Invaders From Mars (1953)

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Truth be told I’m actually a good friend with one of the mutant guards, the loveable rogue Frank. He’s adamant that he and his friends get a bum rap and are terribly misrepresented in this movie. Every time we hook up for a drink he goes on and on about how that little evil shit Tony the blob, the weirdo in his hamster ball forced him and his mates to do his evil bidding. Tony, sat in his globe, used his Martian intelligence and projected his telekinesis power to control him to do unspeakable acts of terror. After 60 plus years of counselors and therapists, he’s just started to calm down. Stupidly I made a rookie mistake bringing up this blog post and then gee whizz! I have to endure four hours of constant moaning. Doh, my bad.

Tagline – From out of space… came hordes of green monsters!

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Frank the mutant and his co star David Maclean
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Tony giving his “you will obey me” stare

So what happened before the alien beef between Frank and Tony started you may ask. Well young astronomer David Maclean and all round good kid is chilling out watching the skies from his bedroom window. To his amazement he witnesses a flying saucer crash and disappear underground behind his back yard. What follows is a nice bunch of people have a bit of a nose around the area to which they hear a strange eerie choir start singing, them boom, they disappear.
When they return, they have a right attitude problem and been turned into a right bunch of arseholes. Shouting and snapping at everyone. Lucky our young star David is switched on and proceeds to phone up local astronomer Stuart and meets up with physician Pat. They go off on a UFO sighting history talk to get in the mood for the upcoming fight.

Getting in contact with a Col. Fielding they have the gang together and all head up to the sand pit with a ton of tanks, army personnel and explosives. It’s time to take the fight to the invaders and start off all kinds of shenanigans.

Col. Fielding (Morris Ankrum) is pretty much playing the same character as he does in Earth vs. the Flying Saucers. Nice to think of him kicking alien ass here before having his brain fiddled with later on.

Tagline – Murderous Martian creatures from out of space!

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Col Fielding AKA Morris Ankrum on the left

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Fun Fact – Tony the naughty alien blob face thing was actually played by a mexican lady called Luce Potter who was of a very small stature. She has acting credits from The Incredible Shrinking Man and The Greatest Show on Earth. Her eyes looking back and forth in the film is one of those classic moments that makes this film so much fun.

So enjoyed watching this again, that choir of singing voices representing the sinkhole into the alien den is still as eerie and haunting as it was the first time I watched it. Young actor Jimmy Hunt is the right side of not too annoying and holds the film together well.

Director Tobe Hooper who famously made the low budget horror The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and the big budget Steven Spielberg produced Poltergeist had a go at a remake in 1986. Now I rented it from the video library many years ago and remember it being pretty terrible but something compels me to hunt it down for a rewind… I’m gonna regret it aren’t I? What do you think? Have you seen it?

Here’s the trailer

Further Reading Links

Invaders From Mars 1953 IMDB

Superb in-depth article 

Great article about the soundtrack and music score

Invaders From Mars 1986 Trailer

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