MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 1,772 this week

Enemy from Space (1957)
"Quatermass 2" (original title)

 -  Sci-Fi | Horror  -  September 1957 (USA)
7.1
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.1/10 from 1,966 users  
Reviews: 53 user | 45 critic

Professor Quatermass, trying to gather support for his Lunar colonisation project, is intrigued by mysterious traces that have been showing up.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

Favorites of FantasticFest 2014

FantasticFest is the largest genre film festival in the U.S., specializing in horror, fantasy, sci-fi, and action movies from all around the world. Here's a list of some of our favorite movies at FantasticFest.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 34 titles
created 15 Mar 2011
 
a list of 28 titles
created 03 Oct 2012
 
a list of 27 titles
created 30 Jan 2013
 
a list of 39 titles
created 02 Feb 2013
 
a list of 40 titles
created 21 Sep 2013
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Enemy from Space (1957)

Enemy from Space (1957) on IMDb 7.1/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Enemy from Space.

User Polls

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A missile, launched by the team led by Prof. Quatermass, lands in the English countryside. Of the three members of the crew, two have mysteriously disappeared. The third one, barely alive, ... See full summary »

Director: Val Guest
Stars: Brian Donlevy, Jack Warner, Margia Dean
Adventure | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A kindly English botanist and a gruff American scientist lead an expedition to the Himalayas in search of the legendary Yeti.

Director: Val Guest
Stars: Forrest Tucker, Peter Cushing, Maureen Connell
Sci-Fi | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An ancient Martian spaceship is unearthed in London, and proves to have powerful psychic effects on the people around.

Director: Roy Ward Baker
Stars: James Donald, Andrew Keir, Barbara Shelley
Adventure | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In this engaging costume melodrama of skulduggery on the low seas set back in the 18th-century, the Royal Crown suspects a bit of smuggling is going on in this locale, and they send Captain... See full summary »

Director: Peter Graham Scott
Stars: Peter Cushing, Yvonne Romain, Patrick Allen
Plunder Road (1957)
Crime | Film-Noir | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

On a dark night of pelting rain, five men stage a well-planned train robbery and get away with a 10,000,000 dollar, nine-ton gold shipment. Dividing the massive haul into three concealed ... See full summary »

Director: Hubert Cornfield
Stars: Gene Raymond, Jeanne Cooper, Wayne Morris
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Young workers are dying because of a mysterious epidemic in a little village in Cornwall. Doctor Thompson is helpless and asks professor James Forbes for help. The professor and his ... See full summary »

Director: John Gilling
Stars: André Morell, Diane Clare, Brook Williams
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

We watch Baron Frankenstein escaping from the guillotine and going to Germany. There, he names himself Dr. Stein and plans to restart his experiments by using parts of dead bodies.

Director: Terence Fisher
Stars: Peter Cushing, Francis Matthews, Eunice Gayson
Sci-Fi | Mystery | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Radioactive mud-like creature terrorizes a Scottish village during the 1950's.

Directors: Joseph Losey, Leslie Norman
Stars: Dean Jagger, Edward Chapman, Leo McKern
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A dead and frozen Baron Frankenstein is re-animated by his colleague Dr. Hertz proving to him that the soul does not leave the body on the instant of death. His lab assistant, young Hans, ... See full summary »

Director: Terence Fisher
Stars: Peter Cushing, Susan Denberg, Thorley Walters
Drama | Sci-Fi | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

When the USA and Russia test atomic bombs at the same time, it knocks the Earth out its orbit and sends it spiraling toward the Sun.

Director: Val Guest
Stars: Edward Judd, Janet Munro, Leo McKern
The Reptile (1966)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Harry Spalding and his wife Valerie inherit a cottage in a small country village after his brother mysteriously dies. The locals are unfriendly and his neighbor Dr. Franklyn (a doctor of ... See full summary »

Director: John Gilling
Stars: Noel Willman, Jennifer Daniel, Ray Barrett
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Last of the Hammer Frankenstein films, this one deals with the Baron hiding out in an insane asylum, so that he may continue his experiments with reanimating the dead, along with inmate Dr.... See full summary »

Director: Terence Fisher
Stars: Peter Cushing, Shane Briant, Madeline Smith
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
John Longden ...
Lomax (as John Longdon)
Sidney James ...
Jimmy Hall (as Sydney James)
Bryan Forbes ...
Marsh
William Franklyn ...
Dr. Brand
Vera Day ...
Sheila
Charles Lloyd Pack ...
Dawson
Tom Chatto ...
John Van Eyssen ...
The P.R.O.
...
Gorman
Michael Ripper ...
Ernie
John Rae ...
McLeod
Marianne Stone ...
Secretary
Ronald Wilson ...
Young Man
Jane Aird ...
Mrs. McLeod
Edit

Storyline

Professor Quatermass, trying to gather support for Moon colonisation his project to colonize the Moon, is intrigued by the mysterious traces that have been showing up on his radar - meteorites crashing down?. Following them to the place where they should be landing he finds a destroyed village, a mysterious factory too close to his designs for the Moon colony for comfort, and some strange, aerodynamic objects containing a mysterious, ammonia-based gas that infects one of his assistants. Officially, the factory is producing synthetic food; but despite the veil of secrecy surrounding it Quatermass succeeds in finding out it harbours aliens with deadly designs on the Earth... Second in Hammer Films' trio of screen versions for Nigel Kneale's classic 1950s BBC serials, with the same director and star as 1955's "The Quatermass Experiment". Written by Jorge Mourinha <rjmourinha@mail.telepac.pt>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A horrible enemy from the unknown strikes terror across the earth!

Genres:

Sci-Fi | Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

September 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Enemy from Space  »

Box Office

Budget:

£92,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Quatermass drives a Mark 6 Humber Hawk estate car, registration SRW 745. See more »

Goofs

Brand plots the location of the objects falling 90/100 miles to the north but, for the apparent scale of the map he is using, his compass setting is much too small and would produce a radius of perhaps 10 miles at the most. See more »

Connections

Featured in The World of Hammer: Hammer (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Midsummer Mood
(uncredited)
Music by Kenneth Essex
Paxton Music Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

DISTURBING CLASSIC OF 50"s SCIENCE-FICTION
27 January 2000 | by (San Francisco, CA) – See all my reviews

This was one of the first of its kind; a subtlety scary vision of a secret alien takeover. X-FILES may owe a debt to this low-budget, but nevertheless effective film of the powers-that-be who are conspiring with the invaders, and one lone, determined scientist who accidentally uncovers the sinister plot.

QUATERMASS II (U.S. title: ENEMY FROM SPACE) was produced before INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, the film it is often compared to, due to their thematic similarities (loss of identity, social oppression, dangers of conformity, and blind allegiance to a greatly questionable, authoritarian power). However, it was released in the U.S. shortly after BODY SNATCHERS, probably making it look like a copycat to some.

Superb writer Nigel Kneale (excellent script, highly original for its time, derived from the earlier BBC serial) was known to strongly despise Brian Donleavy's gruff performance as the lead character. Kneale did not like the fact that Donleavy presented the character as a cold, methodical misanthrope who treats his colleagues like expendable underlings. He will probably want to boil me in oil for saying this, but I felt that presenting the lead character as morally ambivalent and ethically questionable jettisoned the standard 50's scientist/hero sterotype (for once he is not nice and charming). It also added a further degree of tension to the well-plotted story. In many ways, his alienated character is somewhat alien; perhaps that's the only true way to resist social pressures and conditioning. The allegory here is strong.

As the story opens, Quatermass is driving one night on a remote country road. He is furious that the stodgy Whitehall bureaucrats rejected his funding request for a proposed moon colonization project. A speeding car nearly hits him head-on as it runs off the road. The shaken passengers are a frightened woman and her boyfriend, who is in a crazed state, and has a strange black mark on his face.

Quatermass returns to his isolated lab, where radar reveals to his assistants that many small meteor particles (at least that's what they assume they are) have descended over a rural village known as Wynerton Flats.

Going out there with his colleague, Marsh, they first discover his moon project, fully constructed, and some small, mysterious rocks. As Marsh examines one, it emits an eerie gas and pops in his face, leaving the weird black mark. Strange soldiers arrive, behaving like aloof zombies, abduct Marsh, strong-arm Quatermass in the typical fascist tradition, and order him to leave. (There may be one flaw here: Why didn't the "soldiers" either abduct or kill Quatermass, instead of letting him go, so he can inform?)

Naturally the authorities all have tight lips about the secret activities at Wynerton Flats, but Quatermass manages to convince a few officials to go out there with him. A government aid (with that strange black mark on his wrist) conducts a formal tour of the plant, where everything seems to be normal. Not so. The small group is indoctrinated by the zombies (who resemble Nazis), but Quatermass manages to escape.

(This scene truly exposes Donleavy's ruthless side: He and a woman are taken into a large dome, but Quatermass flees, leaving the woman behind, without any concern for her fate. Hell, he doesn't even abide by the old fifties hero tradition by risking his life to save the distressed damsel. In many ways Quatermass was an ahead-of-his-time anti-hero. I always felt that this added a disquieting strength to the drama and the severity of the dire situation, but I guess that Kneale will still vehemently disagree).

I'll stop here, but don't worry, the worse is still to come. The sense of growing unease and mounting terror (strong qualities of your finer British Science Fiction at that time) escalates. Be patient, for it does carefully build into a total state of alarm, as Quatermass and the local angered citizens challenge the invaders (who have taken over most of the government and military officials) to a brutal showdown. There is something highly menacing in those domes.

This impressive film is true Science Fiction at its best. It thrills without pandering and is thoughtful to the point of disturbing. You can't trust anyone. Its social and political implications are definitely troubling. This is not for your Lucas and Spielberg crowd, for we're not talking about commercial catering to eight-year-olds. Val Guest directs in a cold, cynical Kubrickian manner, accentuating the high degree of paranoia, and the picture's black & white photography conveys a bleak, creepy mood. (Sorry, no pretty pictures here). The intriguing story takes on true nightmarish proportions.

The few effects won't win any CGI awards (don't forget, computers weren't around then) but the briefly glimpsed monster (in the gothic Lovecraft tradition) is quite sickening. After all, it can manipulate man's dirty politics, you can't get more reprehensible than that.

From the late sixties to the late eighties this film was unavailable to the public, and it was feared to be permanently lost, but it later was released on video and shown occasionally on the Science Fiction Channel. Many notable Science Fiction and Horror authors (I believe that Harlan Ellison and Stephen King were among them) have championed this small, but remarkable early Hammer production. This is the film that many others have "borrowed from." Just a polite way of saying RIPPED-OFF!

For those seeking an intelligent challenge, check it out.




34 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
I beg to differ john-handscombe
Is this the first movie sequel to add a '2' to the title? jase-18
Wolf Whistle dan-2288
Over-the-top soundtrack Thorpe89
Available on DVD? phaecops-1
How daring were the Sheila shots ? bruno-mailly
Discuss Enemy from Space (1957) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?