Revenge of the Creature (also known as Return of the Creature and Return of the Creature from the Black Lagoon) is the first sequel to Creature from the Black Lagoon, being the only 3-D film released in 1955 and the only 3-D sequel to a 3-D film released during "the golden age of 3-D". Directed by Jack Arnold, the film stars John Agar and Lori Nelson. This was Clint Eastwood's film debut.
Revenge of the Creature premiered in Denver on March 23, 1955 and a 2-D sequel, The Creature Walks Among Us, followed it in 1956.
Having previously survived being riddled with bullets, the Gill-man is captured and sent to the Ocean Harbor Oceanarium in Florida, where he is studied by animal psychologist Professor Clete Ferguson (John Agar) and ichthyology student Helen Dobson (Lori Nelson).
Helen and Clete quickly begin to fall in love, much to the chagrin of Joe Hayes (John Bromfield), the Gill-man's keeper. The Gill-man takes an instant liking to Helen, which severely hampers Professor Ferguson's efforts to communicate with him. Ultimately, the Gill-man escapes from his tank, killing Joe in the process, and flees to the open ocean.
Unable to stop thinking about Helen, the Gill-man soon begins to stalk her and Ferguson, ultimately abducting her from a seaside restaurant where the two are at a party. Clete tries to give chase, but the Gill-man escapes to the water with his captive. Clete and police arrive just in time and when the creature surfaces, police shoot him to death as Clete saves Helen.
Using the working titles of Return of the Creature and Return of the Creature from the Black Lagoon, filming took place at the Marineland of Florida which played the part of the film's Ocean Harbor Oceanarium. The St. Johns River stood in for the Amazon in the film.
The Lobster House restaurant where the Creature kidnaps Lori Nelson was located in Jacksonville, Florida. It was destroyed by fire in 1962. The Diamondhead Restaurant (now the River City Brewing Co.) was built adjacent to the site where the old Lobster House once stood. Friendship Park was built on the vacant land near where the Lobster House stood.
Revenge of the Creature marks the screen debut of Clint Eastwood, who appears uncredited as a lab technician named Jennings early in the story. He is shown having a discussion with Professor Ferguson, accusing a test subject cat of eating a lab rat, only to find that he had in fact accidentally put the lab rat in his lab coat pocket.
Critically reviewed in The New York Times, Revenge of the Creature was dismissed as a fourth-rate sequel with the comment, "... away we go, as before." Other than some interesting sequences involving the setting, "What is probably the most unusual aquarium in the world makes a nice, picturesque background indeed ..." the review was dismissive of the production.
Although Revenge of the Creature has been broadcast on television in red-and-blue-glasses anaglyph form (e.g., in 1982 in the San Francisco Bay area), it was originally shown in theaters by the polarized light method and viewed through glasses with gray polarizing filters. A "flat" version without 3D was also released.
In 1997, Revenge of the Creature was mocked in an episode of the comedy series Mystery Science Theater 3000.
Universal released Revenge of the Creature on DVD in a boxed set along with Creature from the Black Lagoon and The Creature Walks Among Us, and added a bonus behind-the-scenes documentary on the famous trilogy.