Invasion of the Body Snatchers - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Invasion of the Body Snatchers Reviews

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½ April 11, 2017
Excellent film that makes you wish there were more genre film remakes of its caliber.
March 25, 2017
In classic horror film fashion, before it was a convention, everybody thinks the protagonist is crazy; surrounding characters do not understand or believe Matthew Bennell (Donald Sutherland). There's this thing that we know from the onset of the movie that nobody else understands. It's like the crazy kids who declare Freddy Krueger is alive in their dreams. Leonard Nimoy is the best catalyst for this because if anybody should understand the bazaar and unnatural it is Spock. Jeff Goldblum seems to be playing a character that will be mirrored 15 years later in Jurassic Park, believing in the insanity, that something is wrong. Everyone from Sutherland to Nimoy is close to understanding what's going on, but they are just missing the mark. By not having Nimoy on our side, the audience is bound to feel unsafe, a terrific exercise in terror, suspending any sense of security the audience would have. Being made to look crazy is the scariest feeling that I can possibly imagine. I appreciate the relation of maddened husbands to infectious disease, or alien hypnotism.

I see an allegory to the feeling imperialism creates - nationalism, ethnic cleansing -- you slowly become the silent minority. We get a sense of how it feels to be on the run, society's target; a Holocaust Jew. To be paralyzed by society's stronghold this way. Like the Borg, all that's left is to assimilate.

What better plot device than a food inspector as the hero in a story about combating invading microbes?! He goes from pulling rat shit out of a French kitchen soup to swinging off rafters, tearing down a warehouse, playing undercover alien, etc. That's a protagonist!

The one hour mark of any movie is a particularly special point, whether it's the shark appearing in Jaws, Silva's reveal in Skyfall... In this film it's gathering acceptance from Leonard Nimoy, which instantly turns on us as we realize he is with the other possessed males. Is he an alien? Has he never not been Mirror Universe Spock all along? We learn this as he walks out of building 227, which is Sutherland's home.

There's such an air of mystery here, the flowers, their purpose, everything involved with this alien invasion. How is it happening, and why? Why is it happening this way and what are the men's role? There's a terrific level of conspiratorial guessing, it's exciting. The birth of Body Snatcher's must've inspired Peter Jackson's Uruk Hai growing from tree roots in Lord of the Rings, like butterflies emerging from cocoons - are their screeches used as sound bites for Black Riders?

Insanity conquers the Earth, and a helpless female is all that hopelessly remains. Not even our hero can survive. We know she'll be the only sane person left in a world gone mad. This film raises questions of infections, particularly the psychological, in which the values of one culture are diminished in favor of its opposite, and how it trickles down and invades the individual.
½ March 20, 2017
Love the gripping story and the eerie atmosphere. Donald Sutherland's screech at the end of the movie still echoes in my
March 10, 2017
haha i can see this being a hit in 1978; it's not bad at all. but i did giggle at a few parts for it's ridiculousness, haha.
November 18, 2016
This is a really solid remake that though it's almost 40years old now, still holds-up really well. The cast is solid, led by Donald Sutherland and with support from Maud Adams, Jeff Goldblum and Leonard Nimoy. There's a palpable sense of paranoia throughout and it is just a really good sci-fi/horror film. Seek it out.
November 6, 2016
One of the best alien invasion movies ever made. It builds so effectively towards one of the most iconic moments in 70s horror cinema.
November 2, 2016
A good film, a very good film that I call Invasion of the booby snatchers. I saw it in a second run theater on Granville Street in Vancouver in 1979. It's the scream, deal and pointing the finger that's really scary. The invasion is total crap. Don't waste your time or money.
November 1, 2016
Grim and frightening remake of the 50's classic movie which I still consider scarier. The big plus of this remake is that it doesn't have a crowd-pleasing ending of "everything will be alright eventually".
October 31, 2016
My favorite version of this particular film.
½ October 27, 2016
"Get some sleep."

San Francisco Health Department employee Elizabeth Driscoll (Brooke Adams) finds some strange flowers in the park and brings them home. By morning, her boyfriend has become strangely distant, so much so that she no longer believes it to be the same man. Her health inspector friend Matthew Bennell (Donald Sutherland) refers her to psychiatrist Leonard Nimoy, and with Jeff Goldblum and wife Nancy (Veronica Cartwright), they set out to uncover the truth behind what soon becomes an epidemic loss of emotion. Their quest for answers will lead to a choice: Conform, or die. And in this film, the difference between the two is negligible at best.

INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS offers reviewers a unique challenge; we could scour galaxies and not find superlatives that do this film justice. Zeitlin's powerful score; Chapman's cinematography, which marries grit to precision; the flawless performances of the ensemble: Too much succeeds too well for so few words to adequately describe. Out of INVASION's many attributes, its effects impress the most. They remain as jaw-dropping as they were forty years ago, in the literal sense that I become a mouth-breather when I watch this film.

Appropriately for a story about the surrender of the individual to the collective, the sum impresses more than its laudable components. Unlike Siegel's film, which most agree critiques either communism or McCarthyism, take your pick, Kaufman's refuses to be reduced to allegory. Oh, critics can read much into the subtext, and they have. It would be impossible to look at INVASION's release date and not be reminded of Jonestown, and yes, there's something delicious about a movie's set in San Francisco during the '70s stripping away free expression in the ultimate perversion of "flower power." No, one cannot truly extricate art from its time, but INVASION feels timeless nonetheless. It needn't rely on anything as abstract as subtext. The "text" itself terrifies enough.

Kaufman's INVASION ranks alongside Cronenberg's FLY and Carpenter's THING as one of the few remakes whose quality justifies its existence. Buy it.
"Come and see."
See also: THE THING (1982)
See also: THE STUFF (1985)
See also: THE FLY (1986)
See also: THE FACULTY (1998)
See also: SLITHER (2006)
October 25, 2016
This movie was specifically designed to dissolve in one's mind slowly, like one of those over the counter cold medications with 'time-release'. The total 'remedy' can't be had until the viewer has ingested more lsd than his mind can handle and finds himself or herself trapped in their room, alone, trying not to drift off to 'sleep', lol.
½ October 23, 2016
Eerie, a bit disturbing at times, and more in detail than the first. One of the best horror/sci-fi movie remakes of all-time that is nearly better than the original.
October 22, 2016
A great update of the original - freaks me out as a kid watching the tv version.
And that ending..
The dog with the face, a bonus..

5 out of 5 backyard pods
October 17, 2016
Fantastic remake. I love the way Kaufman kind of plays with a cameo to suggest that this could take place right after the original.
October 2, 2016
If you love horror this is a classic for good reason. You won't regret watching this one.
½ September 16, 2016
While the original Invasion of the Body Snatchers from 1956 was a B movie classic, the remake by the great Philip Kaufman nearly eclipses its predecessor, a rarity among rarities. Horror fans usually bring it up when talking about remakes, as well as John Carpenter's remake of The Thing and David Cronenberg's remake of The Fly. It takes the basic plot elements of the original film and mixes them up, as well as doing some original stuff with the material. There's even a cameo by Kevin McCarthy, who starred in the original film. The stellar cast includes Donald Sutherland, Leonard Nimoy, Jeff Goldblum, Veronica Cartwright, and Brooke Adams. The effects are fantastic (and hold up) and the idea gets under your skin. A classic film.
½ September 13, 2016
Insufferably boring at times, but a moderately impressive remake of the 1950's classic.
July 29, 2016
Not quite as frightening as I once thought, but the dog scene still chills and the ending is as horrifying and haunting as ever.
½ July 24, 2016
A masterclass in weird, unsettling tension. I loved all the creepy setup, with the extras standing around oddly and staring at the main characters in unusual ways, and just a lot of weird things happening in the background of the frame. And that long, dialogue-free scene at Bennell's apartment is amazing. It's a wonderful slow ratcheting-up of tension, so it's a little disappointing that the third act ends up mostly being scenes of Sutherland and Adams running away from things over and over, and the denouement is kind of a silly action sequence. But overall it's pretty great.
June 25, 2016
It's been quite a while since I saw this film and I'd forgotten how eerie and creepy is was. Arguably a superior remake of the original Don Siegel directed original, this one relocates the story of pod people replacing humans to 1970s San Francisco. Donald Sutherland plays a health inspector who slowly becomes aware people are being replaced by exact clones who are really pod people from outer space. It's a goofy concept, but director Philip Kaufman gets the tone just right, delivering a film that's viscerally thrilling and scary, and at the same time is also an intelligent film that tackles themes around conformity. The remake features a strong cast beside Sutherland, which includes Brooke Adams, Veronica Cartwright, Jeff Goldblum and Leonard Nimoy, along with some fun cameos by the star of the original film, Kevin McCarthy, who early in the film is running through the street shouting "They're coming! They're coming!" and also the original film's director, Don Siegel, appears as a taxi driver. This film was written by W. D. Richter, who wrote a number of memorable films including "Big Trouble in Little China," "Nickelodeon," "Brubaker," and who also directed one of my all-time favorite movies, "The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension." This film is a must see for fans of sci-fi and is one that's has enough of a crossover appeal for general audiences. And although I knew what was coming at the end of the film, it is still just chilling and gave me shivers. And one more thing, oh man, that dog near the end of the movie!
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