The Incredible Petrified World
|The Incredible Petrified World|
Promotional film poster
|Directed by||Jerry Warren|
|Produced by||Jerry Warren|
|Written by||John W. Steiner|
|Music by||Josef Zimanich|
|Edited by||Harold V. McKenzie
|Distributed by||Governor Films Inc.|
The Incredible Petrified World is a 1960 science fiction film directed by Jerry Warren and starring John Carradine. It was actually completed by Warren in 1957, but remained unreleased until it was distributed in 1960 on a double bill with Warren's Teenage Zombies.
Professor Millard Wyman (John Carradine) sends a crew of two men, Paul Whitmore (Allen Windsor) and Craig Randall (Robert Clarke), and two women Lauri Talbott (Sheila Noonan) and Dale Marshall (Phyllis Coates), down to ocean depths never before explored. But, there’s a technical problem during the launch and the mission is believed lost.
Miraculously the crew survives the mishap. However, they fear that their inevitable deaths are only postponed because they broke free of the cable connecting them to the surface and lost communication. Someone spots light out the bell’s window. They don’t understand it but they believe they moved up from where the mishap began. They determine that the pressure should be tolerable at a depth where light can be seen. They don their scuba gear and leave the bell. Instead of reaching the surface they surface in a cave. The crew explores the cave and finds a giant lizard. They also find a skeleton, then a living man tells the crew that he suffered a shipwreck fourteen years prior and found these caves after sinking into the ocean. He claims there is no way out and a volcano provides air to the caves.
Meanwhile, men working on the mission from the surface with sonar discover some unusual shapes moving near the doomed diving bell. Their bosses think it’s probably nothing. Prof. Wyman’s younger brother builds a bell but the launch is canceled. Prof. Wyman shows the man in charge of his brother’s mission modifications that he’s developed from the mistakes he made with the first bell. His pitch works and the second bell is launched. However, with the man in the cave becoming more suspicious and the volcano grows more unstable the second mission may not find them in time.
Production and release
In an interview, star Robert Clarke said that the film's cinematographer is actually a well-known Hollywood cameraman who used the pseudonym "Victor Fisher" so he would not get in trouble with the union for taking a job on this non-union picture. The cavern sequences were shot at Colossal Cave in Tucson, Arizona. The film was completed around March 1957. It remained unreleased for 3 years until it was put on the bottom of a double feature with another of Jerry Warren's films, Teenage Zombies, in 1960. Phyllis Coates was never paid by Jerry Warren for her performance in the film.
- The Incredible Petrified World TCM notes
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