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Reviews & Ratings for
Forbidden Planet More at IMDbPro »

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Spaceships were much cooler in the 50's!

Author: brianshoebridge1 from Australia
29 September 2013

Yep, they were. Red leather, lovely 30's inspired decor, a minimum of screens & flashing lights. In fact I consider the minimalist layout to be much MORE hi-tech than the cluttered ships we usually see. Much of the dreary stuff is hidden from view. It makes the film seem quite modern (sort of).

The Robinsons from "Lost in Space" shopped at the same Galactic Supa- Centre - they bought a scaled down ship, less expensive gear & a cheaper version of Robby but you can easily see the lineage.

The special effects must have seemed pretty excellent back in the day because they still look good. Nice laser shots, the monster is well done, all in all they did a really good job.

Sure, there are some holes in the plot but it isn't Shakespeare, it's a really good example of Science Fiction. Much, much better than I expected.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Awesome movie

Author: cmv32261 from United States
26 July 2013

Movie was released 5 yrs. before I was born, but still withstands the test of time. Robby The Robot and of course then still very enticing Ann Francis stole the show, still remember the sound of that motion sensor. How powerful was that Krill machine? I knew it could create images, but could it materialize solid objects as well, oh well, whatever, I remember Earl Holliman's character having Robby analyze that whiskey, and then Robby mass producing it for him. As for IMDb's Ann Francis biography describing her figure as voluptuous then women for years have been using the word incorrectly, because those who use the term to describe their physique are Full Figure (i.e.) chunky. Anne was actually 1 of the few back in those days that had a somewhat athletic figure, there were plenty of buxom blonde haired actresses, but firm figures none I am aware of other than Anne. Almost all leading cast deceased Walter Pidgeon, Warren Stevens, which by the way when he played Rojan in Classic Trek episode By Any Other Name he was already 48 almost Shatner's and Nimoy's senior by 11 yrs., Jack Kelly, Leslie Nielsen, and Anne Francis all deceased. Shame Anne chose not to pursue a more active acting career, true I do not find moles or birthmarks appealing, but with a figure like that just maybe I could see past it. What is it with some actresses they they seem to be oblivious to flaws that if removed or reconstructed they would be absolutely stunning. Consider Barbara Steisand and her nose as in being too big only a fool would say he is attracted to her because of her big nose. When I think of her it brings to mind a scene from the movie Funny Girl the 1 with her wearing that plunging neckline dress, hubba, hubba. As for Earl Holliman simply referred to as the Cook, he played Lt. Bill Crowley in Police Woman he will be 85 09/'13, Richard Anderson who played Oscar Goldman in the Six Million Dollar Man will be 87 in 08/'13. Did they not set the Krill machine to self destruct at the end in essence destroying the whole planet, oh well they saved the hot babe and the somewhat valuable piece of technology. J.J. Abrams could learn something by reviewing these classic Sci-Fi movies his Star Trek plots would not seem so much like something written by Alfred E. Newman.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

The 50's prototype Sci-Fi film and... succulent Anne Francis

Author: Wuchak from Ohio/PA border
17 May 2013

Released in 1956, I didn't see "Forbidden Planet" until a full 40 years later. I've seen it three more times since then and here's what strikes me:

For one, although Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry is undeniably great, practically every primary aspect of Trek is present in "Forbidden Planet," which was released almost a decade before the first Star Trek pilot episode was produced (!). You name it: warp drive, Captain/First Officer/Doctor triumvirate, babe in ultra-sexy outfits, beam down/up (in a visual sense, at least), etc., it's all here in "Forbidden Planet."

The invisible id monster is truly horrifying when finally viewed. It looks like a serious rendition of the Tasmanian Devil.

***SPOILER ALERT*** Don't read this brief paragraph if you don't want to know the monster's true identity. The concept that the monster is, in reality, the personification of Dr. Morbius' lower subconscious nature (i.e. the id, "flesh" or carnal psyche) is a fascinating revelation. ***END SPOILER*** I wasn't at all expecting such mature commentary in a 50's sci-fi flick.

Furthermore, Dr. Morbius' elaboration on the former inhabitants of his planet, the Krell, is fascinating to this day and the archaic special effects hold up well.

One thing that really blows me away every time I catch this flick, of course, is Anne Francis, who plays Altaira (or Alta for short), in her ultra skimpy (and cute) outfits. It doesn't matter what profound matters are going on in the film, if she's present in a scene with one of her various outfits, my eyes are completely focused on HER -- in utter awe of her jaw-dropping beauty. If you're a red-blooded male and think I'm kidding, check out the flick and see for yourself.

I've heard some people complain about the scene where we are led to believe that Alta (Francis) is skinny-dipping, only to plainly observe that she's wearing a loose skin-colored bathing suit. Is this a cop-out on the film-maker's part because it was 1956? Not at all because the bathing suit is clearly visible once she steps out of the water. Despite her sheltered innocent nature, let's give Alta some credit -- she was obviously playing a little coquettish joke on the Captain, to shock him and stir up his mounting desire (it absolutely worked!).

Please remember that "Forbidden Planet" is from 1956 and so understandably has dated aspects, like the sound effects, small portions of goofy dialogue, etc. Regardless, it must be HAILED as the honored blueprint for numerous sci-fi films and TV series to come.


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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

probably second only to the 'original' 'thing from another world'

Author: gfourmil from United States
4 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

this was one of those $.50 cent deals of yore---and far more complex than most realize---and it was in color! not only are the effects extraordinary, vs. crap like 'earth vs. the flying saucers'---the real 'killer' is the 'universality of plot'---everything hinges on two principles---the ancient concept of a hidden incestuous-thinking father's desire for his daughter, and the idea of what would happen should a world's tech reach the point where all citizen's desires become manifest.

needless to say if everyone we wished dead gets dead, not many, if any left---and that became the fate of the 'forbidden' planet's populace---rather modern, actually. unfortunately the 'gear' of 'The Krell'---wasted by ignorance, remains, and 'Morpheus', the incestuous father, knows how to access such tech---and does so, to prevent losing his daughter to another. ancient plot, beautifully rendered.

and considering its age, it remains a stunning suspense, action, human-emotion classic---and visually very modern---don't pass this one up---it presages all modern sci-fi---and its pscychological content elevates it, beyond any genre---a timeless work---

and the soundtract! you will see/hear no pure 'synth' and perfectly syched Moog background---a 'not miss'---

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

An Uneasy Mix

Author: dougdoepke from Claremont, USA
17 March 2012

This big-budget MGM production is a long way from the Z-budget Corman epics of the time. No "crab monsters" or "wasp women" here. Instead we get a sophisticated Freud-in-space adventure apparently rooted somehow in Shakespeare, no less. Of course, the studio has a prestige reputation to protect so the production design is first-rate for that era. I recall being bowled over by the elaborate Technicolor sets, including the spectacular Ms. Francis still the best reason I can think of for exploring the outer reaches.

But then as eye-catching as the sets are, they also present a problem. Namely, landing on an alien planet means all the action has to be confined to these outer space settings, no matter how lavish. Combine that restriction with stodgy acting and uninspired direction, and you get too many people standing around talking too much of the time. At the same time, the script tries too hard to connect with audiences by inserting popular stereotypes, like the apron- wearing cook (Holliman) or the ten-minutes of drooling over Altaira (Francis) when one minute would do.

Still and all, I can sympathize with the challenge screenwriter (Hume) faces. After all, the movie's an expensive production in an exotic setting with heavily esoteric story elements that's supposed, nevertheless, to appeal to a broad audience. And that's a big challenge to even the slickest dramatist. (At least I know now what an 'id' is supposed to be, something I couldn't comprehend at the time as I expect others couldn't either.)

Anyway, the end result is an uneasy mixture of visual treats, heavy talk, a clever robot, and some hokey action. Frankly, though, it's a movie I could wait another 50-years to see.

(In passing—contrast this heavily promoted big-budget epic with that same year's unheralded little classic, Invasion of the Body Snatchers {1956}. There're some important movie-making pointers in the contrast, I think.)

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

The Snake In The Garden

Author: Bill Slocum ( from Greenwich, CT United States
3 January 2009

Movies set in a far-flung future do a better job showcasing the times they were made in than the times they attempt to depict. "Forbidden Planet" is no exception to that rule, yet it manages to remain a bracingly original, thoroughly entertaining film, an enduring classic in a cinematic genre that ages faster than unrefrigerated milk.

In a plot loosely lifted from Shakespeare's "The Tempest", a flying saucer flown from Earth in 2200 AD lands on the planet Altair 4, where Dr. Morbius (Walter Pidgeon) lives in isolation with his daughter Altaira (Anne Francis) and their helpful robot, Robby. The saucer's crew has orders to investigate the fate of a spaceship sent to the planet 20 years before, but Morbius, the only survivor from that earlier voyage, is curiously reluctant to offer his support.

Actually, there's not that much of "The Tempest" in "Forbidden Planet", which borrows more heavily from Freud and the Book of Genesis than Shakespeare. Altair is a seeming Garden of Eden of earthly perfection, yet something dark lurks beneath the surface that can be tied both to the Biblical concept of evil and the 20th century idea of the human subconscious. The 1950s were a golden age for science fiction more on the page than on screen, but "Forbidden Planet" holds up very well.

So does the captain of the flying saucer, third-billed Leslie Neilsen, probably the only guy in movies who had to share star billing with not one but two inanimate objects, Robby here and Otto in "Airplane!" Neilsen's later career transformation casts a subversive light on his more serious early roles, but Neilsen here is really good, both in his angry confrontations with Morbius and his comic attempts to disguise his jealous longing for Morbius's daughter.

The best performance, other than Robby's deadpan humor, is probably Warren Stevens as "Doc", a member of the saucer's crew who very subtly does a lot to point us in the direction the movie wants our minds to go in while his crewmates ogle the scrumptious Altaira. Doc is the repository for intelligence in "Forbidden Planet", more even than Morbius, as he seems to better understand the limits of the human condition.

There are some unintentionally funny moments in "Forbidden Planet". Is it stranger to see the saucer's crew members marvel at Morbius's garbage disposal unit or for the captain to call Robbie's food-making abilities "a housewife's dream"? Yet like Anne Francis's enduring hotitude, much about "Forbidden Planet" still seems fresh and new, like the first view of Altaira as the flying saucer enters its atmosphere, Morbius's guided tour of the catacombs beneath the planet, or the chilling moment when a crane shot of two guards turns out to be a POV shot of a large, unseen creature...

As a prognosis of the future, "Forbidden Planet" may miss the mark here and there (like in its prediction man would land on the moon some 130 years later than we actually did), but as an adventure story undergirded by deep thought, it's remarkably timeless.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

" I see it as a premonition of death, a warning to any and all "

Author: thinker1691 from USA
28 October 2008

Growing up as a child there has always been a realm of imagination concerning the future. Seeing it on TV, moreover in movies, the future became attractive and inviting. It was even more exciting when we could see the machines of the future people would have to work with. This movie, " Forbidden Planet " was such an inspiration to young minds it became a classic in it's own right. The story is taken from Shakespeare's 'the Tempest', but to youngsters, we saw little resemblance. Nevertheless, once you're on board the spacecraft heading towards Altair Six, you forget the play and concentrate on Robbie The Robot and the dangers of the planet. The crew is commanded by none other than Commander J. Adams (Leslie Stevens), Warren Stevens who plays 'Doc' Ostrow M.D.' Jack Kelly is the hormone driven Lt. Jerry Farman with Richard Anderson as Chief Quinn. The first time I saw the film I was visually impressed. In later years, I came to ask the question, if this is the future and space travel has been accepted, why do they still need "Dishwashers and Cooks" as played by Earl Holliman. Robby the Robot has always intrigued audiences, so much so he returns from time to time in other shows. Alright, so the film is a bit mushy, but the mysterious portions of invisible monsters make up for it. Excellent film and a true classic. ****

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:


Author: xargox from Italy
1 July 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A great, forever young and amazing film! As the Space Patrol lands on a planet searching for the survivors on their's crashing point, they're obliged to face a lot of problems: in the end all connected to each one. But it's very difficult to find this connection. Most of all I'm sure that without this celebrated SF movie, "Star Trek" could never have been taken off. Please look to the shape of the starship and the costumes. What about the Captain and the Doctor (anticipating Kirk and Bones)? Definitely I consider "Forbidden Planet" the true prequel to all that wonderful TV series. The message is very important and well developed, thanks to Disney and the crew. Great sixtie's colours. Everybody's love to beautiful Altaira. Where's Robby now? Ciao to all the Trekkers Guido Gossi

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

The total potential here must be nothing less than astronomical.

Author: lastliberal from United States
3 February 2008

This is a special film due to the Special Effects by A. Arnold Gillespie, Irving G. Ries, and Wesley C. Miller. For 1956, they were awesome!

But there was also some good acting in this film. For once, I got to see Leslie Nielsen before he made those ridiculous movies like The Naked Gun 2½.

Walter Pidgeon (Oscar nominations for Madame Curie and Mrs. Miniver) was really good as Dr. Morbius.

I enjoyed Ann Francis. I have missed her since "Honey West." And, of course, Robby the Robot stole the show.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Brave New World - with a twist

Author: Christian Gilbert from Thailand
2 August 2007

Based loosely on Shakespeare's The Tempest, this has rightly become something of a cult classic sci-fi movie. The score (electronic music) and special effects are both way ahead of their time and suspension of disbelief is readily achieved from a cast that includes Walter Pidgeon as the scientist who discovers the remains of a lost advanced civilisation on a faraway planet. He also discovers a terrifying secret that threatens anyone who lands on the planet. If you keep in mind that this film is over 50 years old it's a remarkable achievement and a most enjoyable 90 minutes. Aldous Huxley used a quote from the play to title what was to become perhaps his most famous novel but this film, too, is an apt warning of the pitfalls of uncontrolled scientific advance. Perhaps its warning is as apt today as it was in 1956.

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