🎥 War of the Worlds – 1953
The Story …
In Southern California, Dr Clayton Forrester, a well-known atomic scientist, is fishing with colleagues when a large object crashes near the small town of Linda Rosa, California, southeast of Corona.
At the impact site, he meets USC library science instructor Sylvia Van Buren and her uncle, Pastor Matthew Collins. Later that night, a round hatch on the object unscrews and falls away. As the three men standing guard at the site attempt to make contact while waving a white flag, a Martian heat ray obliterates them.
The United States Marine Corps later surrounds the crash site, as reports pour in of identical cylinders landing all over the world and destroying cities. Three Martian war machines emerge from the cylinder.
Pastor Collins attempts to make contact with the aliens, but he is disintegrated …
The Marines open fire, but are unable to penetrate the Martians’ force field. The aliens counterattack with their heat-ray and skeleton-beam death ray weapons, sending the Marines into full retreat. Air force jets next attack the Martian war machines, but are annihilated.
Attempting to escape in a small, single-engine military spotter plane, Forrester and Sylvia crash land and hide in an abandoned farmhouse. They begin to develop closer feelings for each other just before the house is buried by yet another crashing cylinder.
A long cable with an electronic eye explores the farmhouse from a nearby war machine and eventually spots them, but Forrester cuts off the lens housing using an axe. Later, when a Martian enters and approaches Sylvia, Forrester injures it with the axe and collects its blood on a cloth.
They escape just before the farmhouse is obliterated by the Martian heat ray. Forrester takes the electronic eye and blood sample to his team at Pacific Tech in the hope of finding a way to defeat the invaders.
The scientists discover how the Martian eye works and also note that the alien blood is extremely anaemic.
Many of the major world capitals fall silent, and global Martian victory is estimated to be only six days away. The United States government makes the decision to drop an atomic bomb on the original group of Martian war machines advancing towards Los Angeles from the east near the Puente Hills.
The atomic blast, however, is totally ineffective as the Martian war machines are protected by electromagnetic shields, resembling glass domes as they become briefly visible. As the aliens continue their advance on Los Angeles, the city is evacuated.
The Pacific Tech trucks are stopped by a mob bent on escape, and all the scientific equipment is destroyed. Forrester, Sylvia, and the other scientists become separated in the chaos.
Forrester searches for Sylvia in the deserted city. Based on a story she had told him earlier, he guesses she would take refuge in a church. After searching through several, he finds Sylvia among many praying and injured survivors.
Just as the Martians attack near the church, their machines suddenly lose power one after the other and crash. Forrester sees one of the aliens expire while trying to leave its fallen war machine.
The narrator observes that though the Martians were impervious to humanity’s weapons, they had “no resistance to the bacteria in our atmosphere to which we have long since become immune.
After all that men could do had failed, they were destroyed and humanity was saved by the littlest things, which God, in His wisdom, had put upon this Earth”.
“Science fiction or Science fact? …”
- Directed by : Byron Haskin
- Screenplay by : Barré Lyndon
- Based on : The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells
- Produced by : George Pal
- Cinematography : George Barnes
- Edited by : Everett Douglas
- Music by : Leith Stevens
- Distributed by : Paramount Pictures
- Release Dates : April 3, 1953
- Gene Barry as Dr. Clayton Forrester
- Ann Robinson as Sylvia van Buren
- Les Tremayne as Major General Mann
- Bob Cornthwaite as Dr. Pryor
- Sandro Giglio as Dr. Bilderbeck
- Lewis Martin as The Rev. Dr. Matthew Collins
- Housely Stevenson Jr. as General Mann’s aide
- Paul Frees as Radio reporter / Narrator (voice)
- Bill Phipps as Wash Perry
- Vernon Rich as Colonel Ralph Heffner
- Henry Brandon as Cop at crash
- Jack Kruschen as Salvatore
- Sir Cedric Hardwicke as Commentator (voice)
Film Information :
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