THE SEA SERPENT (1985) Reviews of monster movie

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The Sea Serpent is a 1985 Spanish science fiction horror film about a prehistoric sea monster reanimated by the detonation of an atomic bomb. Also known as Hydra: Monster of the Deep.

Written and directed by Amando de Ossorio (Demon Witch Child; Night of the Sorcerers; The Loreley’s Grasp; Tombs of the Blind Dead and sequels; Fangs of the Living Dead) as Gregory Greens. Produced by José Frade.

The movie stars Timothy Bottoms, Taryn Power, Jared Martin and Ray Milland.

A nuclear detonation in the Atlantic reanimates a prehistoric sea monster. The creature terrorizes the Spanish coastline, attacking swimmers, boats and lighthouses indiscriminately.

Pedro, a sea captain (Timothy Bottoms) whose ship was sunk by the monster and, Margaret (Taryn Power), an attractive American tourist whose best friend was killed by the beast, team up to stop the monster, along with the help of a respected but grouchy old oceanographer (Ray Milland)…


“The special effects are the sole saving grace of the film. Don’t get me wrong, they too are awful, but they’re also kind of cute and oddly entertaining to watch, anyway. The sea monster, designed to look like a giant snake, is laughably visualized with giant ping pong ball eyes and what appears to be wings.” The Bloody Pit of Horror

” …while this movie is absolutely awful from its first frame to the bitter last frame, horrible acting, horrible voice dubbing, terrible pacing, and special effects that seemed closer to 1924 than 1984, but the monster was so devastatingly awesome that its existence alone almost makes this must-see TV.” Film Critics United

“Ray Milland as the angry old scientist is by and far the high point of this film, even beyond the stop-motion serpent puppet. He’s just so outlandishly angry about everything, even when he agrees with whatever’s going on. When the necessary romance reaches its climax, Milland busts between the two lovers, shouting profanities and dismissing love as the most worthless of all emotions. It was magical.” Films in Boxes

“In addition to repeating the same shot of the watery beastie rising out of the water with its ear-shattering shriek over and over again, he [Amando de Ossorio] lifts John Williams’ Jaws theme nearly note for note as well as the lighthouse scene from Beast from 20,000 Fathoms. Ray Milland, in his final big-screen role, seems to be enjoying himself…” Horror 101 with Dr AC

“I can’t top the remark made by a Youtube viewer of Serpent: that it was the best sock-puppet monster-movie made in the last few decades. But even with that distinction, it’s pretty barren of the sort of inspired absurdities that make a movie “so bad it’s good.” This story of a sub-Godzilla awakened by the usual nuclear testing is nothing but dull.” Naturalistic! Uncanny! Marvelous!

“The miniatures are very primitive and cheesy, at least the boats and the monster itself. The bridge looks quite ok, and also the lighthouse. The action is – except a few boring talky scenes of nonsense – more than I expected. Lots of monster-attacks where they’re using a full-size monster-head to eat people with.” Ninja Dixon

“If you like movies of the, “so bad it’s good,” variety, then you’ll probably love The Sea Serpent.  Seeing the ultra-fake looking sea serpent (and hearing the bizarre shrieking noises it makes), you’d think for sure that this is a self-aware spoof of monster films.  However, the actors in the movie seem to be quite serious which makes me think the terribleness is all accidental.” Rare Horror

“Now, I completely understand that in the wake of Jaws, there were a number of imitators but this flick has to win a prize for the most blatant ripoff of John Williams’ score. There are also shades of Godzilla with the monster making the same shriek that Godzilla makes as well as being borne from radiation in the ocean. The monster itself looks nothing like Godzilla but instead looks like a lost Ed Wood prop…” The Video Graveyard

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Main cast and characters:
Timothy Bottoms … Pedro Fontán
Taryn Power … Margaret
Jared Martin … Linares
Ray Milland … Professor Timothy Wallace
Gerard Tichy …
Carole James … Jill
Jack Taylor … Killer
León Klimovsky … Doctor Moore
Miguel de Grandy
Paul Benson
Charly Bravo
Víctor Israel … Porto
Barta Barri … Defender

Filming locations:
Sesimbra, Setúbal, Portugal

Original title:
Serpiente de Mar “The Sea Serpent”

The movie was released in Madrid, Spain on 26th April 1985.

More sea monsters
More Spanish movies

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