7.7/10
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The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957)

Not Rated | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 17 May 1957 (France)
When Scott Carey begins to shrink because of exposure to a combination of radiation and insecticide, medical science is powerless to help him.

Director:

Jack Arnold

Writers:

Richard Matheson (screenplay), Richard Matheson (novel)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Grant Williams ... Scott Carey
Randy Stuart ... Louise Carey
April Kent ... Clarice Bruce
Paul Langton ... Charlie Carey
Raymond Bailey ... Doctor Thomas Silver
William Schallert ... Doctor Arthur Bramson
Frank J. Scannell Frank J. Scannell ... Barker (as Frank Scannell)
Helene Marshall ... Nurse
Diana Darrin ... Nurse
Billy Curtis ... Midget
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Storyline

Scott Carey and his wife Louise are sunning themselves on their cabin cruiser, the small craft adrift on a calm sea. While his wife is below deck, a low mist passes over him. Scott, lying in the sun, is sprinkled with glittery particles that quickly evaporate. Later he is accidentally sprayed with an insecticide while driving and, in the next few days, he finds that he has begun to shrink. First just a few inches, so that his clothes no longer fit, then a little more. Soon he is only three feet tall, and a national curiosity. At six inches tall he can only live in a doll's house and even that becomes impossible when his cat breaks in. Scott flees to the cellar, his wife thinks he has been eaten by the cat and the door to the cellar is closed, trapping him in the littered room where, menaced by a giant spider, he struggles to survive. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A fascinating adventure into the unknown! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 May 1957 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Die unglaubliche Geschichte des Mr. C See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$750,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As Scott shrank, he should have felt colder and colder as his body became too small to retain heat. Most small mammals compensate for this by having fur and excess body fat. See more »

Goofs

After Scott and Louise argue in the living room and she leaves, a line running from the rug to the table legs is visible on the floor. This is the edge of the forced perspective set. See more »

Quotes

Scott Carey: A strange calm possessed me. I thought more clearly than I had ever thought before - as if my mind were bathed in a brilliant light. I recognized that part of my illness was rooted in hunger, and I remembered the food on the shelf, the cake thredded with spider web. I no longer felt hatred for the spider. Like myself it struggled blindly for the means to live.
See more »

Alternate Versions

When originally released theatrically in the UK, the BBFC made cuts to secure a 'A' rating. All cuts were waived in 2006 when the film was re-rated with a 'PG' certificate for home video. Note: The running time on the BBFC website for the 1957 theatrical release mentions a run time of 91 minutes 48 seconds with an indication this is the submitted run time prior to any cuts. It is not clear if this was a longer version of the film which is widely known to run just 81 minutes (77 minutes on PAL media). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Brainscan (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

The Incredible Shrinking Man Theme
Written by Foster Carling and Earl E. Lawrence
Played by Ray Anthony
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Gripping fantastic classic about a good guy exposed a rare mist and then suffers a mysterious shrinkage
13 July 2011 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

A Sci-Fi masterpiece stunningly mounted and directed . Almost beyond the imagination . . A strange adventure into the unknown ! . After being contaminated by what may or not to be radioactive mist , a good man finds himself turning smaller and steadily shedding the inches and pounds until he reaches actually minuscule proportions . A suburban husband named Scott Carey (Grant Williams) begins to shrink because of exposure to a combination of radiation and insecticide and medics (William Schallert) are powerless to help him . He becomes a media darling but starts to feel humiliated and expressing cruel anger against his wife (Randy Stuart) . In his home's basement he battles lethal threats as spiders , floods or drops of water in an endless and surreal environment . At the ending terminates in a strangely and moving religious assertion of what it really means to be alive.

Universal classic of the 50s with numerous unforgettable scenes including a rousing showdown with a giant cat and a common house spider. Good performance by Grant Williams in that a strange fog causes him to dwindle becoming into unfortunate man who forces him to view the world in a diverse light than ever before. Intelligent and brooding screenplay by Richard Matheson with many memorable dialogs and including philosophical and pantheist speeches ; furthermore based on his own novel . Joseph Gershenson's impressive score with thrilling strains. Fine special effects highlight and good Art Direction by Alexander Golitzen .

This well-edited motion picture is compellingly directed by Jack Arnold in his best foray into the Sci-Fi genre. He reigns supreme as one of the greatest filmmakers of 50s science , achieving an important cult popularity with classics as "The Creature from the Black Lagoon," and its follow-up titled "Revenge of the Creature" that was a nice sequel . "Tarantula" was likewise a lot of amusement . This "The Incredible Shrinking Man" attained his greatest enduring cult popularity , it's a thought-provoking and impressive classic that's lost none of its power throughout the years . Arnold's final two genre entries were the interesting "Monster on the Campus" and the outlandish "The Space Children¨ . It's followed by an inferior Sci-Fi comedy titled ¨Incredible shrinking woman (1981)that results to be a semi-spoof , being directed by Joel Schumacher in his first movie , with Lily Tomlin , Charles Grodin and Nead Beatty. Rating : Better than average . Well catching for amazing acting, philosophical and existential argument and really peculiar transformation .


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