INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN
Grant Williams, Randy Stuart, April Kent, Paul Langton, Raymond
Bailey, William Schallert
1957, 81 Minutes, Directed by: Jack Arnold
Grant Williams and Randy Stuart are Scott and Louise Carey, vacationing couple
lounging on a boat. A mist envelops Williams, and he is left with what looks
like glitter on his chest. No other ill effects are noticeable. One day, six
months later, his dry cleaner keeps screwing up, either giving him clothes that
are too big, or doing something to stretch his old clothes. He begins to notice
he may be losing height as well as weight. He goes to see a doctor, played by
William Schallert, and discovers he is not imagining his condition. The doc
sends him home, but Williams comes back with even more, er, shrinkage. The
doctors decide the radioactive mist, along with some insecticide Williams
accidentally inhaled, is causing an almost anti-cancerous condition in his body.
Instead of renegade cells growing, his body is shrinking at a uniform rate.
Williams is injected with a serum that seems to stop his loss, but does not help
him grow. His marriage to Stuart begins to suffer as he takes out all of his
frustrations on her. Down to thirty-six inches, he runs away from home, getting
stares the entire distance. He meets a sideshow midget Clarice, played by April
Kent, and begins to feel normal again, trying to adapt to his new world.
Eventually, he discovers the serum did not work, and he begins to shrink again.
Williams is now angry and bitter, living in a child's doll house and ordering
Stuart around. The film's most famous scene happens when a pet cat is
accidentally let into the house and attacks Williams. He ends up in the
basement, and his wife and brother think he is dead. They begin to pack up the
house and leave, while Williams spends the last half of the film down in the
cellar, hunting for food and battling a giant spider.
black & white sci-fi tale in which a man is shrunk to the
size of a toy - and keeps on shrinking! Being unable to reverse
the process, he keeps on being threatened by everyday objects
that we take for granted - first a cat, later on a spider and so
special effects and trick photography are cleverly done (for its
time). Also, the story is intelligently handled with an
existentialist (this sort of thing changes the way a man thinks
about life in general!) screenplay by Richard Matheson, based on
his own novel The Shrinking Man.
this to the somewhat lowbrow treatment the same theme
got from Walt Disney in Honey I Shrunk the Kids and many
Top 100 Sci-Fi
of all time