It Came From Outer Space

1953, Movie, NR, 80 mins

Review

IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE
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One of the better science-fiction films to come out of the Cold War 50s, this one must be counted among the anti-McCarthy statements. Not just passively anti-conformist like the original INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, it actively supports the right of any being to be different. Unusually restrained and sober in tone for its time, IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE is a film noir variant on the sci-fi genre.

Carlson is John Putnam, an astronomer who lives alone out in the desert. The folks in town find him eccentric and distrust his intellectualism. One night he sees what he thinks is a meteor blaze across the sky and crash in the desert. As it turns out, the UFO is actually an alien spacecraft. The creatures, cloaked with invisibility, replace the locals with alien doubles, thereby making it difficult for Putnam to prove they exist. He tells the townspeople but no one wants to believe him. Once he makes contact with the aliens, he learns that their intentions are not really threatening but, by that time, the townspeople are finally starting to panic.

Inspired by a Ray Bradbury story, this film had the added bonus of being photographed in 3-D, and it was worth putting up with the annoying glasses to view Arnold's creepy deep-focus compositions. This was director Arnold's first science fiction work, a genre in which he was to make quite a mark, directing such films as THIS ISLAND EARTH, TARANTULA, and his classic, THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN. leave a comment

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