The Quatermass Xperiment (Shock) (The Creeping Unknown) (1955)
In this sci-fi horror film, a spaceship returns to Earth. Only one man survived the voyage and unbeknownst to his fellow humans, he has been infected by an alien fungus upon his hand. He is immediately isolated in a London hospital. There the fungus begins to ominously grow. Quartermass, the world's greatest scientist, is called in to investigate as the fungus is threatening to totally engulf the hapless spaceman. The panicky astronaut breaks out of the hospital. Soon he has become a murderous, ever-growing fungus monster that has become a threat to all of England causing the government to send out protective forces to stop. In the end, it is a BBC television crew that saves the day. They are shooting a documentary at Westminster Abbey when they see the giant thing. Quartermass shows up, corners the beast and electrocutes it with a charge so big that London is thrown into a blackout. … More
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Critic Reviews for The Quatermass Xperiment (Shock) (The Creeping Unknown)
... the film is never less than intriguing and, at is best, is haunting, horrific and riveting.
This is Hammer's first major horror/science-fiction hit, but almost as notable is the fact that its doomed astronaut is the founding member of the studio's tragic rogues' gallery of transformed innocents -- monsters that didn't ask for their fates.
Audience Reviews for The Quatermass Xperiment (Shock) (The Creeping Unknown)
The Quatermass Xperiment was one of the first of the now famous Hammer Horror films. This genre of horror injected new life into a genre that somehow lost its horrifying appeal. The Quatermass Xperiment was aired as serials before it was adapted into a full blown production. The result is a tense, atmosphere Sci Fi horror picture that boasts some impressive performances and effective chills. This film set the standards for a new genre of horror, the Hammer Horror genre. The film has everything you'd expect from a horror film of this period and established the Hammer films as a standout brand for fans that enjoyed more modern twist of the classics of the 1930's. This film succeeds on many levels and it is a definite must see for genre fans. This film spawned a new breed of horror film, and it's one of the defining pictures of Hammer Studios. This film brought some much needed originality to the genre and it is a film that is entertaining from start to finish and relies on a well executed story to thrill the viewer. I've seen quite a few of the Hammer films, and the Quatermass Xperiment is one of the finest examples of revamped horror of the 1950's. If you're looking for a well made Sci Fi horror film, then give this one a shot. If you haven't seen this one yet, then seek this one out as it is a great genre classic that will delight genre fans looking for the right amount of Sci Fi and horror elements in one film. The genre would have more films, and Hammer would assume a permanent place in horror history. If you're new to Hammer horror, this is a perfect place to start.More
The Quatermass Xperiment doesn't quite live up to all the hype as the granddaddy of Hammer Horror. Some parts were legitimately creepy (the cockpit film was disturbing in a last 2 minutes of Blair Witch Project kind of way) and the last 15 minutes were magnificently photographed -- like Third Man magnificently photographed (especially the nighttime zoo scene.) Thse praises aside, all you're really looking at is a lot of running around, some great-looking corpses and a brief but final shot of a really cool-looking creature. It's definitely worth a watch, but not necessarily worth all the trouble of getting a hard-to-acquire copy.More
B-movie horror that cannot really be described as sci-fi with its awful portrayal of science as well as some terrible physics. Pretty poor alien invasion affair that's only worth seeing as a study of the 50s.More
this is the film that made the hammer name synonymous with horror. based on a groundbreaking bbc serial, it's still creepy and intelligent scifi that must have been absolutely terrifying in the 50s. the story recalls everything from frankenstein to the recent district 9. renegade professor quatermass has built and launched the first manned rocket into space. when it crashes back to earth after losing communication with base, rescuers are surprised to find only one of the three astronauts still aboard. and he's not quite the man he used to be. richard wordsworth gives a particularly chilling performance as the spaceman. brian donlevy seems a bit brusque for a scientist; apparently an american star was needed to ensure distribution in the u.s. the film was considered so shocking it received an X rating from the british censor board, a fact emphasized in the title. and it was very successful, producing two excellent sequels. a real treat for fans of 50's sci fi and monster movies!More
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