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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 (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:

Bullets Can't Stop It! Dynamite Can't Kill It! 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

Second uncredited theatrical movie of Clint Eastwood (Jet Squadron Leader). His first being Revenge of the Creature (1955). See more »

Goofs

Early in the film, as Dr. Deemer goes into the lab and puts on his apron, he wears a shirt with short sleeves, but when he puts his arms in the isolation box, the sleeves are long, like a lab coat, then short again in the wide shot when he pulls his arms out. 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 »

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User Reviews

 
A Good Edition To The DVD Sci-Fi Ultimate Package
21 October 2006 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

This is one of those films which starts off with a bang, slows down with a big lull in the middle section, and then finishes strong.

Kudos to the special-effects people to make the giant tarantula scenes look pretty good, even by today's standards some 50 years after this was made. Many times, the huge spider looks real while it's crawling down the road. I would like to have seen one or two more scenes of it in that middle section which would have kept viewers on edge throughout the film. Instead, it got a bit talky in spots.

Anyway, it still entertained and it was fun for me to see Leo G. Carroll, a guy I saw each week growing up watching "Topper" on television. Carroll played, by far, the most interesting character in this movie.

The acting was good in here, too, once again above '50s sci-fi standards. It was one of the better entries in the recently-released Sci-Fi Ultimate DVD set, offered at Best Buy. A pretty good transfer, too.


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