Astronaut Sam Bell has a quintessentially personal encounter toward the end of his three-year stint on the Moon, where he, working alongside his computer, GERTY, sends back to Earth parcels of a resource that has helped diminish our planet's power problems.
When Adams and his crew are sent to investigate the silence from a planet inhabited by scientists, he finds all but two have died. Dr. Morbius and his daughter Altaira have somehow survived a hideous monster which roams the planet. Unknown to Adams, Morbius has made a discovery, and has no intention of sharing it (or his daughter!) with anyone. Written by
Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry has been quoted as saying that this film was a major inspiration for that series. Perhaps not accidentally, Warren Stevens, who plays "Doc" here, would later be a guest star in 1968's Star Trek: By Any Other Name, where the true shape of the alien Kelvans, like the Krell in this movie, was implied to be extremely non-humanoid but never shown. 1701, which is the serial number of the Starship Enterprise, allegedly comes from the clock mark 17:01 when the C57D enters orbit around Altair IV. See more »
Just before they land, Adams impatiently flips off the radio as Morbius is in the middle of the word "recommend". Morbius should have been cut off immediately and in mid-word. But we hear him say the full word "recommend" even after Adams has shut the radio off. See more »
The total potential here must be nothing less than astronomical.
Dr. Edward Morbius:
Nothing less. The number 10 raised almost literally to the power of infinity.
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While not re-treading the comments or plot summaries of other IMDB users, I thought I'd say that this particular film does get better as it gets older. While ground-breaking on it's release in 1956, the visual "look" of this film has grown over the 46 years since it first arrived.
True to the pulp sci-fi of its day, the art direction has mellowed into an archetype that has not been bettered to this date. MGM put a surprising amount of money into the production values (similar to, but better than Universal's "This Island Earth"). This is a living "cover art". The indelible images of the saucer passing through space, landing on Altair-4, Robby, and the disintegrating tiger linger long in collective memory.
This must be seen on the big screen if possible, and in the original Cinemascope format. I've been lucky enough to see it (it was re-released in the 70's on a double bill with George Pal's "The Time Machine"), and the power it carries in scenes such as the Krell machines and the attack of the Id Monster are truly impressive. Watching it on a television just doesn't come close, although the "letterboxed" version is better than nothing. I am a poster collector, and even the advertising material for this film is exceptional. I see the one-sheet for it every day in my living room, and have never grown tired of it. "AMAZING!" is what is says, and for once they got it right. A true classic of it's type.
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