In the near future, civilisation has broken down to the barest fragment of recognisable life. Young people are forming gangs and dominating the wrecks of cities like London. But the ...
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An edited for theaters version of the 1979 Quatermass four part mini-series set in near future. Professor Quatermass must save his granddaughter from the clutches of a popular and sinister cult "Planet People" that "performs raptures".
Several years after the previous serial took place, Professor Quatermass is trying to perfect a dangerously unstable nuclear-powered rocket engine. After a disastrous test firing in ... See full summary »
Professor Bernard Quatermass, Director General of the British Experimental Rocket Group, launches the first manned space flight from Australia. A malfunction sends the rocket and its three ... See full summary »
A research team from an electronics company move into an old Victorian house to start work on finding a new recording medium. When team member Jill Greeley witnesses a ghost, team director ... See full summary »
A young wife decides to complete her education and take her exams. She meets a professor who teaches her to value her own insights while still being able to beat the exams. The change in ... See full summary »
Martin is a committee man. He has numerous schemes and committees organised around the neighbourhood. He is so obsessive about every detail of everything he does he is driving his long ... See full summary »
In the near future, civilisation has broken down to the barest fragment of recognisable life. Young people are forming gangs and dominating the wrecks of cities like London. But the strangest Earth-children are the Planet people, following plumb-bobs to sacred sites, waiting to be "Taken Up". Professor Quatermass, seeking his granddaughter, teams up with Joe Kapp, who is trying to analyse strange signals from space using the last working pieces of electronic equipment. They find the Planet People at a nearby stone circle, a light appears, the signal appears, - and the hippy children are gone. Russian plot? Nirvana? Or something altogether more sinister? Written by
Look past the production values and see greatness!
Nigel Kneale wrote a story here equally as inventive and thought provoking as QUATERMASS AND THE PIT. Perhaps more cerebral and decidedly less horrific, but no less disturbing in its connotations. The concept of an alien technology "harvesting" the world's youth for its own physiological needs is both original and brilliant in its execution. Like its forerunners, originally shown as a mini-series, this being an arguably effective re-edit!
Where the film cannot hold-up to its predecessors unfortunately, is that it was done "on the cheap" and much as I personally respect and admire Sir John Mills' wonderful career (its unassailable highlights being the village idiot in RYANS DAUGHTER and Captain Anson in ICE COLD IN ALEX) for me, he doesn't have the physical presence for the role of Professor Quatermass! Simon MacCorkindale additionally, is a bit on the wussy side for my money. But hey, let's move on to the positives!
The setting of England, moving into a near post-apocalyptic state with anarchy ruling, the Police in the hands of Private ownership is pretty cool for 1978 - we're getting there nicely! Mills portrays the old disillusioned and resigned-to-it-all Quatermass so well. Retired now, all he wants in life is to find his missing grand-daughter. When the first terrifying beam from space sucks up its first victims and destroys a joint Anglo-Russian Space project, he is summoned to assist the Ministry.
Kneale has his knee on the viewer's neck at times as the beam returns for more of the world's youth. Although the budget ran obviously to limited fx, the attack on Wembley Stadium leaves any aware and thinking person with real spinal tap! Again, Kneale resorts to an association with lore and magic and the images of the hippie-esque multitudes as they converge on Stonehenge singing "Huffity Puffity Ringstone Round" are as chilling as any scenes I have ever seen. Kneale reaches right out of the screen here and puts one in an arm-lock. You ain't going nowhere, but WITH them to Ringstone Round!
Quatermass' ultimate understanding of the code and what it all means is literate stuff, his plan to rebuff the alien threat sheer genius. Without giving anything away, the final scene with his granddaughter ranks as one of the most moving and shatteringly emotional scenes in film history. If you can't SEE that, what a shame!
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