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in 3-D!

U.S., 1954
Directed by Jack Arnold
Starring Richard Carlson, Julie Adams, Richard Denning
Approx. 79 mins. 3-D Film Archive restoration, courtesy Universal Pictures.


SPOOKS in 3-D!
U.S., 1953
Directed by Jules White
Starring The Three Stooges (Moe, Larry, Shemp)
Approx. 16 min. 3-D DCP restoration courtesy Sony Pictures.

Pre-JAWS underwater terror as intrepid scientists search the Amazon for clues to the Missing Link and its prehistoric past, but find instead a “Gill Man” with both a nasty streak and a healthy fascination with Julie Adams and her tight white bathing suit. Plus Spooks (1953): The Three Stooges in what’s probably the best 3-D short ever! “The special lens developed by Scotty Welbourne for underwater shooting produces a layered image: in the foreground, rippling water and floating seaweed flow into and over the audience; the Gill Man, in the middle distance, swims in and out of the seaweed; in the third layer are other swimmers and fish. At times, with sinuous, dancelike movements, the Gill Man swims out of the second layer and into the audience. When the Gill Man sees a fetching female swimmer in a white swimsuit, he mimics her movements as Welbourne’s camera floats alongside the two swimmers, capturing their two-tiered, sensuous pas de deux while projecting us into the water alongside them. The ads promised that ‘sheer, stark terror grips you in underwater 3-D,’ but the underwater scenes with their undulating movements are more sexy than scary: the Creature, who embodies primordial male desire, wants to merge with rather than murder the floating woman in white.” – Foster Hirsch


“Director Arnold was an early pioneer of the art of playing on the fears of the average human being—as Spielberg did in the seventies with JAWS and Spielberg was reportedly heavily influenced by the brooding, menacing style of Arnold’s atmospheric film…Strong on atmosphere and plot, but with a low budget, AN “EXCELLENT EXAMPLE OF HOW TO MAKE A GOOD MONSTER MOVIE.”
– Phil Hardy

“The 3-D lensing adds to the eerie effects of the underwater footage, as well as to the monster’s several appearances on land. The below-water scraps between skin divers and the prehistoric thing are thrilling and will pop goose pimples on the susceptible fan.”
Variety (1954)

“The routine story is mightily improved by Arnold's sure sense of atmospheric locations and by the often sympathetic portrait of the monster.”
– Time Out (London)

“Archetypal 50s science fiction…Jack Arnold has a flair for this sort of thing.”
– Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader

Film Forum