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The Day the Sky Exploded (1958)

La morte viene dallo spazio (original title)
Not Rated | | Sci-Fi | 27 September 1961 (USA)
Scientists discover that a group of meteors are hurtling on a collison course with Earth, and if they hit, the planet will be destroyed.

Directors:

Paolo Heusch, Mario Bava (uncredited)

Writers:

Virgilio Sabel (story), Marcello Coscia (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Paul Hubschmid ... John McLaren
Madeleine Fischer ... Katy Dandridge (as Madeline Fischer)
Fiorella Mari Fiorella Mari ... Mary McLaren
Ivo Garrani Ivo Garrani ... Prof. Herbert Weisse
Dario Michaelis Dario Michaelis ... Peter Leduq (as Darrio Michaelis)
Sam Galter Sam Galter ... Randowsky
Jean-Jacques Delbo Jean-Jacques Delbo ... Sergei Boetnikov (as Jean Jacques Delbo)
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Storyline

Scientists discover that a group of meteors are hurtling on a collison course with Earth, and if they hit, the planet will be destroyed.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy | France

Language:

Italian

Release Date:

27 September 1961 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Death from Outer Space See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The voice of the American astronaut character, John McLaren is provided by Shane Rimmer, Canadian actor better known for voicing Scott Tracey of the English series Thunderbirds (1965). See more »

Goofs

In the control room there is a large world map which is drawn very poorly. One would expect such a map to be very accurate, but South America and Africa are clearly distorted. See more »

Crazy Credits

For the English dubbed version, director of photography Mario Bava's name is given as "Mario Baja." His camera operator, Ubaldo Terzano, is listed as "Uraldo Terzano." See more »

Connections

Featured in From Quatermass to Caltiki (2017) See more »

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User Reviews

 
THE DAY THE SKY EXPLODED (Paolo Heusch and, uncredited, Mario Bava, 1958) **1/2
30 April 2010 | by Bunuel1976See all my reviews

This is significant as Italy's first science-fiction movie – two years after its first horror outing, Riccardo Freda's I VAMPIRI (1956); what connects these two films is the multi-faceted involvement behind the cameras of the late great Mario Bava. In fact, the latter was officially the film's cinematographer (curiously credited as Baja on the English titles!) but, as was his fashion, he helped out without credit in the special effects department and the direction as well – a fact also mentioned in Tim Lucas' Audio Commentary for the subsequently deleted Dark Sky DVD of Bava's KILL, BABY…KILL! (1966) and whose hearing prompted me to acquire this film sooner rather than later! Interestingly, the film's original Italian title LA MORTE VIENE DALLO SPAZIO translates to DEATH COMES FROM OUTER SPACE; this was picked up and slightly altered a few years later by another Spaghetti sci-fi entry i.e. Antonio Margheriti's LA MORTE VIENE DAL PIANETA AYTIN aka THE SNOW DEVILS (1967); besides, the film's English title was probably inspired by another contemporary sci-fi cheapie i.e. Fred F. Sears' THE NIGHT THE WORLD EXPLODED (1957)! The film under review emerges as a reasonably enjoyable and above-average entry but, probably stemming from a very limited budget, is bogged down by a talky script and much stock footage of rocket launchings and people rushing into underground shelters. The cast is also somewhat undernourished but does include Paul (Fritz Lang's Indian EPIC diptych [1958-59]) Hubschmid, Ivo (Bava's BLACK Sunday [1960]) Garrani and Giacomo (KILL, BABY…KILL!) Rossi Stuart essaying stock-types of lock-jawed astronaut, self-sacrificing professor and no-nonsense technician respectively. Equally predictable are the characters of the proud Russian expert, the astronaut's lonesome wife, the brainy female scientist, her lothario colleague and the crazed skeptic who reaches breaking-point as Armageddon looms. Nevertheless, despite – or, perhaps, because of – the lack of any really spectacular sequences (the rain of meteorites ostensibly about to annihilate mankind never pose that much of a threat since they are themselves destroyed just as they are entering the Earth's orbit!), one finds himself being charmed just the same by all these overly-familiar elements. Almost needless to say, hot on the heels of this movie came the Riccardo Freda/Mario Bava melange of sci-fi and monster movie – CALTIKI, THE IMMORTAL MONSTER (1959) – which was an altogether livelier effort...


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