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The Abominable Snowman (1957)

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A kindly English botanist and a gruff American scientist lead an expedition to the Himalayas in search of the legendary Yeti.

Director:

Val Guest

Writer:

Nigel Kneale (story and screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Forrest Tucker ... Tom Friend
Peter Cushing ... Dr. Rollason
Maureen Connell ... Helen Rollason
Richard Wattis ... Peter Fox
Robert Brown ... Ed. Shelley
Michael Brill Michael Brill ... McNee
Wolfe Morris ... Kusang
Arnold Marlé Arnold Marlé ... Lhama (as Arnold Marle)
Anthony Chinn ... Majordomo (as Anthony Chin)
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Storyline

At a remote lamasery in the Himalayas, scientist John Rollason studies rare mountain herbs with the help of his wife Helen, and associate Peter, while awaiting the arrival of an American named Tom Friend. Over Helen's objections and warnings by the High Lama, he sets out with Friend on an expedition to find the elusive Yeti, accompanied by another American named Shelley and a young Scotsman, McNee, who claims to have seen the thing. Footprints are found in the snows and McNee seems queerly affected the closer they get to their quarry's likely habitat but the biggest shock to Rollason is discovering Friend is a showman who only intends to exploit their find, with Shelley his game hunter/marksman. The conflict between science and commercialism only increases when an enormous anthropoid is shot, and the horror only increases as the party realizes the other Yeti intend to retrieve their fallen comrade and have powers to do so which seem extra-human. Written by Rich Wannen <RichWannen@worldnet.att.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

WE DARE YOU TO SEE IT ALONE! See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Horror

Certificate:

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Details

Official Sites:

Hammer Films

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

October 1957 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Abominable Snowman of the Himalayas See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was originally to be called "The Snow Creature" before it was realized that director W. Lee Wilder had beaten them to it with The Snow Creature (1954). See more »

Goofs

It's day in the long shots, but then back to night in the close-ups of Forrest Tucker. See more »

Quotes

Dr. John Rollason: I'm wondering... wondering how old that face is. It's seen a long life.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Hammer shot this in an anamorphic widescreen process which they credited as "Hammerscope." When it was released in the United States, the promotional material credited it as "Regalscope." See more »

Alternate Versions

The U.S. home video release by Anchor Bay uses the uncut British version. See more »

Connections

Featured in Is It Real?: Ape-man (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Abominable Snowman (1957)
17 October 2008 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

Tom Friend is about to embark on a life changing expedition, his aim? To find the fabled creature known as the Yeti, or Abominable Snowman. Joining him on the trip is botanist John Rollason, whose scientific interest is totally at odds with Friend and his trapper companion, Ed Shelley. As the expedition moves deeper into the Himalayas, bad luck and differences of opinions dog the party, and as the confrontations draw closer it becomes apparent that the Yeti is not a dumb animal to be killed or captured.

Adapted by Nigel Kneale from his own BBC play, The Creature, The Abominable Snowman is one of the finest early offerings from Hammer Studios. The long running {to this day} stories of a giant beast living up in the Himalayas is of course interesting stuff, much like Nesse up in her Loch, it seems their worth will never ever fade. Thankfully there is a ream of intelligence in this picture, forgoing out and out shocks in the name of horror, director Val Guest has treated Kneale's story with the utmost respect. This is more of a character story as regards men with different ideals on a supposed legend, we barely see the creature until the wonderful last quarter, we don't need to because there are other creatures on this expedition, it's very adroit and accomplished in its telling.

The cast do not let the material down, Hammer stalwart Peter Cushing takes the role of Rollason, Forrest Tucker {Sands Of Iwo Jima} is Friend, Robert Brown {The Masque of the Red Death} is Shelley and Maureen Connell is wonderful down in the village as Rollason's fraught wife, Helen. Now in this day and age we can get good digital transfers of old black and white classics, and here the Regalscope Widescreen brilliantly captures the snowy landscapes, firmly enhanced by Arthur Grant's gorgeous monochrome photography. So what you waiting for? The technical side is great, the story is of course excellent, all that remains to say is that the ending is perfect and seals the deal.

A British treasure. 8/10


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