The 50’s will go down in history as the greatest decade of all time for science fiction films. During this 10 year period we were introduced to Godzilla, Rodan, giant insects and arachnids and of course every type of alien being bent on invading Earth imaginable. It truly was a great time to be a fan of not only movies, but of science fiction. Some of these films were great; some not so great. The one thing they all had in common though was great imaginations at a time where Hollywood was chock full of original ideas.
This is part four of my ongoing series covering the alien invasion films of the nineteen fifties. In the past I have reviewed THE MAN FROM PLANET X (see HERE), THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL (see HERE) and one of my all time favorites, THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD (see HERE). Now I am here to review another great addition, INVADERS FROM MARS.
The 50’s must have been an amazing time to be a film fan, especially if you liked science fiction. Thanks to pilot Kenneth Arnold’s sighting of nine flying discs on June 24, 1947, the possibility of alien invaders became an all-too-real reality. America had just come out of World War II two years earlier and I am sure that people were still paranoid and tense. Nationwide reports of unidentified flying objects would only add to this paranoia and the film industry took full advantage by playing off of these fears.
Back before Al Gore began promoting global warming initiatives and the phrase “being green” simply meant that you were inexperienced, Hollywood had already tapped into the notion that the human race, for all of its arrogance, is still at the whim of nature. As pollution and environmental issues became more of a concern, some clever horror writers decided to ask a very poignant question: what would happen if nature decided to fight back? What would our chances be if the seemingly innocent creatures we take for granted during our everyday lives suddenly struck at us via an organized unit (e.g. THE BIRDS)? Thus the sub genre of “eco-horror” was born and although these films were never as much fun as the giant atomic beasts abundant in the 1950’s, normal sized animals still made for effective antagonists.