🎥 Invasion of the Body Snatchers – 1956
The Story …
A psychiatrist, Dr. Hill, is called to the emergency room of a Los Angeles hospital, where a highly agitated man is being held in custody. The man identifies himself as a doctor, and recounts the events leading up to his arrest and arrival at the hospital.
In the town of Santa Mira, Dr. Miles Bennell sees a number of patients apparently suffering from Capgras delusion, the belief that their relatives have been replaced with identical-looking impostors.
Returning from a trip, he meets his former girlfriend, Becky Driscoll, who has recently come back to town after a divorce. That evening, Miles and Becky are urgently called to the home of Bennell’s friend, Jack Belicec, who has found what appears to be a dead body in his home. Inexplicably, it has no discernible facial features or fingerprints.
To their horror, within a short period of time, it begins to take on the exact physical features of Belicec …
Later, another body is found in Becky’s basement that is her exact duplicate. When Bennell calls psychiatrist Dr. Dan Kauffman to the scene, the bodies have mysteriously disappeared.
The following night, Bennell, Becky, Jack, and Jack’s wife Teddy find duplicates of themselves emerging from giant seed pods in Bennell’s greenhouse.
They conclude that the townspeople are being replaced while asleep with exact physical copies. Bennell tries to make a long-distance call to federal authorities, but the phone operator claims that the lines are all busy and he cannot be put through, so Jack and Teddy drive off to seek help in the next town. Bennell and Becky realize that all of Santa Mira’s inhabitants have been replaced and are devoid of any sort of humanity. They hide at Bennell’s office for the night, vowing to stay awake so as not to be replaced by their duplicates.
The next morning, truckloads of the giant pods arrive in the town center. Becky and Bennell listen as police chief Nick Grivett directs the others to take them to neighboring towns to be planted and used to replace their populations. Kauffman and Belicec, both of whom are now also “pod people,” arrive at Bennell’s office with new pods for Becky and Bennell. They reveal that an extraterrestrial life form is responsible for the invasion. After their takeover, humanity will lose all emotions and sense of individuality, creating a simplistic, bleak world.
After scuffling with and knocking out the duplicate Kauffman, Belicec, and Grivett, Bennell and Becky escape from the office. Outside, they pretend to be emotionless pod people. After seeing a dog dart out into traffic, Becky screams and her reaction exposes their humanity. A town alarm is sounded and the couple flees on foot, pursued by the pod people.
Exhausted, they manage to escape and hide in an abandoned mine outside town, struggling to stay awake.
Later, they hear music, and Bennell leaves Becky briefly to investigate. Over a hill, he sees a large greenhouse farm with hundreds of giant seed pods being loaded onto trucks. Bennell returns to tell Becky. Upon kissing her, Bennell realizes, to his horror, that she fell asleep before he returned and is now one of them. Becky sounds the alarm as Bennell runs away, eventually finding himself on a crowded highway. After seeing a transport truck bound for San Francisco and Los Angeles filled with the pods, he frantically screams at the passing motorists, “They’re here already! You’re next! You’re next!”
Back at the hospital, Bennell finishes his story. Dr. Hill and the on-duty doctor step outside into the hallway, the latter expressing his certainty that Bennell is psychotic.
A truck driver is wheeled into the hall on a gurney after having been badly injured in an accident; the attendant recounts that the man had to be dug out from under a load of giant pods coming from Santa Mira. Finally believing Bennell’s story, Dr. Hill alerts the police to block the roads in and out of Santa Mira; the film ends with Bennell relieved as Hill calls the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
- Directed by Don Siegel
- Screenplay by Daniel Mainwaring
- Based on The Body Snatchers 1954 stories in Collier’s by Jack Finney
- Produced by Walter Wanger
- Cinematography : Ellsworth Fredericks
- Edited by Robert S. Eisen
- Music by Carmen Dragon
- Production Company : Walter Wanger Productions
- Distributed by Allied Artists Pictures
- Release Date : February 5, 1956
- Kevin McCarthy as Dr. Miles Bennell
- Dana Wynter as Becky Driscoll
- King Donovan as Jack Belicec
- Carolyn Jones as Theodora “Teddy” Belicec
- Larry Gates as Dr. Dan Kauffman
- Virginia Christine as Wilma Lentz
- Ralph Dumke as Police Chief Nick Grivett
- Kenneth Patterson as Stanley Driscoll
- Guy Way as Officer Sam Janzek
- Jean Willes as Nurse Sally Withers
- Eileen Stevens as Anne Grimaldi
- Beatrice Maude as Grandma Grimaldi
- Whit Bissell as Dr. Hill
- Richard Deacon as Dr. Bassett
- Bobby Clark as Jimmy Grimaldi
- Tom Fadden as Uncle Ira Lentz
- Everett Glass as Dr. Ed Pursey
- Dabbs Greer as Mac Lomax
- Pat O’Malley as Baggage Man
- Sam Peckinpah as Charlie, the Gas Meter Reader
Film Information :
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