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Tarantula (1955)

Approved | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 20 February 1956 (Sweden)
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1:50 | Trailer
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 (Leo G. Carroll) 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 (John Agar), is puzzled by the strange case and, with Deemer's recently arrived (and very pretty) assistant, Stephanie "Steve" Clayton (Mara Corday), 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:

Researchers seeking clue! Can anything escape it? See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first of four movies in which Clint Eastwood played a pilot, the others being "Escapade in Japan", "Lafayette Escadrille" and Firefox (1982). See more »

Goofs

When Matt Hastings enters the hotel for the first time, another gentleman walks out and shuts the door. You can see his shadow falling across the scenic background of the street. 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

Featured in The Movie Orgy (1968) See more »

User Reviews

 
The second best 1950's big bug movie !
6 December 2004 | by monkeys-4See all my reviews

This one has a special place in my memories ! I grew up in New Mexico near the desert, and whenever they showed this one on the late night science fiction Saturday night TV thriller show, I was afraid to walk to school and back on Monday! As I have grown up over the last forty years, I have come to appreciate it as a well crafted science fiction near classic! Jack Arnold directed many good sci-fi movies in the 1950's, but there is no doubt this was the creepiest! Next to the superior "THEM", released the year before (at a different studio), this UNIVERSAL STUDIOS chiller was , for my money, the second best of the giant bug movies of that decade! You will never look at the desert the same way again. Actress MARA CORDAY impressed me so much in this one, that I named one of my daughters after her! JOHN AGAR gave a great performance, and this one led to him doing a string of more horror and sci-fi movies for the next decade or two! It helped that they used a real Tarantula (named TOMORROW), instead of a fake one, and Clifford Stine's special effects will convince you that spider is really 100 feet tall! Another plus is Henry Mancini wrote some of the music score! So, I recommend this one to all those that hate creepy crawlers of any kind! Get out the can of RAID! But, you had better make it a really big can !!!

Signed, Baron Beast


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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
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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