The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) Poster


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  • Grey. (It's a b/w movie.) Edit (Coming Soon)

  • A flying saucer lands in Washington, D.C. carrying a humanlike spaceman named Klaatu (Michael Rennie) and a large and powerful robot named Gort. Moments after emerging from the spaceship, Klaatu is shot and wounded by a nervous US Army soldier. Gort begins to retaliate by vaporizing all of the army weaponry (guns, tanks, etc) at the landing site, until Klaatu stops him. Klaatu is taken to a nearby military hospital where he makes a rapid recovery. He tries to explain to one of the President's top aides that it is imperative he be allowed to address all of the nations of the Earth, but his request is declined. Rather than be detained at the hospital, Klaatu escapes and, under the name of Mr. Carpenter, he takes a room at a boarding house in the city where he befriends widow Helen Benson (Patricia Neal) and her young son Bobby (Billy Gray). With Bobby's help, Klaatu visits Professor Jacob Barnhardt (Sam Jaffe), one of the world's most eminent scientists. Klaatu explains to the professor that his mission is to deliver a warning and an ultimatum to the people of the Earth about their warlike ways and the misuse of atomic energy. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • American science fiction editor and writer Harry Bates [1900-1981] wrote the short story Farewell to the Master on which The Day the Earth Stood Still is based. Farewell to the Master was first published in the October 1940 issue of Astounding Science Fiction magazine. The screenplay was adapted from the story by Edmund H. North. A movie remake, The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008), was released in 2008. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Just after Klaatu disappears from the hospital, the headline in the Washington Chronicle newspaper reads 'Man From Mars Escapes.' In the movie, we are given that Klaatu traveled 250 million miles. Pluto is about 3 billion miles (varies from apogree to perigee) from the sun, and the nearest other solar system (Alpha Centauri) is over 3.5 light years away, so Klaatu must have come from another planet in our own solar system. Using online Solar System Live; 250 million miles is approx 2.6 Astronomical units. For the date of July 11, 1951, Mars was nearly in opposition or very close to 250 million miles away from Earth. The movie states, we are "neighbors," and Venus and Mars are our solar system neighbors, so Mars seems to be the logical choice, even though Klaatu doesn't admit so. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Helen reaches the spaceship just as Gort awakens and vaporizes the two soldiers guarding him. He then begins to take steps in Helen's direction, and his visor starts to lift. Shaking in fear, Helen manages to blurt out, 'Gort, Klaatu barada nikto,' regains her composure and repeats the phrase, following which Gort's visor closes. He picks up Helen, carries her into spaceship, and goes out looking for Klaatu. The army has placed Klaatu's corpse in a holding cell into which Gort easily burns an opening. Gort brings Klaatu's body back to the spaceship where he attempts to revive him while Helen watches incredulously. Meanwhile, more soldiers along with Professor Barnhardt and his colleagues have begun to amass in the park. Inside the spaceship, Klaatu (now fully revived) explains to Helen that his revival is only temporary since their technology is not advanced enough to truly overcome death. Klaatu, Helen, and Gort then exit the ship, and Klaatu addresses the gathered scientists, explaining that humanity's penchant for violence and first steps into space have caused concern among other inhabitants of the universe who have created and empowered a race of robot enforcers including Gort to deter such aggression. He warns that if the people of Earth threaten to extend their violence into space, the robots will destroy Earth, adding, "The decision rests with you." In the final scene, Klaatu gestures goodbye to Helen, he and Gort enter the spaceship, and they depart. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • It has no translation. It represents an inscrutable failsafe against a catastrophic mistake and orders Gort to follow a specific program rather than simply destroying the Earth in the event of Klaatu's death. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Gort was played by actor Lock Martin. Martin's biography says that he was 7'7" tall (2.31 m). Edit (Coming Soon)

  • There are many differences. The story is set in the future, when man has achieved space travel. In the story, Klaatu and the robot emerge from the ship together. Klaatu is shot and killed straight away, by a lunatic rather than a soldier. The robot, who is called Gnut rather than Gort, is green rather than silver. Gnut remains motionless whilst scientists attempt to learn about him, but at night he moves around before resuming his place in the morning. Eventually Gnut recovers a recording of Klaatu's voice from his tomb and uses it to make a copy of him. This copy talks to a reporter. It is eventually revealed in a twist ending that it is the robots like Gnut, not humanoids like Klaatu, who are the masters of the stars. Edit (Coming Soon)


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