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The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 57,275 users  
Reviews: 374 user | 156 critic

An alien lands and tells the people of Earth that they must live peacefully or be destroyed as a danger to other planets.

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Title: The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

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Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Billy Gray ...
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Lock Martin ...
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Storyline

An alien (Klaatu) with his mighty robot (Gort) land their spacecraft on Cold War-era Earth just after the end of World War II. They bring an important message to the planet that Klaatu wishes to tell to representatives of all nations. However, communication turns out to be difficult, so, after learning something about the natives, Klaatu decides on an alternative approach. Written by Bruce Janson <bruce@cs.su.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

alien | robot | tank | escape | washington d.c. | See more »

Taglines:

A robot and a man . . . hold the world spellbound with new and startling powers from another planet! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

28 September 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El día que paralizaron la Tierra  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the first big budget science fiction feature film to be released by a major American studio since Just Imagine (1930). See more »

Goofs

Three muzzle flashes, one report! In the close-up of the quick-triggered soldier atop the tank turret, we see and hear him fire his pistol, but for the sharp-eyed, the wide-shot of the tank crew that follows, reveals the visible but silent muzzle flash of both soldiers' side arms. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
American Radar Operator: Holy Mackerel! Call headquarters. Get the lieutenant.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Elmer Davis, H.V. Kaltenborn, and Drew Pearson identify themselves when they appear on screen. Radio personality Gabriel Heatter is identified by an announcer. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Interesting In Itself & As A Reflection of Its Era
15 September 2004 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

Interesting both in itself and as a reflection of its era, "The Day the Earth Stood Still" may seem unspectacular now to those who are used to the extravagant science fiction pictures of the present time, but it deserves its place as a cinema classic. The story is worthwhile in itself, and as soon as you set aside any preconceptions about what science fiction should involve, it also builds up some pretty good drama and suspense. Its perspective is also interesting to see as a reflection of the concerns of its era, which have such obvious similarities with those of the present.

The story itself sometimes moves rather slowly, and the focus is really more on the reactions to Klaatu's arrival than on the action itself. As Klaatu, Michael Rennie stays pretty low-key, as does the rest of the cast much of the time. Although there are times when the movie might lack some energy as a result, in general it probably works better that way than it would have if there were too much forced emphasis on the urgency of Klaatu's mission, which is more than able to speak for itself. The ideas behind the story are fairly simple, but they are, of course, just as significant now (or in practically any other era) as they were in the 1950's.


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