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Quatermass and the Pit (1967)

Approved | | Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi | 16 February 1968 (USA)
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A mysterious artifact is unearthed in London, and famous scientist Bernard Quatermass is called into to divine its origins and explain its strange effects on people.

Director:

Roy Ward Baker

Writers:

Nigel Kneale (original story), Nigel Kneale (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Donald ... Doctor Roney
Andrew Keir ... Quatermass
Barbara Shelley ... Barbara Judd
Julian Glover ... Colonel Breen
Duncan Lamont ... Sladden
Bryan Marshall Bryan Marshall ... Captain Potter
Peter Copley ... Howell
Edwin Richfield ... Minister
Grant Taylor ... Police Sergeant Ellis
Maurice Good ... Sergeant Cleghorn
Robert Morris Robert Morris ... Watson
Sheila Steafel ... Journalist
Hugh Futcher ... Sapper West
Hugh Morton Hugh Morton ... Elderly Journalist
Thomas Heathcote ... Vicar
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Storyline

While digging a new subway line in London, a construction crew discovers first: a skeleton, then what they think is an old World War II German missile. Upon closer examination the "missile" appears to be not of this earth! This movie examines the age old question of how we came to be on this planet. It is surprisingly scary. Written by KC Hunt <khunt@eng.morgan.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Force more powerful than 1,000 H-Bombs unleashed to devastate Earth! World in panic! Cities in flames! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Hammer [UK]

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 February 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Five Million Years to Earth See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£275,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hammer Films See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

When Quatermass and Roney record Barbara's mental thoughts of the Martian purge onto the machine at the excavation site, it records them onto an early 'portable' reel to reel video tape recorder. A couple of minutes later these images are played back at the Government ministers office to a small audience on a cine-projector. Although not impossible, it does seem highly unlikely that the two scientists would have gone to the time and expense to get the videotape telecine'd just for that screening when they could have just replayed the videotape, especially as there was an urgency to get the ministers and military to take the danger seriously. See more »

Goofs

A minute or so before the end credits roll, as Quatermass is walking away from the devastation, a crew member's hand swings into the right-hand side of the frame and back out again. See more »

Quotes

Col. Breen: Mars is dead, nothing there but a few scraps of lichen.
Professor Bernard Quatermass: Five million years ago it may have been very different. Suppose at that time there were living beings on it with techniques that let them visit the Earth at a time when the most highly evolved creatures here, our own ancestors, were only a type of Pliocene ape.
Minister of Defense: Go on.
Professor Bernard Quatermass: They may have wanted to found another colony, when their own world was doomed, but couldn't endure our atmosphere, so they experimented.
Minister of Defense: Oh, and the insects were responsible?
Professor Bernard Quatermass:
Col. Breen:
Professor Bernard Quatermass:
Howell:
Professor Bernard Quatermass:
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Ultima Ora
(uncredited)
Music by Armando Sciascia
Sparta-Florida Music Group
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Remarkable late 60s Hammer product
29 October 2002 | by funkyfrySee all my reviews

Brilliant writing motivates a suspenseful sci-fi satire with intelligent, but often over the top, acting. Aliens invaded the earth thousands of years ago, and left behind their hatred and evil as a sort of gift to our race. One of the only films to successfully negotiate the fascinating territory between science fiction and the supernatural -- or, science and religion. Good suspense held up by a fast plot that reveals just enough to keep you interested. Poor production values -- the monsters in the film are truly laughable, which may hurt its reception by the younger crowd.


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