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X the Unknown (1956)

Approved | | Horror, Sci-Fi | May 1957 (USA)
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0:31 | Trailer
A radioactive, mud-like creature terrorizes a Scottish village.

Directors:

Leslie Norman, Joseph Losey (uncredited)

Writers:

Jimmy Sangster (story), Jimmy Sangster (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dean Jagger ... Dr. Adam Royston
Edward Chapman ... John Elliott
Leo McKern ... Insp. 'Mac' McGill
Anthony Newley ... LCpl. 'Spider' Webb
Jameson Clark Jameson Clark ... Jack Harding
William Lucas ... Peter Elliott
Peter Hammond ... Lt. Bannerman
Marianne Brauns Marianne Brauns ... Zena, the Nurse
Ian MacNaughton Ian MacNaughton ... Haggis (as Ian McNaughton)
Michael Ripper ... Sgt. Harry Grimsdyke
John Harvey John Harvey ... Maj. Cartwright
Edwin Richfield ... Soldier Burned on Back
Jane Aird Jane Aird ... Vi Harding
Norman MacOwan Norman MacOwan ... Old Tom (as Norman Macowan)
Neil Hallett ... Unwin (as Neil Hallet)
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Storyline

British Army radiation drills at a remote Scottish base attract a subterranean, radioactive entity of unknown nature that vanishes, leaving two severely radiation-burned soldiers... and a "bottomless" crack in the earth. Others who meet the thing in the night suffer likewise, and with increasing severity; it seems to be able to "absorb" radiation from any source, growing bigger and bigger. What is it?? How do you destroy a thing that "feeds" on energy? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Can anything escape its terror? See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

May 1957 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La incógnita X See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The U.S. version shown on TV for many years contained only introductory music under the Warners Brothers title, with no opening title music. The British version, featured on later DVD versions, contained James Bernard's opening title music. See more »

Goofs

There's no explanation given for why the creature returns to the fissure after every meal. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Adam Royston: [checking out entry points to an enclosed room] Came in through the grill.
Dr. Kelly: But, Adam, that's impossible. Whatever it was that did all this certainly wasn't small enough to come through there.
Dr. Adam Royston: Well, how small is ten thousand gallons of oil?
Inspector McGill: What do you mean?
Dr. Adam Royston: About ten thousand gallons of oil would take up a pretty large area, wouldn't it?
Inspector McGill: Ay.
Dr. Adam Royston: And yet ten thousand gallons of oil COULD come through the holes in that grill, couldn't it?
See more »

Connections

Featured in The World of Hammer: Sci-Fi (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Serenade for Strings in E Major, Op. 22: V. Finale: Allegro vivace
(uncredited)
Written by Antonín Dvorák
See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent early Hammer science fiction
7 April 2004 | by chris_gaskin123See all my reviews

X the Unknown is an excellent sci fi movie from Hammer. It was made a year after The Quatermass Experiment.

Drilling at a remote location in the Scottish Highlands attracts a strange force from below. It turns out to be a blob like creature that feeds on radiation, which gets bigger as a result. After several people are killed by it including a young boy, a scientist finds a way to kill it and succeeds at the end.

This films stars American actor Dean Jagger and is joined by several familiar British stars: Leo McKern (The Day The Earth Caught Fire), Anthony Newly (Killers of Kilimanjaro), a young Frazer Hines (Dr Who, Emmerdale) and Hammer regular Michael Ripper (Curse of the Werewolf, The Mummy).

The movie has a very creepy score and location photography, a lot of which was shot at night.

This movie is a must if you are a fan of 1950's science fiction and Hammer.

Rating: 4 stars out of 5.


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