From Hell It Came

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From Hell It Came
Theatrical release poster
Directed byDan Milner
Produced byJack Milner
Screenplay byRichard Bernstein
Story byRichard Bernstein
Jack Milner
StarringTod Andrews
Tina Carver
Linda Watkins
John McNamara
Gregg Palmer
Robert Swan
Baynes Barron
Suzanne Ridgeway
Chester Hayes
Music byDarrell Calker
CinematographyBrydon Baker
Edited byJack Milner
Milner Brothers Productions
Distributed byAllied Artists Pictures
Release date
  • August 25, 1957 (1957-08-25) (United States)
Running time
71 minutes
CountryUnited States

From Hell It Came is a 1957 American science fiction horror film directed by Dan Milner and written by Richard Bernstein, from a story by Bernstein and Jack Milner.[1] It was released by Allied Artists on a double bill with The Disembodied.


A South Seas island prince is wrongly convicted of murder and executed by having a knife driven into his heart, the result of a plot by a witch doctor (the true murderer) who resented the prince's friendly relations with American scientists stationed on a field laboratory on the island. The prince is buried in a hollow tree trunk and forgotten about until nuclear radiation reanimates him in the form of the "Tabonga", a scowling tree stump. The monster escapes from the laboratory and kills several people, including the witch doctor, whom the Tabonga pushes down a hill to be impaled on his own crown of shark teeth. The creature cannot be stopped, burned, or trapped. Only when a crack rifle shot from one of the scientists drives the knife (which still protrudes from the creature's chest) all the way through its heart does it finally die and sink into the swamp.



The iconic Tabonga monster was designed by Paul Blaisdell[2] (also known for his work on The She-Creature, Invasion of the Saucer Men, Not of This Earth and It! The Terror from Beyond Space) but was manufactured by Don Post Studios. This was the second and last feature film to be produced by the Milner brothers.[3]


It was released by Allied Artists in 1957 on a double bill with The Disembodied.[4]

Through its Warner Archive Collection, Warner Home Video released the film on DVD on November 11, 2009,[5] and on Blu-ray on April 25, 2017.


According to Tim Healey, it deserves an honored place in the canon of the world's worst movies.[6] Author and film critic Leonard Maltin awarded the film 1½ of 4 stars, writing, "As walking-tree movies go, this is at the top of the list".[7] Bruce Eder from AllMovie panned the film, writing, "The sheer badness of Dan Milner's From Hell It Came is mitigated ever so slightly by the efforts of Paul Blaisdell, who created the vengeful tree-creature called the Tabonga... All of which leaves ridiculously campy fun as the sole reason to watch this very mildly entertaining misfire, which is funnier in the telling than the watching".[8] On his website Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings, Dave Sindelar criticized the monster design and called the film "slow, talky, confusing, and badly acted".[9] TV Guide awarded the film 2 out of 5 stars, calling it "silly" and "really goofy".[10]


  1. ^ Not So Scary... Top Ten Worst Movie Monsters!
  2. ^ Paul Blaisdell, Monster Maker: A Biography of the B Movie Makeup and Special Effects Artist by Randy Palmer
  3. ^ The Strange Creature of Topanga Canyon: Paul Blaisdell, His Life and Times
  4. ^ It Came from 1957: A Critical Guide to the Year's Science Fiction, Fantasy By Rob Craig
  5. ^ Stomp Tokyo review of film
  6. ^ Tim Healey (1986) The World's Worst Movies. London, Octopus Books: 8-9
  7. ^ Leonard Maltin (ed.), Leonard Maltin's 2001 Movie & Video Guide, Plume, ISBN 0-452-28187-3. The review was later moved from Maltin's annual guidebook that included recent movies into Leonard Maltin's Classic Movie Guide: From the Silent Era through 1965, 2nd edition (2010), Plume, ISBN 978-0-452-29577-3.
  8. ^ Eder, Bruce. "From Hell It Came (1957) - Dan Milner". Bruce Eder. Retrieved 10 March 2016.
  9. ^ Sindelar, Dave. "From Hell It Came (1957)". Fantastic Movie Dave Sindelar. Retrieved 6 November 2018.
  10. ^ "From Hell It Came - Movie Reviews and Movie Ratings". TV TV Guide. Retrieved 6 November 2018.

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