5.6/10
399
27 user 10 critic

The Twonky (1953)

Tweedy college professor discovers his new TV set is animate, apparently possessed by something from the future, and militantly intent on regulating his daily life.

Director:

Writers:

(short story), (written for the screen by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Kerry West
William H. Lynn ...
Coach Trout (as Billy Lynn)
...
Lady Bill Collector
Edwin Max ...
Ed, TV Repairman (as Ed Max)
...
Carolyn West
Evelyn Beresford ...
Old Lady Motorist
Bob Jellison ...
TV Shop Owner
Norman Field ...
Doctor
Stephen Roberts ...
Head Treasury Agent
...
Susie - Girl with football team
...
Student
Bennie Washington ...
Maybelle
Lenore Kingston ...
Offended Phone Operator #2
Alice Backes ...
Offended Phone Operator #1
Charles Phillips
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Storyline

The last thing College Lit Professor Cary West wants, while is wife is out of town, is a TV set to keep him company; but that's just what wife Carolyn has bought for him. He is relieved when the serviceman returns to collect the $100 deposit Carolyn forgot to give him; good, he doesn't have the money so the man can take the TV back! Only, a $5 bill he accidently dropped on the floor near the TV has suddenly developed 19 siblings, and the serviceman leaves, cash in hand. West soon realizes he has a major problem: the TV is alive. It lights his pipe, washes his dishes, vacuums his rugs. It also chooses what he can read, write, and marches around to military music; and It also zaps anyone who tries to harm Cary in any way, such as treasury agents investigating the duplicate $5 bills, the police who investigate a call placed by the TV set to the phone company requesting a 'female companion' be sent over for Cary's comfort, and a female bill collector who decides to move in til Cary pays ... Written by Rich Wannen <RichWannen@worldnet.att.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Out of Your Own Tomorrow... Out of Time and Space a Fearsome Power!

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 June 1953 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TCM Print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shot in November and December of 1951, not released until June 1953 and then it only played in three theaters.Many audience members left the theater before the film was over. See more »

Quotes

Coach Trout: A twonky is something that you don't know what it is.
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Connections

Featured in Svengoolie: The Twonky (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not all that well done, but surreal and campy enough to entertain psychotronic fans
21 February 2007 | by (Worcester, MA) – See all my reviews

This is an odd film. Its not particularly well made, but for some reason I rather enjoyed its quirky charms. The ironic part for me at least is while its anti-television it looks and feels like an early television drama. The acting is overwrought, the characters and situations all feel like a bizarrio sitcom, and there's not much plot, certainly not enough for a feature film. Also, the print I was watching was so completely washed-out it resembled a vintage kinescope. The direction by Arch Obler was awkward like many early television directors who were making the transition from radio.

Reading the description above, you can tell this will hold a certain fascination for some viewers. In addition to being interesting, its rather entertaining if only on a camp level. The performances are over-the-top and the theme of the film dates it quite badly. I wouldn't be surprised if John Waters is a fan of this title, and certainly William Castle fans will find much to enjoy. Hans Conreid gives pretty much the same performance that he did in "5000 Fingers of Dr. T", but hes always fun to watch. "The Twonky" isn't a great film, but is surreal and campy enough to entertain psychotronic fans. (5/10)


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