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Conquest of Space (1955)

Approved | | Sci-Fi | 20 April 1955 (USA)
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An American-led team of International astronauts leave their space station on the first mission to Mars, but the captain's religious beliefs may get in the way.

Director:

Byron Haskin

Writers:

Chesley Bonestell (book), Willy Ley (book) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Walter Brooke ... Gen. Samuel T. Merritt
Eric Fleming ... Capt. Barney Merritt
Mickey Shaughnessy ... Sgt. Mahoney
Phil Foster ... Jackie Siegle
William Redfield ... Roy Cooper
William Hopper ... Dr. George Fenton
Benson Fong ... Imoto
Ross Martin ... Andre Fodor
Vito Scotti ... Sanella
John Dennis ... Donkersgoed
Michael Fox ... Elsbach
Joan Shawlee ... Rosie McCann
Iphigenie Castiglioni Iphigenie Castiglioni ... Mrs. Heinz Fodor
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Storyline

An American-led team of International astronauts leave their space station on the first mission to Mars, but the captain's religious beliefs may get in the way.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Dramatic Effects Never Before Equalled - Or Even Imagined! See more »

Genres:

Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 April 1955 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mars Project See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Rosemary Clooney is seen on the space station's big screen singing the song "Ali Baba," it was taken from the 1953 Paramount release "Here Comes the Girls." See more »

Goofs

In most shots of the "Wheel", it is shown turning counter-clockwise. But in the scenes of Cooper being transported to it after becoming paralyzed aboard the rocket, the Wheel is suddenly turning clockwise - until the final shot of the rescue craft heading toward it, where once again it is moving counter-clockwise. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: This is a story of tomorrow, or the day after tomorrow, when men have built a station in space, constructed in the form of a great wheel, and set a thousand miles out from the Earth, fixed by gravity, and turning about the world every two hours, serving a double purpose: an observation post in the heavens, and a place where a spaceship can be assembled, and then launched to explore other planets, and the vast universe itself, in the last and greatest adventure of mankind, the ...
[...]
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User Reviews

Let's go to Mars.....tomorrow!
25 October 2004 | by jbrotychoorionSee all my reviews

I just bought the DVD of this film, since this was the first George Pal sci-fi film in cinemascope, and I thought it would look pretty good in the letterbox format. The quality was slightly better than the television versions I'd seen in the past, but not incredibly so. The DVD was pretty cheap, so I'm not that disappointed. This film has always interested me because I've always been able to pinpoint when a film was made just by its look, and this one stumped me as a kid. When I first saw this in the seventies on TV I thought, "gee, this is either a very good scifi film from the fifties , or a cheap, bad scifi film from the sixties"....since the effects were elaborate, but hokey, and virtually all the actors were from, or in the case of this film, about to be, familiar TV faces,,,,,with some actors terribly miscast, such as Phil Foster (Laverne DeFazios dad)as a master electrician, and Mickey O'shawnessey as the general's lapdog.....of course, once I realized this was made in 1955, and was a George Pal production, I knew the science would be relatively accurate for the era , and was. In fact its straight out of Von Braun's blueprints, which were eventually altered quite a bit when we actually went to the moon.

What really hurts the film for me, is the silly script which propels the "plot" such as it is. I mean, can you actually believe that the commander of the space station would assemble an enormous spacecraft and only question its design and "whats it for" after it is finished. Then , be told by the designer that it was made to travel to Mars and not the moon, as everyone had expected......and you leave, tomorrow!.....right, just like that, just hop in and go.... Then, as in George Pal's Destination Moon, you constantly have the dumb astronaut (in this case,Foster) asking stupid questions, so that the "audience" can get some accurate scientific explanation for why they can or cannot do something in space. For example , Foster is afraid to go outside the ship (going 20,000 mph)because he thinks he'll fall off and be left behind, but is assured that hes going as fast as the ship and there's no wind friction to blow him off. I mean, would you let someone that clueless go outside the ship to make repairs? Then there's the scene where the Foster is informed they wont be able to take off for a year, the next time the earth aligns with mars......gee, I kinda would like to know those little things before I volunteered for that mission......I kinda understand that its hard to relate all the scientific facts to the audience without sounding academic, but springing it on them in dialogue where the characters should reasonably already know the score.......reminds me of something Kubrick said when he was making 2001: a Space Odyssey....he never wanted to have a scientist in his space movie have to explain scientific principles to the audience....like Mr . Wizard,,,"well, Jimmy , it works like this",,,,,I paraphrase, of course....


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