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Forbidden Planet

Forbidden Planet

Genders: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

Director: Fred M. Wilcox

Writer: Cyril Hume, Irving Block

Actors: Walter Pidgeon, Anne Francis, Leslie Nielsen, Warren Stevens

Year: 1956
Run time: 1h 38min
IMDB score: 7.7
Updated: one year ago

Movie infomation

Movie name: Forbidden Planet

Genders: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

Imdb Score: 7.7

Runtime: 1h 38min

Released: 15 Mar 1956

Director: Fred M. Wilcox

Writer: Cyril Hume, Irving Block

Actors: Walter Pidgeon, Anne Francis, Leslie Nielsen, Warren Stevens

Company: MGM Home Entertainment

Imdb Link

Forbidden Planet Available Subtitles

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Trailer


Review

Brilliant: Undiluted Pulp Science Fiction on the big screen

5/10 This is the Roman Empire of Science Fiction films. All films before lead into it, and all films since flow out of it. It captures the romance, the spirit, and the nifty look of 1950's pulp science fiction. This is one science fiction movie with a theme, not just eye candy. No matter how high humanity climbs on the evolutionary scale, no matter how advanced our technology becomes, we must never forget the primal instincts of our darker nature.

This film is a masterpiece.

one year ago

A great sci-fi that rose above the 'reds are a-coming' level of its peers and delivered an intelligent script with some humour in an attractive film that has stood up well over the years

5/10 A space ship has carried out the year long journey from Earth to the remote planet Altair-5 with orders to check on a scientific posting there. They find only one small compound on the whole planet – home to scientist Dr Edward Morbius, his daughter Altaira and a fantastic robot called Robby. Learning of the deaths of the others of the original group, Commander Adams decides to stay until he can contact Earth for further orders. However 'something' else is on the planet with them and the ship is subject to sabotage of key equipment. Things escalate when members of the crew are attacked and the full extent of the dangers on the planet become more and more clear.

I have seen quite a few trashy sci-fi's from the 1950's because I rather enjoy their b-movie qualities but this is far from being a genre film because it stands out from the usual sci-fi's that act as an allegory for communism (whether deliberate or in hindsight) because this film is very intelligent – although I assume it was based on the fears of the period as well, or at least I'd like to think so. Certainly, at a time when nuclear war and technology was risking the Earth, it seems only fitting that the film send a message about the destructive power of technology that the Krell were not ready to use. The script is quite intelligent even if the plot has plenty of holes in it if you're looking for them. The idea of a destructive power within the subconscious is interesting and well delivered and it is certainly a lot more thought provoking than many other sci-fi's of the period. It also has a good mix of comedy in the form of the cook and, surprisingly, Robby the Robot (one of the most famous robots in cinema history) but mainly the film succeeds because of the interesting concept and good delivery.

It's not all perfect of course and some of the plot holes are a bit of a pain if you really want to pick at them and also the need for a 'happy' ending spoils what should have been a much darker conclusion – I don't understand why the script spent so much time warning only to offer an optimistic view of the self same things that it had warned against. However, it doesn't overdo this aspect and it still works well enough

The cast are roundly solid even if some of the performances are a little bit stiff and just what you'd expect from the genre. Certainly these actors are not as adept at interacting with special effects as those working with green screen lots are – they generally look clunky when they are firing lasers or interacting with the beast. It's hard to watch Nielsen in straight roles now that I've grown up with him in his Police Squad style material but he is good enough for his material here even if he is a little bit wooden at times. Pidgeon is also a bit wooden but it fits his character and the genre and his performance is good. Anne Francis is a little off but she is a little minx and she serves her purpose on the whole. I appear to be one of the few viewers who liked Holliman's work as the comic relief cook but I must admit to finding the rest of the crew (including Kelly and Stevens) to be quite workmanlike even if they weren't 'bad' per se.

Overall this is a great piece of sci-fi that has stood up really well over the past 50 or so years. The film may look rather quaint by today's standards but it is intelligent, funny and thought provoking – true, it's not really high art but it is certainly heads and shoulders above the standards set by the rest of the genre. Not as spectacular or as action-based as many of our modern sci-fi's but it just has different qualities and is a great film that I'm surprised is not more highly considered or even mentioned on the IMDb top 250!

one year ago

"Forbidden Knowledge"

10/10 I first saw this movie when it originally came out. I was about 9 yrs. old and found this movie both highly entertaining and very frightening and unlike any other movie I had seen up until that time.

BASIC PLOT: An expedition is sent out from Earth to the fourth planet of Altair, a great mainsequence star in constellation Aquilae to find out what happened to a colony of settlers which landed twenty years before and had not been heard from since.

THEME: An inferior civilization (namely ours) comes into contact with the remains of a greatly advanced alien civilization, the Krell-200,000 years removed. The "seed" of destruction from one civilization is being passed on to another, unknowingly at first. The theme of this movie is very much Good vs. Evil.

I first saw this movie with my brother when it came out originally. I was just a boy and the tiger scenes really did scare me as did the battle scenes with the unseen Creature-force. I was also amazed at just how real things looked in the movie.

What really captures my attention as an adult though is the truth of the movie "forbidden knowledge" and how relevant this will be when we do (if ever) come into contact with an advanced (alien) civilization far more developed than we ourselves are presently. Advanced technology and responsibility seem go hand in hand. We must do the work for ourselves to acquire the knowledge along with the wisdom of how to use advanced technology. This is, in my opinion, the great moral of the movie.

I learned in graduate school that "knowledge is power" is at best, in fact, not correct! Knowledge is "potential" power depending upon how it is applied (... if it is applied at all.) [It's not what you know, but how you use what you know!]

The overall impact of this movie may well be realized sometime in Mankind's own future. That is knowledge in and of itself is not enough, we must, MUST have the wisdom that knowledge depends on to truly control our own destiny OR we will end up like the Krell in the movie-just winked-out.

Many thanks to those who responded to earlier versions of this article with comments and corrections, they are all very much appreciated!! I hope you are as entertained by this story as much as I have been over the past 40+ years ....

Rating: 10 out 10 stars

one year ago

Sorry "Star Wars"--the greatest Science Fiction film ever

10/10 Sure Star Wars (a movie I have seen at least fifty times) beats all the others in special effects, but this film has every thing else!

It has horror(non-graphical), romance, robots, witty repartee, intelligence, (surprisingly good) special effects, and drama.

I saw this film a couple of years ago in a revival with a newly struck print, and I was amazed at how well it held up today. I thought the old 40's style electronics would look hokey, but they somehow looked futuristic and moderne.

Ann Francis in here (mostly) short skirts and bare feet with a girlish innocence that is hard to beat still gets a rise out of me.

The Krell monster appearing in the ray beams still scares the bejebees out of me.

Of course we all know that the "Great Bird of the Galaxy" probably modeled much of "Star Trek" from this movie.

No one has yet to beat Robby, the Robot, in terms of personality

(sorry, R2D2 and C3PO).

This movie, overall, is the standard that all other Science Fiction films will have to measure up to!

Honorable mention for the haunting electronic score which kept us all on pins and needles.

one year ago

The Best SF Film Of The 1950s

9/10 FORBIDDEN PLANET is the best SF film from the golden age of SF cinema and what makes it a great film is its sense of wonder . As soon as the spaceship lands the audience - via the ships human crew - travels through an intelligent and sometimes terrifying adventure . We meet the unforgetable Robbie , the mysterious Dr Morbuis , his beautiful and innocent daughter Altair and we learn about the former inhabitants of the planet - The Krell who died out overnight . Or did they ?

You can nitpick and say the planet is obviously filmed in a movie studio with painted backdrops but that adds to a sense of menace of claustraphobia I feel and Bebe and Louis Barron`s electronic music adds even more atmosphere

I`m shocked this film isn`t in the top 250 IMDB films .

one year ago