Harryhausen and the Giant Octopus
Whilst out at sea Cmdr. Pete Mathews (Kenneth Tobey) and his crew have a close encounter with some sort of unidentified object at sea which when divers go down to look fail to come up with anything conclusive. But with the aid of a couple of scientists they return to sea and discover they are dealing with a giant radioactive octopus which has strayed from the normal feeding grounds and is making its way to San Francisco. With the threat to civilians the Navy tries to trap the monster from the deep but when it makes it into the Bay area they have to try and destroy it.
Look out there's a Ray Harryhausen giant Octopus on the loose and it is heading for the bay area, but never fear the Navy and the scientists are here to save the day in between some casual flirting with an attractive scientist. That is "It Came from Beneath the Sea" wrapped up in a single sentence and that makes it for me just another one of those 1950s creature features, the sort which I am sure young science fiction fans enjoyed as did a few young men who talked their dates in to seeing it and getting to get intimate when the giant octopus scared their dates. I would even imagine this typical tale of a mutant creature putting San Francisco in danger would still entertain those who have a nostalgic memory of it.
But how about those who see "It Came from Beneath the Sea"? Well as I said it is a typical 1950s creature feature and for me if this was the first one I had ever seen I would probably find it entertaining. But I have watched quite a few and sadly the story did little to really entice me as the whole movie seemed to work to the creature feature formula right down to that obligatory bit of romance tossed in there for the date movie crowd. There is of course the fact that "It Came from Beneath the Sea" features the work of Ray Harryhausen when it comes to the giant octopus and whilst entertaining it is not for me his best work.
What this all boils down to is that "It Came from Beneath the Sea" is for me just another 1950s creature feature and because of that it did little to stand out from the crowd. But like with many of these movies I am sure there is some nostalgic charm to it for those who remember watching it as a child.