Tuesday, May 22, 2012

It! The Terror From Beyond Space (1958)

Considered one of the classic alien creature features from the ’50s and possibly an inspiration for Ridley Scott’s Alien, this is a flick that has been on my radar for quite some time. With it appearing on Netflix Download, I had to give it a spin on a lazy Sunday.

At least, humans have finally set foot on Mars, and all seems to go swimmingly until suddenly all communications are cut off. Now a rescue mission is sent to Mars to find out what happened. They discover the only survivor of the previous mission Carruthers (Marshall Thompson) claims the rest of the crew was killed by an alien entity. The rescue crew scoffs, figuring that Carruthers is the killer. When they lift off they discover that something has snuck aboard and killing the crew one by one. With each passing minute another victim falls to It! The Terror from Beyond Space.

Good Points:
  • Once the action kicks in aboard the space ship, it moves quickly
  • The stakes escalate with each victim
  • Creates a great mood of claustrophobia 

Bad Points:
  • Takes a little too long to get started
  • The visual effects may be too dated for some viewers
  • The creature looks kinda goofy when you see him in the light 

This is one of those movies that I can appreciate as an inspiration for future films. It’s got some great moments, but as a whole it was missing something. It’s probably because I appreciate Alien so much that this ends up a bit pale in comparison. But it’s a solid bit of entertainment for fans of classic sci-fi

Scores (out of 5)
Visuals: 4
Sound: 3
Acting: 3
Script: 3
Music: 3
Direction: 3
Entertainment: 3
Total:  3

Curious about a full review, sent me an email and I’ll make additional thoughts to this review.


  1. A laborious build to the action of the final reel was a fault of many (though not all)1950s scifi movies. I enjoyed this flick as a kid though I haven't seen it in years. Alien is creepier, of course.

  2. Yes I've noticed that too about 50s sci fi movies. I understand building suspense in some cases (and "It!" is certainly going for that). But in other cases it feels like padding because the movie is too short ( "Lost Continent" I'm looking at you). However there are a few that get it just right. Both "The Day the Earth Stood Still" and "Forbidden Planet" move at a good speed, balancing pacing and storytelling pretty well. But they feel like the exception to the rule.