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Film Details

Production companyKing Brothers Productions Ltd
Country of originGreat Britain
ProducerEADES, Wilfred
DirectorLOURIE, Eugene
Script/AdaptationLORING, John
HYATT, Daniel
PhotographyYOUNG, F.A.
Sound recordingBRAMALL, John
Art directionSCOTT, Elliott
Executive producerKING, Frank
KING, Maurice
Associate producerLEICESTER, James
Music composerLAVAGNINO, AngelO'Franscesco
Music performanceSinfonia of London
CastBill Travers (Joe Ryan), William Sylvester (Sam Slade), Vincent Winter (Sean). Christopher Rhodes (McCartin), Bruce Seton (Professor Flaherty), Joseph O'Connor (Professor Hendricks), Martin Benson (Dorkin), Barry Keegan (1st mate), Dervis Ward (bo'sun), Maurice Kauffman (reporter), Basil Dignam (Admiral Brooks), Thomas Duggan (1st naval officer), Howard Lang (1st colonel), Connie Tilton, David Wilding, Michael Dillon, Peter Brace, Peter Perkins (stunt artists).
Release date1960
SummaryOpportunistic English salvage divers Joe Ryan and Sam Slade are searching for treasure from a ship near the small island of Nara, which is off the west coast of Ireland. After an underwater eruption in which their ship is damaged, they go ashore where they meet McCartin, a secretive Government employee who discourages them from staying. Their interest in the area is reinforced when one of their divers surfaces with gold coins in his hand. However, they become alarmed when he dies from what seems to be fright. After further undersea disturbances a 65-foot-tall monster emerges from the sea and terrifies the locals. They confront McCartin, who shows him other treasure he has recovered from the seabed, while he has also accumulated 1,000-year-old artefacts from the Viking period. Joe and Sam have met young Sean, a boy who is being looked after by McCartin. While diving for the treasure, the divers shift their interest from the treasure and from killing the monster, towards capturing it. When this is successfully achieved, the salvagers are visited by Professors Flaherty and Hendricks, two palaeontolo- gists from the University of Dublin. They think they have convinced Joe and Sam to deliver the monster to Dublin for scientific research, but they do not reveal they have received an offer of £30,000 plus a percentage of the gate by Dorians Circus of Battersea Funfair, London if they deliver the monster there. Sean stows away on the boat and tries to set the monster free. The men decide to take the monster in London, where it becomes a major news and public event as it is being transported through the city streets. It is renamed Gorgo after the Greek mythological multi-headed monster. Though they are making money from the monster's attraction, they and the authorities become disturbed when reports start arriving of the sighting of another monster. After an investigation, it is established that Nara Island has been destroyed, while a 200-foot monster is making its way towards London. The British Air Force and Navy are assigned to try to kill the monster, but despite massive bombardment, the monster breaks through the submarine protection barriers in the Thames Estuary and makes its way upriver. After further unsuccessful military attempts to kill it, there is widespread public panic. Tower Bridge, the Houses of Parliament, and Piccadilly Circus are destroyed. The monster makes its way to Battersea Funfair where its offspring is being held. When attempts to electrocute the monster with four-million volts of electricity fail, the monster frees its offspring. The two monsters go down the Thames and make their way out to sea, as a smiling Sean is pleased that mother and offspring are reunited. (V).
NoteUSA Rel 10/2/1961 (Philadelphia).
The Irish exterior scenes were filmed at Coliemore and Bulloch
Harbours, Dalkey, Co Dublin. Also filmed at M-G-M British Studios,
Borehamwood, England. When reversed, the name Nara Island spells the
Irish island of Aran.
ReferenceDC No. 8520, 9/10/1961%; FD Vol. 118, No. 19, 27/1/1961:5; F&F Vol. 8,
No. 3, Dec 1961:31; HR 25/1/1961; KW No. 2819, 12/10/1961:10; MFB Vol. 28 No. 334, Nov 1961:155; MPH Vol. 222, No. 3, 28/1/1961996; Var 25/1/1961. AFI Cat 1961-1970:421; Gifford 13011: Oct 1961.
DistributorBritish Lion Film Corporation (GB)
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp (USA)
Production creditsp.c: King Brothers Productions Ltd, p: Wilfred Eades, exec. p: Frank King, Maurice King, assoc. p: James Leicester, d: Eugene Lourie, sc: John Loring, Daniel Hyatt from a story by Lourie, Hyatt, dop: F A Young, c. op: Jack Mills, sp. c. effs: Tom Howard, a. c: Douglas Adamson, sc. super: Pamela Davies, ed: Eric Boyd-Perkins, art d: Elliott Scott, m: Angelo Francesco Lavagnino, m.c: Muir Mathieson, m.p: The SiNíonia of London, s: John Bramall, rd. super: A W Watkins, s. ed: Peter Thomton, Archie Ludski, 1st a.d: Douglas Hermes, 2nd a.d: Joe Marks, p. super: George Mills, p. s: Jean Clarkson, prop. buyer: Bryn Siddall, ward: Harry Haynes, make-up: Stella Morris, public relations: Herman King, a. to p: Jack Labow, GB distr: British Lion Film Corporation; USA distr: Metro- Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
Genre/CategoryFeature Film Drama
Monster Film

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