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Invasion of the Body Snatchers
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Index 170 reviews in total 

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

A well made film

Author: Yasser92 from Sweden
1 November 2015

This movie had an amazing story that gives a nice thrill and makes you wonder what will happen next. It was as adventurous as scary and it will leave you excited during the whole film. The reason i liked this movie was because it was special and was not boring like the modern movies we have today. Many actors in the movie were awesome and there was one character that i loved the most and that was a beautiful girl named Nancy, i wont tell you what she will do in the movie but I can say that she was probably the smartest of them but she did make a mistake, you will understand what I mean after you watched the whole film. I usually don't watch scary movies but this one took the cake and i really recommend it.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

a double bill of two versions, 1956 and 1978

Author: lasttimeisaw from Cairo, Egypt
30 December 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A thrilling double-bill of this classic tall-tale of alien body-snatchers, based on Jack Finney's novel, for latter-day audience, perhaps we can still recall the latest remake THE INVASION (2007, 5/10), as a star vehicle for Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig, which was dead on arrival as a major flop and presages their next colossal box-office fiasco THE GOLDEN COMPASS (2007, 4/10).

Fortunately these two earlier versions are considerably better than the ill-fated mega-star paycheck product, the original 1954 film is directed by Don Siegel (DIRTY HARRY 1971, 7/10), within a condensed 80 minutes, it delineates the absurd story with a gripping pace and impressive monochromatic cinematography.

Miles Bennell (McCarthy) is a small-town doctor, who has just reunited with his sweetheart Becky Driscoll (Wynter), they discover that many townsfolk are progressing into a widespread hysteria and claim their relatives have turned into emotionless where as their pretense remains the same. Soon with another couple Jack and Teddy (Donovan and Jones), they come to grasp that human beings are being duplicated during their sleep by unspecified alien species, things goes downhill quickly, they have to differentiate aliens among people they know, flee for help while try their best to resist the overwhelming sleepiness.

Due to the curb of special effects development and budget, the supposedly bone-chilling scenes with human replicas are visibly mannequins covered with foam, and the extraterrestrial seedpods are equally below the groundbreaking line albeit the eerie and intense atmosphere is rendered in full throttle. McCarthy exerts sizable effort to maintain the intriguing momentum meanwhile manages to squeeze time to ignite the moment of romance with Wynter, although appearing on screen for most of the screen-time, whose role is inclusively subsidiary, merely as a gorgeous love interest and a shorthand of a secretary. The rest of cast is serviceable but there is no room for any showboating in the taut storyline.

Wisely, the film probes into the analysis of humanity-depravity process, even disregard the reference of the purported metaphor for the McCarthyism at then, the sudden action of draining away humanity into a void robot shed an urgent light to our mundane procedure of dehumanizing our personality in a far slower but equally toxic manner.

The film starts with a flashback to the horrifying happenings, and the ending echoes Mile's narrative with a more encouraging upshot, which conveniently slackens off the impact of a no-way-out despair when Miles finally reaches the highway, no one stops to listen to him and overtly the seedpods have already been transported to elsewhere to indicate a thorough duplication of our entire race is ominously under way. Plus, one inexplicable mishap is that there is no explanation of what happens to the original body when his or her inexpressive clone comes into life (thankfully, in the 1978 version, it is explicitly demonstrated).

The 1978 color version is directed by Philip Kaufman (QUILLS 2000, 6/10), the story is transposed to a metropolitan San Francisco, Matthew Bennell (Sutherland) and Elizabeth Driscoll (Adams) are fellow health inspectors, while Elizabeth is living with her dentist boyfriend Geoffrey (Hindle), screenwriter W.D. Richter upgrades the romance to the mutual attraction between two colleges after Geoffrey firstly being replaced.

One striking feature of this remake is to visualize the aliens in a more graphic picture, ever since the opening credits, beholders are fully witnessed how the unearthly life forms arrive and thrive on our planet. Using lurid palette and tilted camera angle to evince that the abnormality is threatening (with a cameo of Robert Duvall), these two stunts are further maneuvered to produce the omnipresent weirdness with the hypnotizing sound effect. From the floral embellishment, to the spooky mud bath, to the paranoiac street mania, Kaufman does modernize the original concept up to the hilt, it is also more scarier and disturbing by default.

Sutherland crafts a slow-burning exigency of being a reluctant hero under a rampant panic, the utile assault he is wreaking on the primitive clones and a final howl guarantees his leading status in this overhaul of a telling fiction. 1978 is a breakthrough year for Brooke Adams, starring both Terrence Malick's DAYS OF HEAVEN (1978, 9/10) and this Sci-Fi remake, her Elizabeth is more intuitive and has more initiative to get to the bottom of the mystery, the chemistry between her and Sutherland is also given a full-extent development. Leonard Nimoy, brings a solid supporting role as Dr. David Kibner, masks his ulterior motive instead of being conspicuously opinionated as Larry Gates in the original movie. A youthful Jeff Goldblum is offered very few to perform, whereas Veronica Cartwright, who would be best remembered as a regular in Sci-Fi or fantasy productions (ALIEN 1979, 9/10; THE WITCHES OF EASTWICK 1987, 5/10), assumes the most sleep-resistant character in the climactic finale.

The ending is essentially different from the original and the novel itself (where the aliens voluntarily retreat), with its silent end-credits, it surprisingly evokes a sublimated sensation of shock value. Also worth mentioning, Kevin McCarthy and Don Siegel's cameos are signs in homage to the original. Generally speaking both films are of excellency to be viewed by newer generations and personally, I give an edge to Kaufman's more comprehensive achievement.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

One of the best remakes to this day.

Author: YeezusChristSuperstar
27 July 2015

Invasion Of The Body Snatchers has to be one of the best remakes made to this day. It is able to go in different directions and expand on ideas that were shown in the original while being able still remain true to the what the originals vision. The idea of aliens imitating humans work better for the times that this was released.With the film being in San Francisco compared to the small town of the original shows how disconnected from each other people really are.It is able to relate to the idea of communism which was at the time seen as a very big threat by the general public and because of this is able to create a very real story about free will.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

"It's Painless... It's Good... Come... Sleep."

Author: rpvanderlinden from Toronto, Canada
31 May 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"It's painless.. It's good... Come... Sleep." These words, irresistible to an exhausted and frightened man, are spoken with soothing authority by the woman he absolutely adores. But this is one of the moments of chilling horror in Philip Kaufman's 1978 re-imagining of the '50's classic, "Invasion of the Body Snatchers".

The original, where a small-town doctor (Kevin McCarthy) is confronted by patients who claim that their loved-ones are not quite themselves, is a superb thriller of gradually escalating paranoia. But Kaufman's version is truly something else altogether. Set in a big city (San Francisco), mostly at night, it is an unfolding nightmare fraught with alienation, suspicion and panic.

I saw this film when it was first released in Toronto. Several weeks later I was looking in a department store window - I remember this clearly - when I heard a police siren. A chill ran up my spine and my mind shot back to this movie. That's the extent to which it got under my skin. It's not just the cacophony of police sirens and garbage truck rumblings which pervade this "Invasion...", it's the part electronic, part orchestral score by Denny Zeitlin and the sound effects by Ben Burtt. Combined with Michael Chapman's eerie photography and extremely visceral images they make this a very creepy experience indeed.

With pod people running amok the pervasive sense of danger is amplified by the fact that the people we get to know and love in the movie are so HUMAN and endearingly eccentric. They're a motley crew played by Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum and Veronica Cartwright. They're not the usual movie cardboard cut-out heroes. It really matters that they survive, and to lose them would be heartbreaking and tragic. This is the weight at the movie's core.

This is not some serious piece that must be gravely pondered. Kaufman and the writer, W.D. Richter, knew full well that they were dealing with pulp sci-fi material and they weren't about to drain the fun out of it. From screaming spores rushing through space to Kevin McCarthy still running after all these years, from winks at American sci-fi culture to Leonard Nimoy's turn as a flatulent pop psychology guru this movie displays a wit that I can't remember having seen before in this sort of venture. Oh, and there's a really demented bit of humour involving a banjo-playing man and his dog.

Kaufman's "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" is a major living, breathing work of art from the paranoid '70's and a triumph of good old-fashioned film-making. It is, surely, one of the best horror movies ever made. It flexes its cold fingers and stirs our deepest fears. What if I go to bed and don't wake up the same? What if I lose what is uniquely me and become like everybody else? What if I can't feel love anymore? Now that's scary.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

It'll give you chills

Author: Winds_of_Destination from United States
3 May 2008

I haven't seen the original 1956 version, but I saw this one last night, and I can tell you, it was a scary good time! Starting off with what I think is a scientifically brilliant alien invasion, the movie kicks off with Elizabeth Driscoll (Brooke Adams) picking a flower and bringing it home. The next morning, her husband is "different", as she says. Many people begin to notice their spouses are "different" in the same way, and she goes to her friend Matthew Bennell (Donald Sutherland) for help. As more and more people begin to get affected by this disease, they feel alone, and the suspense tightens, and the first appearance of a pod really puts things "out there".

All the performances are good, and I thought the two lead roles with Brooke Adams and Donald Sutherland were fantastic. They are part of a foursome that feels isolated, and these "emotionless zombies" seem to be closing in on them, and things are getting a little too hot for them. And they are aided by a mysterious psychiatrist who dismisses the whole "alien invasion", but for all they know, he could be one himself!

That's what makes the film so good. You don't always know whose good and who is bad. A lot of the people have obviously been "snatched", but some of the snatched seem to be smarter than the brainless zombies that are beginning to parade through the San Francisco streets, and that's where the film gets you thinking and gets you worried. While a lot of horror/thriller films are unsuccessful when they reveal their "faceless" monsters, this film is all around scary. The births of those who are being snatched is disturbing and disgusting, and the suspense of isolation is a dark tone that purges the film, making EVERYTHING scary.

It's not PG though. Yes, that's what it's rated, but in no way can it be viewed as a PG movie- it's really more like a strong PG-13. There is frequent scary scenes, disgusting and disturbing images, and some nudity. I thought that with this being PG it wouldn't be scary, but it was.

I was excited to see the film, and was pleased when all was said and done. One of the best quotes in the film is when Nancy says, "Maybe they are from outer know they don't always have to come down in metal ships". If there ever were an alien invasion and war on mankind, it wouldn't be in the form of giant metal ships that blast us with their ray guns. No, it could be something like this, and that's another reason why this movie is so terrifying and brilliant. It gave me chills. 7.6/10.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Atmospherically, Stylistically, and Tonally the Ideal Traditional American Sci-Fi Film

Author: jzappa from Cincinnati, OH, United States
28 October 2007

This film is an essential for the feeling one can enjoy from the right kind of horror or sci-fi movie that makes you just want to snuggle up in front of the TV late at night or on a really rainy or snowy day when no one's around, have everything you need within arm's reach of the couch or comfy chair accompanied by a close ottoman you're camping out on, and lose yourself in it's eerily fun atmosphere. It is several times better than the original, which was treated with an unbearable lightness, virtually as if it were a romantic comedy. Philip Kaufman, the director of this 1978 version, gives the film a fast-paced yet homey style that includes the dynamic cinematography and music that make the exact type of film it is work.

This version does not have the ideal atmosphere for a straight horror movie, but a sci-fi film. It makes us feel the way we want to feel before watching a movie like Forbidden Planet or The Day the Earth Stood Still or The Invisible Man or, actually, like the original Invasion of the Body Snatchers. And in a good, cozy, eerie sci-fi film on a late October or November night, unlike the right horror film, it's great to have a cast of actors with particularly amiable presence, which this film has, such as Donald Sutherland as the modest, practical, and analytical hero, and Jeff Goldblum as Jeff Goldblum, which is absolutely no criticism, because that is exactly what I want to see from Jeff Goldblum. However, Brooke Adams, whose performance is fine if not a highlight like Sutherland's or Goldblum's, looks quite remarkably like Karen Allen.

To me, this version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers is atmospherically, stylistically, and tonally the ideal traditional American sci-fi film.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Visceral update that's pretty good

Author: BroadswordCallinDannyBoy from Boston, MA
25 September 2007

An update of the classic from 1956.

The plot is basically the same with strange pods landing this time in San Francisco. Soon certain people are not quite who they were before lacking all emotional touch they used to have. A small group of people not yet taken by the pods, figure this out and try to do something, but the situation looks hopeless.

As with most remakes the film suffers on many levels. First and foremost anyone who has seen the first will not be in for much surprises since the plot and development is all very similar if not the same. The pods are even shown landing in the beginning of the film, which was a poor move since within the first 2 minutes people who HAVEN'T seen the original will know more than they should to totally enjoy the story. Much of the ambiguity is unnecessarily made clear in those moments and the original was ambiguous well into the film and you never knew more than the characters. Here that is not the case. Even as the pods begin to "awaken" (for lack of a better word) there is a pretty big focus on special effects with all sorts of tentacles going up peoples' noses and ears. I don't know about you, but if a slimy tentacle went up my nose, I think I'd stop breathing and sort of notice. The purely mental connection from the first one was more terrifying. As is small town setting where everyone knows everyone. The big city seems like a good place to place an update of the original, but the spread and suspicions as well as the fears of the protagonists aren't nearly as intense as they were in the first. Perhaps it is due to the general lack of suspense I felt since I have seen the original. First time viewers of the "Body Sntachers" films will undoubted have more to be tense about.

However, this version does deserve credit for some innovation. The twist on the dog scene from the original is a REAL GOOD jolter. There is a fairly big consistency from the original that has been fixed in that we learn what happens to bodies after the pod clone is born. And the special effects aren't bad, quite gruesome actually, but they almost outrun themselves. --- 7/10

Rated PG, pretty generously, for violence and horror. Ages 13+.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Who Can You Trust?

Author: moviewizguy from United States
16 September 2007

The first remake of the paranoid infiltration classic moves the setting for the invasion from a small town to the city of San Fransisco and starts as Matthew Bennell notices that several of his friends are complaining that their close relatives are in some way different. As the invaders increase in number, who can he trust to help him and who has already been snatched?

No, I have not seen any Body Snatcher movie, except this one, obviously, if you don't count "The Faculty" as a Body Snatcher movie (which it is in some way). And yes, it took me this long to watch this movie. Did I like this movie? Of course! I liked it a lot!

This is like "Alien". The movie is chilling and unsettling and it works. The scenes actually works! Yeah, I knew the ending before watching this movie (stupid Wikipedia) and I knew it would've been bad but that's the only complaint I will give to this movie. I didn't like the ending.

Other than that, this movie took my attention from throughout the film. Yeah, there are some scenes that dragged the movie (it was a bit too long, I thought) but there are some really suspenseful and tense scenes.

The performances are great from the cast, including Donald Sutherland and Brooke Adams and the score is really creepy. Body Snatchers is a movie that will scare you with its quiet scenes and make you feel for the characters.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Leonard Nimoy's Best Work

Author: greyparker from United States
17 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I recently watched this film for the first time in years and was struck by a number of things. Not the least of these was the performance of Leonard Nimoy. Bearing in mind the relative breakdown of his career at the time of Kaufman's remake, this is a terrific and brave performance. A lot of actors would probably have sought out a more sympathetic or less complicated role but Nimoy doesn't play it safe. Arguably, as anti-Spock as anything he's ever done, Kaufman elicits a perfectly modulated take on the pop-psych guru-types of the era and then, with great surprise, reveals that Nimoy's Doctor is one of THEM. The spookiest scene in the film may be Nimoy's final conversation with Sutherland and not the explosive ending.

Great stuff.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

the best sci-fi thriller of all time!!!

Author: jkenny-2 from Tuscaloosa, Alabama
13 February 2007

To me this is the best sci-fi thriller of all time. Aliens is good too, but this is the best. I won't spoil the ending, but it is the most chilling of all time! I love the original; it was a touchstone of my youth. We used to refer to it often in my family & in the neighborhood. Pod people... There is a brilliant simplicity in the original, low budget but tight & effective. This remake shows you what can be done w/ money. Everything hinted at is seen in '78. Yet the plot & the tension take on commensurate sophistication and artistic ambiguity. Nimoy's gobbledygook explanation of why this horror is not really happening is one of the greatest things in the movies. It's a brilliant satire on self-help and feel-good pop psychology. Lord, do I wish Hollywood would come up w/ something so brilliant again...

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