An alien space craft lands in the desert. The alien takes over the minds of some of the local humans and animals and is able to see through them. The animals attack and the terror begins. Written by
According to American International Pictures head Samuel Z. Arkoff, Roger Corman's contract called for four films at a budget of $100,000 each. By the time it came to "The Beast with a Million Eyes," the fourth film in the series, there was only $29,000 to $30,000 left, so Arkoff signed off on shooting the picture non-union in Palm Springs. See more »
When Sandy is leaving the kitchen to go swimming, as in some other similar shots, the door which supposedly leads outside obviously opens to a studio interior. This is also the reason why the kitchen windows are always curtained, and the outside view is never visible through them. See more »
Can't Help But See Because the Night Has a Million Eyes
Now it is very easy to lambaste this film for so many things. The cheesy special effects(where reviewers have compared the alien spacecraft to a percolator or tea kettle)or how about the cloth birds thrown at Paul Birch's car. That is the extent of the special effect except of course for the "horrifying" finale where the mastermind is revealed. Somebody pinch me so I do not relive that horror another moment. Okay, let's get real. What about the animals - real, live animals - which are supposedly mad and dangerous. A dog wagging it tail in attack mode? The dog looked liked it was being trained in real time and was about as dangerous as the chances of any actors in this film winning an Oscar. A mad bull suppose to be a milking cow moving on in an attack like molasses. Paper and cloth birds and an innocuous crow sitting in a date palm. Scary stuff. The story basically has some alien mastermind introduced at the film's beginning saying he will take over earth for his dying alien race by first mastering the simple minds of the animals and plants and then moving on to the human beings. Whilst its execution is anything but pretty, The Beast with a Million Eyes is really one of the first nature goes awry films - films like The Day of the Animals, Prophecy, Grizzly, and so on owe the film a little bit - okay, a micro-little bit, but it is one of the first of its kind. What does it have going for it? Honestly not much. Paul Birch is mediocre but at least can act. I wish I could say that about the other thespians but would choke if I tried. Lorna Thayer plays his wife with reckless over-acting. She was an actress of some note and today is best known as the waitress from Five Easy Pieces with the notorious chicken salad sandwich scene. Dona Cole plays the daughter Sandy and she is just awful - no wonder her film career was quite limited. Dick Sargent(the second Darren from Bewitched) and Leonard Traver as the hulking, mute, ax-wielding "Him" are barely serviceable. One minor surprise was seeing great silent film comedian Chester Conklin in a brief but satisfying role. He even gets to do a little shtick for us before his udderly ridiculous departure. I have one big question. Why would an alien mastermind trying to take over the world start on a barely populated date farm in the middle of nowhere. Nothing much here in terms of animal/plant/or human life? You can tell the movie was made on a shoe-string budget and has obvious, for many, irrevocable flaws. But despite all of these imperfections, I found the movie to have some heart and think we should all get together and give it some love. Paul Birch's character would be so happy with that.
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