Invaders from Mars 1998 Horror Movie Review
Horror movies Review
The cold-war paranoia of the McCarthy era had America in its grip when the original Invaders from Mars was released in 1953, and this atmospheric, highly influential science fiction film—the first of its kind to be filmed in color—was perfectly in tune with the mood of its time. Jimmy Hunt plays the quintessential American boy of the post-war years—a freckle-faced kid named David who’s curious, alert, and possibly prone to elaborate flights of fancy. Then, during a midnight thunderstorm, he witnesses the landing of a flying saucer that buries itself underground in a nearby field. David’s father (Leif Erickson) indulges his son’s urging to investigate… and thus begins a bizarre and chilling story of alien invasion, with David’s cries of “Martians!” falling on deaf ears as more and more adults are abducted, probed, and placed under alien control.
Designed and directed by William Cameron Menzies (one of the greatest production designers of Hollywood’s golden age, whose credits include Gone with the Wind), this eerie little thriller benefits from Menzies’s skill at combining physical settings with psychological undercurrents of paranoid terror and resistance against the alien threat. It’s still most effective for younger viewers, with Jimmy Hunt providing the story’s youthful point of view. And although the malevolent aliens look campy now, with a leader who resembles a bubble-brained squid in a fishbowl, Invaders from Mars remains one of the seminal science fiction films of its time, paving the way for The War of the Worlds and the rapidly developing trend of alien-invasion thrillers. —Jeff Shannon