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Forbidden Planet
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Forbidden Planet More at IMDbPro »

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Sci-fi movie icon

Author: SnoopyStyle
4 August 2014

United Planet cruiser C57D is traveling to the planetary system of Altair. Commander Adams (Leslie Nielsen) and his crew find only two survivors on Altair-4 where a spaceship disappeared 20 years ago; Dr. Edward Morbius (Walter Pidgeon) and his daughter Altaira (Anne Francis). The crew is met by Robby the Robot. There was an advanced race called Krell that mysteriously died out 2000 centuries before, leaving behind a device called plastic educator in a library. There is also a mysterious invisible monster on the loose.

This story has elements of Shakespeare's The Tempest. It's a groundbreaking sci-fi. Parts of it still look amazing. The paintings of the otherworldly is beautiful. Robby is now a movie icon. It's got the eerie music. There is a bit too much exposition. There is a lot of standing around explaining about things. The characters are a little stiff. They spend too much screen time doing very limited things. There's even a ship's cook dressed like coming off a WWII ship providing comic relief. However nobody can deny that this is an iconic sci-fi movie. It deserves its higher rating.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Way ahead of its time

Author: Doug Haxton
22 June 2014

Best sci-fi I've seen for anyone who is introspective and/or curious about the implications of instant learning; conceivably the next great leap after the world wide web. Interesting to me how it was made long before personal computers even

I think the above makes my point. I'm filling lines here to meet the 10 line minimum. What else is there to say, hmm... OK, I liked seeing Earl Holliman without Angie Dickinson.

I'm glad to see an apparent remake of this in in production now that better special effects are available.

I think it will be tough to improve much on Robbie, I think he was perfect although not as animated as I'm sure his reincarnation will be.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

The Benchmark of Great Science Fiction

Author: jacksflicks from Hollywood
1 October 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Forbidden Planet is pure science-fiction. It is not the cliché cowboys-in-space or (despite the "monsters from the id" line in the film) gratuitous monster aliens. Star Wars? Alien? That's too easy, too trite, the same old same old in a future setting. Despite comparisons with Shakespeare's The Tempest, the story of Forbidden Planet stands on its own. And its soundtrack has never been equaled.

A machine that materializes thought "without instrumentalities". Instrumentalities -- when I heard that word I realized this movie is speaking to adults, not adolescents.

Pure science fiction is about the future itself. Forbidden Planet and Blade Runner come to mind. Some Star Trek episodes achieve this. For my money, though, Forbidden Planet is the benchmark against which all other science fiction movies should be measured.

Yes, there is a little dating. Earl Holliman's comic relief character isn't necessary (neither was R2-D2's prissiness). And there was a lapse in the otherwise cool f/x when the spaceship landed on Altair: The powder puffed though holes in the ground was pretty cheesy. But these are minor quibbles which don't detract from the overpowering story.

7.7 IMDb score Forbidden Planet gets is a travesty, a reflection of audiences too stupid to get it. 8.7, which the slicker but inferior Star Wars and the Matrix get, would be far more fitting.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

starship crew searches planet Altair 4 for previous expedition missing for 20 years

Author: jefffisher65-708-541158 ( from United States
30 June 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The plot of Forbidden Planet is so well known to most I won't go over it much here. I have to say that FP is certainly one of the two, or three best sci-fi films of the 1950s. It Came from Outer Space and This Island Earth are two more which a strong argument for being "the best" can be made.

True enough, some of the effects are a bit on the hokey side by modern standards, but this was 1956, after all, remember.

It is good to have some examples of Leslie Nielsen playing serious roles around, and this film is one of his best. I do think some of the dialog is a bit too much like a World War Two film at times, but WW II was only eleven years in the past when Forbidden Planet was produced. And like most, I cold have done as well without the comedy of Earl Holliman's cook character - I can understand why the movie isn't one of his favorites, for this was a thankless role.

I also was knocked out by Anne Francis like every other male who's ever seen this film, even if she perhaps a bit too old for portraying a twenty-year old. She has a number of genre credits, including two classic appearances on the original Twilight Zone, by the way.

Some have complained of the fact that cruiser C-57-D was a flying saucer(the first ever shown with a human crew, I believe), but the 1950s was the heyday of UFOs - the ship does fine to me.

I do feel the preaching at the end was a bit corny perhaps by modern standards; movie audiences of the period were generally much more of the "there are some things man(or here, Krell) were not meant to know" school of thinking, as were most scriptwriters, of course.

Not much else to add save that Robby the Robot remains probably the best film robot to date - he appeared on the Twilight Zone as well as numerous other TV shows at least into the 1970s, including Wonder Woman, I believe.

For those interested in novelizations, one was published in '56 as Forbidden Planet by W.J. Stuart, at a time when this wasn't often done.

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4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Formulaic Sci-Fi - but what a formula !

Author: Roland Rat from London, England
17 February 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This film has all the classic sci-fi ingredients. You can go through and tick all the boxes: alien planet, monsters, flying saucers, ray guns, gung-ho all-American good guys, bad guy that comes to sticky end, a little love interest, the latest special effects, quirky but lovable robot and a really intelligent screen play. Whoa - hang on - that last item's not supposed to be there !

Yes, this film was the Star Wars of it's day. Sit back and soak up the fun with the sure knowledge that after some space cowboy stuff the good guys are sure to win.

But there's so much more to this film than that. It has simply the best storyline of any science fiction film that I've ever seen, period ! By the time the the film nears the end it's already way ahead of most other science fiction films in terms of sheer enjoyment as well as interest. It's already a great sci-fi film. But then it's the thought provoking ending which for me makes this film much the best of it's class.

I'll not go through the excellent and peerless plot, other commentators have already done an great job of that. I'll just mention the two plot items from the end of the film which I found particularly fascinating. These were: firstly, that the crowning achievement of an ancient civilization was to create a machine that could turn dreams into reality. What a fantastic concept, and not so far removed from our own present day hedonistic lifestyles. And that secondly, that this machine should prove the ultimate downfall of this superior alien race of beings. And the agent of that downfall ? Monsters from the Id !

When I first saw this film as a child I was already enthralled by the film as it neared its ending, bit by bit, like a brilliant murder mystery, all was revealed and explained perfectly. But that "Monsters from the Id" thing still haunts and captivates me to this day ...

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4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

A great science fiction movie - superb effects and nice story!

Author: Malte006 from OJ, Denmark
21 June 2005

I just saw this movie on my first viewing and it really impressed me! Being a Sci-Fi fan the picture was a clear "must see" for me.

I didn't know what directly to expect - its star was the "now turned comedy actor" Leslie Nielsen. I really like some of his never spoofs but I haven't really seen him in a "serious" or "non-comedy" role before; except his small performance in "The Poseidon Adventure", which I really loved - though it was a really small role.

Beside Mr. Nielsen, the stars of the movie are the two time Oscar nominee Walter Pigeon and Anne Francis. I haven't seen anything from either of the two before.

Well, to the movie. I didn't have the big expectations once I started - but after the movie really started I really found it interesting. It has a great design, both costume and art-direction; very futuristic and you can see on the most of the set, that it was made in 1950s. But that isn't a problem at all - actually it gives the movie a really cool-retro look - giving this movie a real charm!

The acting wasn't great - but it suddenly wasn't bad either! Like the production design and costumes I really loved the special effects. It is a really magnificent piece of work for the time in which it was made. And the script story was marvelous. It really never stands still, and the story is always evolving!

A MUST SEE - not only for hardcore Sci-Fi fans!

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

ambitious yes, intelligent? well...

Author: HelloTexas11 from United States
15 December 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I should say at the outset there are many, many things I love about 'Forbidden Planet' and yes, I certainly consider it a 'classic' science-fiction film for many reasons. But the adulation it has received over the years goes a bit over the top in my opinion. No less an authority than Leonard Maltin says 'Forbidden Planet' " one of the most ambitious and intelligent movies of its genre." Ambitious? Without a doubt. Intelligent? Depends on what part of the film you're talking about. It certainly was the most prestigious and highly-budgeted science-fiction flick to that point. At a cost of nearly $2 million (this was 1956, remember), MGM pulled out all the stops to produce a dazzling, eye-popping outer space adventure unlike anything seen on the big screen before, even employing artists from the Disney studio for some of the more elaborate special effects. 'Charming' is not usually a word used to describe special effects in sci-fi movies, yet that is the one that seems most appropriate here. Even the dreaded 'Monster from the Id' is only a well-rendered cartoon figure by the Disney people, unlikely to frighten anyone over the age of 8. When I see the various sets and take note of the art design, models, costumes, etc., I am reminded of nothing so much as 'The Wizard of Oz,' with its gorgeously saturated colors and elaborate if not always convincing effects. So much work has gone into these films that one is inclined to smile in admiration at the effort regardless. 'Forbidden Planet' is wonderful to look at. The scenes take place on obvious stage sets that are fabulously decorated, matte paintings of planets and space in the background, and intricately designed miniature sand dunes and so forth to give the illusion of depth. It's a bit like watching the most elaborately-produced stage play you'd ever see. The most believable and convincing scenes are probably the ones inside the massive Krell complex, where shots showing the vast depth and width of this inner space are well-done and credible. But then we get to the actors, darn it. The performances are almost uniformly awful, though in fairness one has to say the dialogue hardly ever transcends the level of adolescent locker-room humor, except for some passages of barely adequate scientific technobabble. Even the great actor Walter Pidgeon is reduced to giving such a hammy performance, it's lugubrious at times. A very young Leslie Nielsen stars as the spaceship commander J.J. Adams, and doesn't convey an ounce of believability or conviction in the entire film. He seems to instinctively know, thirty years ahead of time, that his true forte' lay in comedy, as there are times he seems barely able to keep a straight face reciting his lines. Every forced reaction, whether it is anger or passion or solemn meditation, looks right out of a high school play. Anne Francis, also very young, fares a little better as the supposedly innocent Alta, whom we are to believe has never seen a human male other than her father until the crew of the spaceship shows up. (Alta Morbius, now there's a name for you.) Unfortunately, even at this early age, Anne Francis seems about as virginal and naive as Elizabeth Taylor in 'Butterfield 8.' There is a good story here, buried somewhere beneath the crew-mates' leering comments about Alta and yet another juvenile subplot concerning Earl Holliman's 'Cookie,' ship's cook. (Holliman turns in a horrendous performance too. I'm guessing all these actors went straight from this movie to acting school.) Based on Shakespeare's 'The Tempest,' the story of a dead race, the Krell, and the fantastic world of machines they left behind is what most people tend to remember about 'Forbidden Planet,' and for good reason. For a few minutes here and there, you can forget about the rest of the movie and be dazzled by the Disney artists' conception of the Krell underground complex. Is it enough to make up for the rest of the film's shortcomings? You'll have to decide that on your own. Oh, and of course there's Robby the Robot, every 1950's ten-year-old's idea of what a robot should look and talk like. He's funny. In places. So, 'Forbidden Planet' to me is a very, VERY mixed bag. It deserves credit for being the inspiration for a whole wave of sci-fi films and TV shows that followed, not least of which was 'Star Trek.' But I would suggest that anyone who thinks it's more than well-staged comic book sci-fi go back and watch it again.

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10 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

Nice effects, good story, Godawful script.

Author: chazgeary03 from United States
14 August 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Fellow movie-goers, Like the subject line says. The animated effects were just beautiful, Robby is one of the coolest robots ever, some of the set pieces look great even to my jaded 21st-century eye, the planet's lone woman wore a breathtakingly short skirt, and the idea of a man unconsciously projecting the foulest impulses of his id into reality, creating a terrible invisible monster, was really cool.

But the script ... oh, dear God.

Turgid. Florid. Overly expository, and full of unconvincing pseudo-scientific jibber-jabber. And I know this was released in 1956, but the crew's boorish, panting overtures to the planet's lone woman were just embarrassing. And for no good reason, there were Earth animals running around the planet. All I can figure is that the producer pulled the director aside one day and said, "My little girl loves deer and tigers. Put some deer and tigers in there somewhere." They could have cut this down from ~100 minutes down to about 80, easily. Felt like a good (original-series) Trek episode, but deliberately, clumsily padded out to feature length.

Maybe this is when Leslie Nielsen, who plays the ship's captain, decided to get into spoofing. If you're going to make movies that are sort of goofy, why not do ones that are *deliberately* goofy? Sort of like "The Andromeda Strain," this movie was more about sci-fi gee-whizzery than about effective storytelling.

If you haven't seen it, rent it some afternoon, enjoy this little bit of "the history of the future," but get ready to roll your eyes a few times.

-- Chaz.

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A hugely entertaining classic Sci-Fi film with deeper layers...

Author: CasaK from Belgium
23 December 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is a really engaging and brilliantly smart classic sci-fi film that inventively exposes what could possibly be human's greatest ultimate intrinsic tragedy:

Our animalistic, irrational subconscious side. "Id".

The film's Freudian theme is very cleverly metaphorized through thoughtful, seemingly unimportant details (the cook's lust for drinking, the men's lust for the daughter, etc.) and more obvious representations (the tiger jumping at the commander and the daughter, the robot being the most likable and flawless character in the whole movie, the invisible monster, etc.) during the whole film. It's really amazing how well thought out this film is. Every single aspect of it can be given meaning in the context of the film's main theme.

Even though the story very much (almost exclusively) focuses on the specific observation that's being made about human nature, the film still feels very rich, because of the high ambition that was obviously at the basis of the film's sci-fi context. - First of all, the technical aspect of the film perfectly works, the locations look really good (especially by the standards of that time) and it's just a joy to watch it. - Secondly, the ideas in this story are BIG and the film cleverly takes its time to explicate the film's story and environment. We really get to know and explore this film's sci-fi universe. I love that!

The film kind of made me think of Tarkovsky's Stalker in a certain (far-fetched) way. Stylistically, the films couldn't be further apart, but both movies touch on very similar topical issues, in my opinion. So, don't expect this picture to be a high level philosophical film or anything like that. It just tells an exciting sci-fi adventure that happens to have very interesting substantial aspects to it when studied more intensively. It's said to be loosely inspired by Shakespeare's 'The Tempest'.

Back to the small comparison I wanted to make between both films. In Forbidden Planet, we witness why extremely developed technology in the hands of mankind can be dangerous (it's told in a very symbolic manner, but the argument the film's making is very clear) and in Stalker, we basically get a meditation on why the existence of the "supernatural" (a sort of "wishing room" in this case) could be more dangerous than positive, when it can be manipulated by men. In other words, two of mankind's biggest wishes are fulfilled, but ultimately seem to have unforeseen negative side effects, because there seems to be something wrong with us!

Both films basically talk about the tragic unreliability of humanity. We can't trust other people and we can't even trust ourselves, because we never fully have control over neither of the two. There's a potential monster in all of us, even if there aren't any bad intentions... The point is not to be scared, but to be aware of the 'Id'-aspect of your nature. Don't deny its existence and don't be blind for its possible consequences.

"It will remind us that we are, after all, not God."

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useful remind

Author: Vincentiu from Romania
21 December 2014

one of films who has, for each age, a different message. a real good one for the profound theme who remains more important than the technical solutions for a credible script. a film about knowledge and the huge responsibility about it. about survive in strange world and about price. the result - not a great movie but a wise one. because its subject transforms it in more than a Sci Fi movie but in useful tool for reflection about mankind way. different pieces as bones of a great story about the truth behind yourself. nice special effects and good acting. and, more important, the feeling after its end. because it could be a warning. or, only, precise description of limits for each heavy ambition.

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