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The Giant Behemoth (1959)

Behemoth the Sea Monster (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Adventure, Drama | 3 March 1959 (USA)
Marine atomic tests cause changes in the ocean's ecosystem resulting in dangerous blobs of radiation and the resurrection of a dormant dinosaur that threatens London.

Directors:

Douglas Hickox, Eugène Lourié (as Eugene Lourie)

Writers:

Robert Abel (story), Allen Adler (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Gene Evans ... Steve Karnes
André Morell ... Prof. James Bickford (as Andre Morell)
Leigh Madison ... Jean Trevethan
John Turner ... John
Jack MacGowran ... Dr. Sampson, the Paleontologist (as Jack McGowran)
Maurice Kaufmann ... Mini Submarine Officer
Henri Vidon Henri Vidon ... Tom Trevethan (as Henry Vidon)
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Storyline

The dumping of radioactive waste in the ocean disturbs a prehistoric monster than can project electric shocks and radioactive beams. After terrorizing the English coast, it is discovered that if the creature is destroyed with conventional weaponry it would spread a dangerous amount radioactive contamination over the entire country, with this fact preventing the military from attacking the monster as it nears London. Written by Jeremy Lunt <durlinlunt@acadia.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Biggest Thing Since Creation! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 March 1959 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Giant Behemoth See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Black and White (archive material)| Black and White

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Many of the sound effects are taken from King Kong (1933), including Fay Wray's scream. See more »

Goofs

When the monster attacks the mini-sub, the close-up plainly shows the head of a completely different creature. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Sampson, the Paleontologist: Oh, it's heading for the Thames. They always made for the freshwater rivers to die. That's where their skeletons have been found - some irrestible instinct to die in the shallows that gave them birth. You know, all my life I hoped this would happen. Ever since childhood I expected it. I knew these creatures were alive somewhere, but I had no proof, scientific proof, and I had to keep it to myself, or my colleagues would have all laughed at me. See, no form of life ceases abruptly, and all those...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The writing credits for this film are locked by the WGA. However, the opening credits should read: Story: Robert Abel and Allan Adler (both uncredited) Screen Play: Eugène Lourié (as Eugene Lourie) Order #1,1,1 See more »

Connections

Referenced in It Takes All Kinds: The Making of Motel Hell (2014) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
While not as technically astute as some films of this time, it's still well made and worth seeing.
29 September 2011 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

This is one of the last films on which Willis O'Brien worked. If his name isn't familiar, he's the guy who brought King Kong to life through the miracle of stop-motion cinematography. His work led to the likes of Ray Harryhausen and it's quite enjoyable to watch his creatures come to life. However, I must point out that technically speaking, this is far from O'Brien's best work. In fact, I think the story is far better than the stop-motion special effects.

The story is about a giant marine dinosaur that seems to have been created through the typical menace in 50s films--nuclear radiation. At first, the monster appears in an isolated fishing village and its radioactivity kills or maims. Some (especially Evans) take this very seriously. Everyone does after it attacks London! Will the Brits be okay or are they all destined to be gobbled up like a stack of freshly baked scones?!

This film stars a rather unlikely actor--Gene Evans. Evans was hardly the handsome leading man type and is probably most famous for his gritty sergeant character from Sam Fuller's "Steel Helmet" as well as appearing in Fuller's "Shock Corridor". So, seeing him playing the intellectual scientist was a bit odd but it worked well enough. In fact, the acting all around was very good--no complaints. However, the special effects, at times, looked pretty bad--such as when the creatures is swimming underwater.

By the way, the ending was rather clever. Make sure not to miss it.


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