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)
3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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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 ... 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:

Hour by hour he gets smaller - and _smaller_! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While the spider in the movie is clearly a tarantula, in Richard Matheson's book, on which this movie is based, the spider Scott Carey battles is a Black Widow. See more »

Goofs

When Scott approaches the bird behind the wire mesh, he is holding the piece of cake with his left hand. Next shot the piece of cake is in his right hand. See more »

Quotes

Scott Carey: The cellar stretched before me like some vast primeval plain, empty of life, littered with the relics of a vanished race. No desert island castaway ever faced so bleak a prospect.
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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 »


Soundtracks

The Incredible Shrinking Man Theme
Written by Foster Carling and Earl E. Lawrence
Played by Ray Anthony
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User Reviews

 
Thoughtful Sci-Fi
7 March 2001 | by mermattSee all my reviews

Instead of the typical blood and gore screaming sensationalism of many 1950s sci-fi films, this is an amazingly well thought-out film that is underplayed and even philosophical.

There are some amusing moments in the film, such as when we discover Scott in a dollhouse, but much of the story is handled seriously -- the topics of being different, surviving in an unsympathetic world, crass commercialism, and loneliness are well portrayed.

The theme of the film is what is really amazing. Despite the rather schlocky title, we are given a view of humanity's place in the universe. The final sequence is an imaginative portrait of the balance between the macrocosm and the microcosm.

The film is more than it first appears. Definitely see this one.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 April 1957 (Canada) See more »

Also Known As:

The Incredible Shrinking Man See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$750,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,580
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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