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Day the Earth Stood Still, the

Michael Rennie , Patricia Neal , Robert Wise    G (General Audience)   VHS Tape
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (234 customer reviews)
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Product Description

Amazon.ca

A hallmark of the science fiction genre as well as a wry commentary on the political climate of the 1950s, The Day the Earth Stood Still is a sci-fi movie less concerned with special effects than with a social parable. A spacecraft lands in Washington, D.C., carrying a humanoid messenger from another world (Michael Rennie) imparting a warning to the people of Earth to cease their violent behavior. But panic ensues as the messenger lands and is shot by a nervous soldier. His large robot companion threatens the Capitol as the messenger escapes the confines of the hospital. He moves in with a family as a boarder and blends into society to observe the full range of the human experience. Director Robert Wise (West Side Story) not only provides one of the most recognisable icons of the science fiction world in his depiction of the massive robot loyal to his master, but he avoids the obvious camp elements of the story to create a quiet and observant story highlighting both the good and the bad in human nature. --Robert Lane, Amazon.com

Product Description

The Day The Earth Stood Still depicts the arrival of an alien dignitary, Klaatu (Michael Rennie), who has come to earth with his deadly robot, Gort (Lock Martin), to deliver the message that earthlings must stop warring among themselves--or else. After being shot at by military guards, Klaatu is brought to a Washington, D.C. hospital, where he begs a sympathetic but frank Major White (Robert Osterloh) to gather all the world's leaders so he can tell them more specifically what he has come to warn them about. Losing patience, Klaatu slips into the human world, adapting a false identity and living at a boarding house where he meets a smart woman with a conscience and her inquisitive son. Both mother and son soon find themselves embroiled in the complex mystery of Klaatu, his message and the government's witch hunt for the alien.

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Most helpful customer reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
By stryper TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
First and foremost, this is a review for the 1951, black and white, 1.33:1 aspect ratio, 2-disc, special edition DVD and NOT for the remake (Gort! Keanu barada nikto :)

Okay so here's the lowdown; as I now have both this new edition and the original single, flipper disc, version, and having watched all of the bonus features on the new 2-disc set, I can tell you this: keep the old disc!

Why, because the 73 plus minute, making of, on the original disc is gone, replaced with a new 23 minute fluff piece that only skims the surface of the story, of the making of this film.

Gone are the lengthy on camera interviews with the producer, director and female lead, replaced instead with film historian's inane babble, with the odd snippet of voice recordings of the director and producer, taken from the 73 plus minutes, making of, from the original disc (without the on camera picture).

Also gone, is the very interesting, "Collectors", segment, tacked onto the end of the original making of, which had several prominent collectors showing off such treasures as the original flying saucer model and Gort statue, used in the actual film, with anecdotes about the film, and where the props they now owned, had ended up after the filming.

As for the extra stuff added to the 2-disc set, nothing is worth the non-inclusion of the original making of from the first disc (most of the new stuff has nothing to do with the film, but instead conveys the political tensions of the world at that time, which, although slightly of interest, is not worth upgrading for).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Klaatu barada nikto" June 19 2004
Format:DVD
There are a handful of 1950's sci-fi movies that have a big reputation - "When Worlds Collide", "The Thing From Another World", "Forbidden Planet", and "The Day the Earth Stood Still". Unfortunately, the first two are really lame in today's world, and only "The Day The Earth Stood Still" really stands up (except for the robot).
Although it has a little of the hokiness inherent to all movies of the 1950's, "The Day The Earth Stood Still" actually has a good meaningful story. The typically-round flying saucer lands in a baseball field in Washington DC. A normal-looking man (Michael Rennie) emerges, offering a small gift. As usual, the military shoots first and asks questions later. A large robot (to be known as "Gort") emerges and stands guard near the ship. In the hospital, the man requests a meeting of all the heads of world government to share an important message. He is told that a meeting of all nations is impossible under the current state of international tension. After recovering a day in the hospital (and self-healing) the man, named "Klaatu", escapes and assumes the identity of Mr. Carpenter (another patient whose clothes he takes). After renting a room in a boarding-house (run by 'Aunt Bea' from the "Andy Griffith Show"), he befriends a young boy ('Bud' from "Father Knows Best"), and later his mother (Patricia Neal).
Klaatu explains his mission on Earth - to bring about the end of nuclear-arms proliferation - to an Einstein-like mathematician, who agrees to help. The mathematician suggests convincing industry and world leaders to meet to hear the message by having Klaatu perform a show of strength.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still standing still after all these years July 19 2004
Format:DVD
Where does one begin with such a classic film. The Day the Earth Stood Still is the definition of classic. Above average for its genre, the movie still hold its own even today.
Robert Wise did a masterful job directing the picture. Given the fact that he was directing a new and somewhat unknown lead actor in Michael Rennie, Wise did a superb job. Could anyone else have played Clatu other than Rennie?
The premise of the story, a visitation from another planetary system to warn us off our reckless advancement into the nuclear age is very timely even in 2004. Clatu, the alien traveler, needs to discuss the ramifications of our behavior with every nation on Earth but learns that such a meeting is impossible given the petty international squabbling and mistrust of the day. Clatu escapes his captivity in the hospital and moves around disguised as a Maj. Carpenter. He meets Helen Benson (Patricia Neal) and her son Bobby (Bill Gray) and learns about many of our human foibles. Also involved is Hugh Marlow's character, Helen Bensons male companion. Sam Jaffe is wonderful as Prof. Barnhardt.
Eventually, Clatu is shot (a second time) and killed. Gort, the robot, with the intervention of Helen revives Clatu and in a final climatic scene Clatu delivers his message. This is a marvelous film even after 53 years.
The DVD is also well worth the small investment. I purchased my copy at a discount store for $5.50....I should be arrested. I agree with an earlier reviewer that the number of extras devoted to this old film is remarkable.
If you get the chance grab this DVD. Even after all these years the movie is fresh and certainly timely. Also, a final observation. Given the paranoia in most modern movies dealing with aliens, The Day the Earth Stood Still is another perspective on the topic of alien visitations. Its amazing how perverted the whole genre has become. This is certainly a reflection of society as a whole.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Strong Science Fiction Drama for it's Day
This is a strong Science Fiction drama that was produced in the 1950s. The drama of this film stands up quite well, even though Special Effects have progressed a lot since the film... Read more
Published 24 days ago by Roller
5.0 out of 5 stars Early sci-fi at its best
Even after 60+ years I still love this film. Although Michael Rennie and Patricia Neal are no longer with us, the moral of the film is still quite valuable. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Mark Feuer
5.0 out of 5 stars The Day The Earth Stood Still [Blu-ray] [2008]
The Day The Earth Stood Still [Blu-ray] [2008] THE ORIGINAL SCI-FI MASTERPIECE

A spaceship lands in Washington D.C., capturing the attention of the world. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Andrew C. Miller
3.0 out of 5 stars ok
My customer was very happy with the DVD. It arrived before it was actually scheduled to do so, so that was a bonus.
Published 13 months ago by Geoff Tagg
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic
For me, it's really a classic. A very good story and very interesting all movie lenght. The special effect and style show that this is an old movie, but still one of movie I really... Read more
Published 14 months ago by marcandre
4.0 out of 5 stars Science Fiction Classic
One of the best Science Fiction Movies of all time "D.E.S.S" never shows it's age. Story wise that is. Sure the special effects are not I.L.A. Read more
Published on April 10 2010 by Terry J. Hinkley
5.0 out of 5 stars un grand film sur le théme dela tolérance
venant d'une autre autre galaxie,klaatu(michael rennie)et gort son robot atterrissent sur la terre dans le but d'y établir une paix durable entre les hommes,malgré... Read more
Published on Sept. 16 2009 by babar54
4.0 out of 5 stars an important movie with a message
though this movie was released in 1951,it's just as relevant today as
it was then.it's about an alien who lands on earth,for reasons unknown
at first. Read more
Published on May 30 2009 by falcon
5.0 out of 5 stars At last, I found it on DVD !!!
A classic old movie I saw when I was much younger ! I've always loved not the threat but the constatation that if we earthlings don't behave adequately by taking our fate in our... Read more
Published on Nov. 10 2005 by TRIPOD
5.0 out of 5 stars All time best SF movie
I just recently watched this terrific DVD at a friend's home.
It has been years since I have seen this movie classic and what a treat this viewing has been. Read more
Published on Sept. 9 2005 by Ray
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