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Film / Indestructible Man

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Indestructible Man is a 1956 American crime horror science fiction film, an original screenplay by Vy Russell and Sue Dwiggins for producer-director Jack Pollexfen and starring Lon Chaney Jr., with Marian Carr, Casey Adams, Ross Elliott and Robert Shayne.

Convicted criminal Charles "Butcher" Benton goes to his death in the state prison, cursing the three men who double-crossed him following an armored-car hold-up: "Squeamy" Ellis, Joe Marcelli and Paul Lowe, his attorney and leader of the gang. He vows to return and kill them and dies without revealing the location of the stolen money. Detective Chasen is determined to keep working on the case until the stolen loot is recovered. Benton's body is taken to Professor Bradshaw and his assistant for experimentation, and they manage to restore him to life, making him practically indestructible in the process. He takes off after the three men, getting rid of everybody who stands in his way. He is impervious to police bullets. He kills Ellis and Marcelli, while Lowe seeks police protection. Benton takes to the sewers to recover the hidden loot and the police are powerless to stop him.

For the Mystery Science Theater 3000 episode, see here.

"300,000 Tropes of Terror!":

  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: The climax plays out in the L.A. sewer system.
  • The Butcher: The indestructible villain of the title is "Butcher" Benson.
  • Cane Fu: When attacked Joe Marcelli batters Benson with one of his crutches. It does him no good.
  • Can't Get in Trouble for Nuthin': Once he realizes Butcher Benton is coming for him, Paul Lowe does everything in his power to get arrested so he'll have police protection. However, the police see right through it and bend over backward to excuse everything he does, dropping all charges and turning him loose.
  • Engineered Public Confession: The police deliberately deny Lowe any form of police protection and turn him loose on the streets, in hopes that his fear of the Butcher will motivate him to confess to his own part in the original crime. It works.
  • Get into Jail Free: When the police deny him police protection, Paul Lowe punches the sergeant so he will be arrested and placed in a cell.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Dr. Bradshaw's experiment was intended to restart a corpse's heart by chemical stimulation and a massive jolt of electricity. It succeeds, but while Bradshaw believed the heart would be restarted for a few minutes, the process restores Benson fully to life and renders him Nigh-Invulnerable. Benson then murders Bradshaw and his assistant.
  • Revenge: Benton's lawyer and partners had thrown him under the bus in hopes of getting his loot.
  • Shock and Awe: After emerging from the sewer in the climax, Benton climbs up onto a platform at an electrical substation, where he comes into contact with high-voltage power lines and is fried to a crisp. Not so indestructible now, are we?
  • The Speechless: Benson speaks in the first scene of the film, but the electrical process that returns him to life burns out his vocal cords, rendering him mute for the rest of the movie.
  • Thousand-Yard Stare: A witness to one of Benton's rampages stares wide-eyed into the distance as she recalls her harrowing tale.
  • Treasure Map: Before his execution, Benton had left a letter for his stripper girlfriend which included a map to his hiding spot for all his loot. Paul Lowe finds the map before she does, and swaps it out for a couple hundred dollars.

Alternative Title(s): The Indestructible Man