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Village of the Damned (1960)

Passed | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 7 December 1960 (USA)
In the English village of Midwich, the blonde-haired, glowing-eyed children of uncertain paternity prove to have frightening powers.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
General Leighton
...
Sir Edgar Hargraves
...
Mrs. Harrington
Thomas Heathcote ...
Mr. Harrington
...
...
Harrington
Sarah Long ...
Evelyn Harrington
Charlotte Mitchell ...
Janet Pawle
Pamela Buck ...
Milly Hughes
Rosamund Greenwood ...
Miss Ogle
Susan Richards ...
Mrs. Plumpton
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Storyline

In the small English village of Midwich everybody and everything falls into a deep, mysterious sleep for several hours in the middle of the day. Some months later every woman capable of child-bearing is pregnant and the children that are born out of these pregnancies seem to grow very fast and they all have the same blond hair and strange, penetrating eyes that make people do things they don't want to do. Written by Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Beware the stare that will paralyze the will of the world. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 December 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Midwich Cuckoos  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$200,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,400,000, 31 December 1960

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,175,000, 31 December 1960
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The novel this film was based on was called "The Midwich Cuckoos". The title refers to the fact that when cuckoo birds lay eggs, they deposit them in the nests of other (unsuspecting) birds, who then raise the cuckoo chicks as their own. Compounding the insidious nature of this process, the cuckoo chicks often kill their nestmates in competition for food and parental attention. See more »

Goofs

Just before the credits, there's a long crane shot which ends in the trees. It's obvious that the crane snagged a branch on its way up, because a branch suddenly snaps into the frame. They follow the shot with a brief view of other branches waving around, as though to cover the mistake...but the first branch was *not* blowing in the wind. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Prof. Gordon Zellaby: [on telephone] Good morning. Uh, would you get me Major Bernard at his Whitehall number? Thank you.
See more »

Connections

References Bambi (1942) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Brick wall, brick wall
3 October 2004 | by See all my reviews

This classic low budget, black and white film is right up there with the best of the sci-fi/horror movies of the time. It appears that it was shot on a very low budget ($300,000), thus no special effects beyond the superimposed glowing eyes of the children and the burning house at the end (not much of an effect). But it became a real moneymaker and a cult developed around it. They went on to make a sequel which doesn't live up to the original.

The cast, though limited, is quite good. The ever sophisticated, urbane, George Sanders as the scientist; Barbara Shelley from Hammer films as his wife; and little Martin Stephens as David, putative offspring of Shelley and Sanders. This kid is evil personified and does a bang-up job for such a youngster.

The story involves the village of Midwich and the birth of 12 children fathered in a very strange way that is never totally explained, who are intellectual giants with one purpose.....take over the world. Should they be destroyed or studied?....that's the problem facing Sanders and the government. Sanders comes to the inevitable conclusion and because they can read his thoughts, he must think of a brick wall in order to mask his intent. The ending, although not surprising is still effective.

This film is a keeper and is recommended to all those who like their films straight to the point without all the special effects and computer generated action. It's minimal with maximum punch.


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