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Socially minded yet entertaining, The Day the Earth Stood Still imparts its moral of peace and understanding without didacticism.
All Critics (54)
| Top Critics (6)
| Fresh (51)
| Rotten (3)
| DVD (18)
The Day the Earth Stood Still may at first look like goofy, outdated science fiction, but its timeless warnings about violence, nuclear confrontation and the difficulties of policing the planet have made it an enduring cultural classic.
Like most of Robert Wise's work, this slickly constructed 1951 science fiction film settles squarely in the middle of its genre, better than some and worse than others.
Cast, although secondary to the story, works well.
Edmund H North's intelligent script and Wise's smooth direction are serious without being solemn, while Bernard Herrmann's effectively alien-sounding score reinforces the atmosphere of strangeness and potential menace.
Today, wistful viewers might ask: Where are Klaatu and Gort when we need them most?
It is comforting, of course, to have it made plain that our planetary neighbors are much wiser and more peaceful than are we, but this makes for a tepid entertainment in what is anamolously labeled the science-fiction field.
It's as much Christ parable as science fiction film... yet its message is delivered less like a sermon than a threat.
Yes kids, media was idiotic and hysterical long before the likes of Glenn Beck were around.
A sci-fi classic that still resonates.
Robert Wise looks at the Atomic Age and wonders: 'What would Jesus do?'
Embora soe ingênuo e mesmo datado para os dias de hoje, permanece interessante graças à figura enigmática e superior de Rennie e à ameaça representada pelo impassível Gort.
An enduring film property with an unforgettable catch phrase ('Klaatu barada nikto')...[and] socially conscious themes. [Blu-ray]
An intelligent and challenging science-fiction classic that makes elegant allusions to Jesus Christ's life (even in the character's alias, Carpenter) and speaks directly to the audience in the end defending the importance of non-aggression in a time dominated by fear.
An interplanetary traveler visits Earth to dissuade humans' violence and paranoia.
As science fiction classics go, this one is up there among the best. Yes, it's moralistic, and its main character gets a little preachy at the end, but most good science fiction uses an extraordinary event to comment upon the ordinary, and The Day the Earth Stood Still's comment resonates today.
The performances are a little choppy and over-rehearsed. Michael Rennie sounds like he's reading his lines out of a phone book, and Patricia Neal went to damsel school and graduated with high honors. But all of it is tempered by that classic movie pace and a strong story.
Overall, science fiction when done well looks like this.
A surprisingly mature 50's sci-fi movie. Manages to get across its social messages without coming across as preachy. The cast does a great job with the material given to them, Michael Rennie is fabulous as Klaatu. The visuals are very good for the time and the film also contains some really gripping suspense scenes. A very touching sci-fi tale that still holds up to this day.
Gripping and suspenseful right from the start, this is a genre classic, a tale of a strange happening that keeps you in the dark most of the way. Why is this spaceman here? And what if the world doesn't hear him out? Intriguing and efficient in its storytelling. I'm not sure if it was a "B" movie in its day (probably), but much of what it was doing 60 years ago has since gone mainstream, meaning that this film's still easy to watch (or, cough, remake) nowadays. Essential viewing whether you're a sci-fi fan or not.
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