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This Island Earth

Jeff Morrow , Faith Domergue , Jack Arnold , Joseph M. Newman    Unrated   DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 60.78
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This Island Earth + Destination Moon (Full Screen) [Import] + It Came From Outer Space (1953)
Price For All Three: CDN$ 75.39

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Product Description

Amazon.ca

A mysterious, pilotless plane carries scientist Rex Reason to a colony of America's best and brightest minds. They've been kidnapped by a dying alien race, the Metalunians, to repair their defense shield before their enemies destroy their world completely, toiling under their spying eyes and futuristic security cameras (two-way TVs that dominate every room). Jeff Morrow, under a raised forehead, bronze tan, and snow-white hair, philosophizes as Exeter, the thoughtful Metalunian torn between his duty and his morals as he forces the plucky humans to labor in his race's defense. The moody mystery of the first half turns to pure pulp adventure when the humans are transported across the galaxy to the battle-scarred world of Metaluna, under the threatening watch of a monstrous bug-eyed monster with a giant brain for a head and massive claws for hands. There's a genuine sense of wonder to Joseph Newman's intergalactic adventure, one of the most ambitious science fiction films of the 1950s. The story is simple space opera, but the futuristic designs of glass and metal, the marvelous alien makeup, and grandstanding special effects invest the film with a Technicolor splendor. Faith Domergue co-stars as a nuclear physicist and Gilligan's Island's Russell Johnson makes his first professorial appearance as a scientist. Science fiction auteur Jack Arnold was an unbilled codirector. --Sean Axmaker


Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Classic Of Early Science Fiction June 28 2004
Format:DVD
It has taken me a few decades but I have finally seen the film This Island Earth (I had to buy it first). I must say that I was not disappointed by this well-crafted tale.
A physicist working on new power from uranium and the transmutation of elements to create more uranium, gets involved in a project of a far grander scale. Replacement parts are ordered for the lab but the parts that arrive seem far superior to anything that should be available. Then a catalogue of other equipment arrives and soon the lab is set on building a strange device.
The device is a communications console which puts the scientist in contact with a white-haired man seeking out talented scientists to tackle the issue of world-wide peace. The scientist joins a small think-tank of top researchers who are working on increasing the energy available from nuclear reactions. But it soon becomes apparent that all is not what it seems. The head of the project, and his assistant, are actually aliens. They are hoping that the human scientists can come up with a way to save their home planet.
The story then escalates to include the alien world and their plight at the hands of a second, and vicious, race of aliens. We learn of motives, deceits, and how far the peaceful will go to save their own home. Distrust and compassion struggle against one another until the film's conclusion.
This is not a typical B-movie of alien invasion. Unlike most of that type this film was not a quick project. Two and a half years were spent in the making so that the film is pretty well consistent within itself. The pacing of the plot's revelations is well handled and almost resembles a classic tale of A.E. van Vogt. This is definitely a film for fans of the great black and white science fiction films.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unmercifully underated Aug. 17 2000
Format:VHS Tape
I can't believe some of the reviews this has gotten. First people complain about the story, saying it's too generic. Well I hope they find watching modernday chick flicks and teen sex romps after teen sex romps more varied. The general idea of a alien abduction and a planet under attack have been used before, but the interaction between characters sets it apart. The social commentary on imperialism during the early Cold War era is slightly subtle, but anyone watching with an open mind is sure to catch it. The problem is stupid people who believe any movie made before 1997 must be bad pass judgement upon it before they've even watched it.
Second, I see someone complaining about the effects. They're incredible! They would stand up to many current movies. The makeup job on the injured insect slave is incredible, and the scenes of the ship entering the atmospheres could not look more realistic.
The bottom line is movies like this fall into the shadow of todays billion dollar budgeted, 90% computer animated, brainless, meaningless explosion packed films that a retarded kindergartner could write, and thus go unappreciated for their true creativity.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
Of all the Sci-Fi landmarks to have come from the 1950's, Joseph Newman's 'This Island Earth' is probably the most original. In terms of plot, this film is more complex than any of its contemporaries and demands more from its viewers than the stereotypical B-movie of the era. It also utilises suspense mechanisms at a higher level than its brethren apparent.
Luckily, every part of the movie's fabric is strong enough to act as a support beam to hold the immense weight of its storyline. For 1955, the special effects are state of the art and heavily invested in. These hold up impeccably today because the team had crafted something miles beyond sticking sparklers in the tail pipes of die-cast models or messing about with thirty-nine cent wire devices.
Makeup is first rate also, even that of the much-assailed crustaceoid guard. Interestingly (but hardly surprisingly), Jack Arnold (the Godfather of monster makeup) was the one who directed the climactic scenes involving this hostile being. Comprised of the fruits of some very hard work (SFX were two years in the making), 'This Island Earth' looks almost too good to be true. Consequently, it shouldn't take much to appreciate that there is no fair way to make fun of this film or any aspect of its appearance without seriously scrutinising the work in very fine detail.
PLOT - Essentially friendly aliens make contact with top notch Earth scientists to aid in the defence of their home planet Metaluna. However, by the time Exeter (the alien Earth expedition leader) manages to transport two of these nuclear boffins back to Metaluna, it's too late: Metaluna is being destroyed by an enemy civilisation. Exeter and his superiors formulate a last ditch plan - to colonise Earth and make Mankind docile to their orders.
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Format:DVD
I'm so glad I picked this dvd up when it was a reasonable price tag
I don't know how "Goodtimes" gets the rights to release "Universal"
prints but I'll take what I can get.
If you had to timecapsule any techincolor sci-fi film from the 50's
it would be a toss up between this and "Forbidden planet". Would we
go to see this at a big screen film revival...sure we would,classic
sci-fi never gets old (just recycled)
The story is that of "Carl"/Atomic researcher/(jetpilot?)
and his assistant who come across a weird energy in the form of a
condenser that's more stronger than anything they've seen from a
company they cant contact except thru mailorder. Curiously enough
they order an 'interosetor" a device in which few men are capable
to construct. These are the words spoken to them after they plug
in the contraption to reveal on its screen the highbrowed'xceter'
The strange man offers an invitation to learn more at his mystery
location and the Scientist Carl (minus assistant) accepts.
Upon arriving at the Xcetor's grounds via remote controlled plane
He is promply meet by an old fellow grad student "Ruth" who oddly
enough doesn't remember him even though he remembers a passionate
"swim" some years back. The Scientist is introduced to the staff including one other scientist who is wary of the whole set-up.
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Cannot play PAL not this region.
Published 1 month ago by Multicat
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
A great classic.
Published 2 months ago by Sail Boat
4.0 out of 5 stars great old movie
This is the type of movie I used to watch when I was very young. It still has its appeal
Published 6 months ago by Gordon Rickards
5.0 out of 5 stars great old movie
I can remember seeing this in a theatre when I was about ten years old. Enjoy it just as much now.
Published 17 months ago by Ellanore Turner
4.0 out of 5 stars A must-have for any classic sci-fi buff
This is not a great movie, but it is an enjoyable one. It's the kind of movie that's very easy to underestimate. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Theo
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Hokey Sci-Fi Goodness
I remember seeing this movie when I was a kid and being blown away by it. Of course, that was forty years ago and special effects and so on have come a long way in the meantime,... Read more
Published 20 months ago by Captain Canada
2.0 out of 5 stars This boring alien planet
Let's see -- hole-filled plot, cold war hysteria, wooden actors, and a plot that turns out to be completely pointless. Read more
Published on May 1 2011 by E. A Solinas
2.0 out of 5 stars Lamest Sci-Fi You'll Actually Want To See
This film is a really lame duck, mainly because it had so much potential, but the makers obviously ran out of money and couldn't finish it properly. Read more
Published on Oct. 8 2009 by Hale & Hardy
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Classic S/F
I just recently purchased this S/F classic movie from the fifties. The last time I viewed "This Island Earth was some forty years ago on TV. Read more
Published on Oct. 28 2006 by Ray
4.0 out of 5 stars "They're pulling us up!"
About a year ago when suddenly there were no copies of this available through the retail market, I took notice of the incredibly high asking prices that some individual online... Read more
Published on March 13 2004 by James Quirk
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