The 1950’s was arguably the golden age of science fiction. Movies, books, comics, and cover art seemed to be part of the era’s zeitgiest. James H. Nicholson and Samuel Z. Arkoff opened up American International Pictures which became one of the leaders in science fiction cinema. They were also the folks that discovered such talents as Roger Corman. In 1955, the film, The Phantom From 10,000 Leagues, was the second feature on a dual bill with Roger Corman’s Day the World Ended.
When the bodies of fishermen and beachgoers begin to wash ashore, a motley group of folks take notice. A college professor, a scientist, a government agent, and a foreign spy all coalesce upon this small tourist village. What they discover is uranium ore has breached the ocean’s floor causing havoc to the townsfolk. Yet, as everyone digs further into the matter, they soon discover that a more ominous presence may be living within the depths of the ocean.
With the threat of the Cold War, nuclear annihilation, and dangers from foreign shores, many science fiction films of the era played into these fears. The Phantom From 10,000 Leagues was no exception. One of the lesser known films of the era, yet having a small but strong cult following, the film has recently been rediscovered with its blu-ray release. Part 4 of 5 episodes of our Killer Fish Fest month, Dark Discussions takes a look at this film from our grandparents’ generation.