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City in the Sea (1965)

War-Gods of the Deep (original title)
Unrated | | Adventure, Fantasy, Horror | 26 May 1965 (USA)
In 1903, in Cornwall, a group of locals discover an underwater city, dating back to 1803, that hides a society of smugglers and aquatic creatures.


Jacques Tourneur, Ishirô Honda (uncredited)


Charles Bennett (screenplay), Louis M. Heyward (screenplay) | 2 more credits »




Complete credited cast:
Vincent Price ... The Captain, Sir Hugh
Tab Hunter ... Ben Harris
David Tomlinson ... Harold Tufnell-Jones
Susan Hart ... Jill Tregillis
John Le Mesurier ... Rev. Jonathan Ives
Henry Oscar ... Mumford (as Harry Oscar)
Derek Newark Derek Newark ... Dan
Roy Patrick ... Simon
Herbert the Rooster Herbert the Rooster ... Herbert the Rooster


Set on the Cornish coast in 1903, the film features a group of people discovering an underwater society of smugglers who never age living in a lost underwater city along with their gill-man slaves. Written by Jeremy Lunt <durlinlunt@acadia.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A fantastic journey to a lost empire one thousand fathoms beneath the sea! See more »


Unrated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


There were creative differences and production conflict between producers Daniel Haller and George Willoughby according to actress Susan Hart and screenwriter Louis M. Heyward See more »


At the end when the under water volcano erupts forcing flames above the water, the water stays perfectly calm. See more »


The Captain: Atlantis? Perhaps; a name is as good as another.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At cast credits' end: "And not to forget, Herbert!" [Harold's rooster] See more »


Featured in Going Deep with Tab Hunter (2015) See more »


The City in the Sea - My People, My World - The Hunting Party
Written and Conducted by Stanley Black
Performed by Stanley Black Orchestra
See more »

User Reviews

Palatable Saturday matinée item.
15 February 2015 | by Hey_SwedenSee all my reviews

A couple of respectable elements assemble here for a decent fantasy feature: source material from master of horror Edgar Allan Poe, a capable director in Jacques Tourneur, and the consistently amusing film star Vincent Price. While ultimately it lacks the imagination, budget, and style to be anything more, it's still acceptable entertainment of this kind.

Ben (Tab Hunter) is an American living on the Cornish coast at the turn of the 20th century. When mysterious forces kidnap area resident Jill (Susan Hart), on whom Ben is sweet, he sets out after her, with the doddering artist Harold (David Tomlinson) in tow. (Oh, and not to forget, Harolds' pet rooster Herbert.) They soon discover a strange underwater civilization, ruled by the domineering captain (Price). The captain, upon being led to believe that Ben is a professor of immense knowledge, wants to pick his brain on what to do in the event of a cataclysmic volcanic eruption.

As part of the package, the captain and his men exploit local "gill men". They're NOT as cool as the Creature from the Black Lagoon, but the masks aren't bad either, and they're not bad characters. Considering that A.I.P. probably controlled expenses a lot, the sets and production values are still respectable enough. The movie is shot in the 2.35:1 aspect ratio and is fairly colourful. The score by Stanley Black is also nice. Tourneur gets down to business quickly and the pacing & editing are adequate. Most of the cast & crew credits are saved for the end.

Hunter is a handsome and engaging hero. The beautiful Hart is a likable enough heroine. Tomlinson handles all of the comedy relief duties and is delightful. John Le Mesurier is excellent as helpful old Reverend Ives; Henry Oscar, Derek Newark, and Roy Patrick co-star. Price is magnetic as always as our villain, and the lines from the Poe story flow off of his tongue with the greatest of ease.

The viewer may not enjoy this quite as much as they'd like to, but it remains watchable for most of its 85 minute run time.

Sadly, director Tourneurs' final feature film.

Seven out of 10.

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Official Sites:

MGM Studios [United States]





Release Date:

26 May 1965 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

City in the Sea See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)


Color (Pathecolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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