Brain Creatures From Outer Space

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Throughout science fiction cinematic history, alien invaders have always been portrayed as vastly superior in intellect and development. Though we almost always thwart them in their attempts to take over the world, their initial attacks are usually spectacular and well thought out. Oftentimes the aliens were portrayed as having larger than usual craniums to represent having a larger brain. But what about the aliens whose heads were actually brain-like in appearance, or were actually a brain?

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FILM BOOK OF FEAR: The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951)

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1951 featured quite a few entries in the alien invasion genre, two in particular that are two of the all-time best science fiction films ever released! The first one is THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD (see my coverage HERE) and the second is THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, directed by Robert Wise and starring Michael Rennie and Patricia Neal.

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FILM BOOK OF FEAR: Earth Vs. The Flying Saucers (1956)

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In this entry of my Film Book of Fear series I am covering a classic from 1956 called EARTH VS. THE FLYING SAUCERS! This is an interesting film in that it has a typical 50’s fun feel to it made all the better by the amazing special effects by animation master Ray Harryhausen! This is actually the first time Harryhausen animated something other than a living creature showing how creative and versatile he was.

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FILM BOOK OF FEAR: Invaders From Mars (1953)

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The 50’s will go down in history as the greatest decade of all time for science fiction films. During this 10 year period we were introduced to Godzilla, Rodan, giant insects and arachnids and of course every type of alien being bent on invading Earth imaginable. It truly was a great time to be a fan of not only movies, but of science fiction. Some of these films were great; some not so great. The one thing they all had in common though was great imaginations at a time where Hollywood was chock full of original ideas.

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FILM BOOK OF FEAR: Invasion Of The Saucer-Men (1957)

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Digging through the dusty basement today I came across a box of old VHS tapes that I actually forgot I had. While going through it, remembering what it was like to collect and watch these films on videocassette, I came across one of my favorite movies of the 50’s, Invasion of the Saucer-Men, from 1957. This copy, which came out in 1993, is unfortunately the only legal release of this classic film (in fact, most DVD bootlegs of this fun film are made from copying the official VHS release). Of all of the aliens that came out in the 50’s science fiction films, it is the saucer-men that are my favorite, created by legendary special effects artist Paul Blaisdell.

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FILM BOOK OF FEAR: The Thing From Another World! (1951)

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If you grew up in the 1950’s then you were a first-hand witness to probably the greatest decade of monster movies ever produced. It was during this ten-year period that so many classics were made. This is the decade that introduced us to Godzilla (1954), Rodan (1956), The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953), the reinvention of the classic Universal Monster movies, this time in color, by Hammer Studios and of course countless alien invasion films, many of which to this day are some of the best ever made. The subject of this review is one that has stood the test of time (67 years and counting at the time I am writing this) and remains one of the greatest science fiction movies ever made.

 

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