: You betcha.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fun monster movie with serious undercurrent...
15 October 2006 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

Ostensibly a quickie b-flick targeted at matinée audiences, "Tarantula" certainly isn't High Art but it does take a refreshingly serious tack on its story. Mad scientist in small desert town experiments with growth serum, accidentally unleashing one humongous spider on the terrified locals. Very nice atmosphere, decent special effects, not-bad performances. John Agar is the stalwart hero, and of course he's coupled with a pretty girl prone to screaming (Mara Corday as Stephanie, whom Agar affectionately calls 'Steve'). Probably more fun today for nostalgic adults than modern preteens, and certainly not as gripping as "Them!", but still a well-enough produced creep-show. Look fast for Clint Eastwood in an uncredited bit. ** from ****


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