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It Came from Outer Space (1953)

Approved | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 25 May 1953 (USA)
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A spaceship from another world crashes in the Arizona desert, and only an amateur stargazer and a schoolteacher suspect alien influence when the local townsfolk begin to act strange.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
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Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Sheriff Matt Warren
Joe Sawyer ...
Frank Daylon
...
George
...
June
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Storyline

John Putnam is a writer and an amateur stargazer with a new home out in the beautiful Arizona desert, which he enjoys with Ellen Fields, his girlfriend and a local schoolteacher. John is not trusted by the people of the small town near where he lives, certainly not by Sheriff Matt Warren, who feels protective of Ellen, and perhaps something more. One night, John and Ellen see a meteor crash in the desert. John drags his friend, Pete, out of bed to take him over to the crash site in his helicopter. Once there, John climbs down into the crater. Unfortunately, he does so alone, as Pete and Ellen wait for him. John is the only one who sees the spaceship before a landslide covers it. And John is the only one who catches a glimpse of the hideous thing inside. At first John's story seems mad, until some of the townsfolk begin acting strange - as if they aren't really who they seem to be. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From Ray Bradbury's great science fiction story! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 May 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Atomic Monster  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$800,000 (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

According to a magazine article the "bubble" effect seen when the audience is seeing things from the alien's POV was achieved by actually blowing a specially formulated "tough" bubble around the camera lens. These shots were kept short since the bubbles only lasted a brief time. See more »

Goofs

Richard Carlson's house in the desert has a fireplace on the inside but no chimney on the outside. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
John Putnam: [off-screen] This is Sand Rock, Arizona, of a late evening in early spring. It's a nice town, knowing its past and sure of its future, as it makes ready for the night, and the predictable morning. The desert blankets the earth, cooling, resting for the fight with tomorrow's sun. And in my house near the town, we're also sure of the future. So very sure.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits are at the end rather than at the beginning. They include shots of the characters with the cast names, and the pictures would mean nothing if seen before the film. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

One of Arnold's best (even though it's not his favorite).
23 November 2001 | by (Fayetteville, GA) – See all my reviews

Jack Arnold directed this screen version of Ray Bradbury's short story, `The Meteor', about a crashed spaceship in the mid-western desert. The alien crew kidnaps several inhabitants of the local town and assumes their form. A writer of science articles (Richard Carlson) who lives on the outskirts of the town witnesses the crash, although he thinks it's just a meteorite. When he goes down into the smoking crater, he sees the open hatchway of the spaceship and an alien creature within it, but when the alien closes the big hatch it starts a landslide in the crater which covers the ship. Afterwards none of the local authorities will believe Carlson's story about a buried spaceship filled with alien invaders.

A moody and beautiful movie, with fine music by Henry Mancini. Many fans of Jack Arnold's sci-fi films consider this one his best (although personally I prefer `The Space Children' -- and so did Jack Arnold, according to his own statement).

Charles Drake (`Tobor the Great') is the skeptical sheriff. Russell Johnson plays both a human and an alien (a treat for genre' fans). The supporting cast includes Joe Sawyer and Kathleen Hughes. Special effects by David S. Horsely and the great Clifford Stine. Makeup by Bud Westmore, of the famous Westmore family who contributed much to all the `Star Trek' spin-offs.

Originally released in 3-D. A 3-D tape was available a few years ago, but the quality was not good . . . sad to say.


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