The Giant Claw (1957)

In this movie

The Giant Claw (a.k.a. The Mark of the Claw) is a 1957 American black-and-white science fiction giant monster film from Columbia Pictures, produced by Sam Katzman, directed by Fred F. Sears, that stars Jeff Morrow and Mara Corday. Both Sears and Katzman were well known as low-budget B film genre filmmakers. The film was released on a double bill with The Night the World Exploded.

Plot-The Giant Claw:

Mitch MacAfee (Morrow), a civil aeronautical engineer, while engaged in a radar test flight near the North Pole, spots an unidentified flying object. Three jet fighter aircraft are scrambled to pursue and identify the object but one aircraft goes missing. Officials are initially angry at MacAfee over the loss of a pilot and jet over what they believe to be a hoax.

When MacAfee and mathematician Sally Caldwell (Corday) fly back to New York, their aircraft also comes under attack by a UFO. With their pilot dead, they crash-land in the Adirondacks, where Pierre Broussard (Lou Merrill), a French-Canadian farmer, comes to their rescue. MacAfee’s report is met with bewilderment and skepticism, but the military authorities are forced to take his story seriously after several more aircraft disappear. They discover that a gigantic bird “as big as a battleship”, purported to come from an antimatter galaxy, is responsible for all the incidents. MacAfee, Caldwell, Dr. Karol Noymann (Edgar Barrier), Gen. Considine (Morris Ankrum), and Gen. Van Buskirk (Robert Shayne) work feverishly to develop a way to defeat the seemingly invincible creature.

The climactic showdown takes place in Manhattan, when the gigantic bird attacks both the Empire State Building and United Nations buildings. It is defeated by a special type of isotope, deployed from the tail gun position of a B-25 bomber aircraft, which successfully collapses the creature’s antimatter shield and allows missiles to hit and kill the monster. The giant bird plummets into the Atlantic Ocean outside New York, and the last sight of it is a claw sinking beneath the ocean.

Cast:

Jeff Morrow as Mitch MacAfee
Mara Corday as Sally Caldwell
Morris Ankrum as Lieutenant General Edward Considine
Lou Merrill as Pierre Broussard
Edgar Barrier as Dr. Karol Noymann
Robert Shayne as General Van Buskirk
Frank Griffin as Pete, the missing pilot (credited as Ruell Shayne)
Clark Howat as Maj. Bergen
Morgan Jones as Lieutenant, Radar Officer

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Comment (2)

  1. Awesome classic movie, remember watching it as a kid and was thrilled with it. Stop motion filming with real props is something CG just can’t mimic nowadays.

  2. A GREAT! classic movie to watch. Imagine how much fun it must have been to work with vintage props and creature creations such as The Giant Claw!

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