Dr. Miles Bennell returns to his small town practice to find several of his patients suffering the paranoid delusion that their friends or relatives are impostors. He is initially skeptical, especially when the alleged doppelgangers are able to answer detailed questions about their victim's lives, but he is eventually persuaded that something odd has happened and determines to find out what is causing this phenomenon.Written by
Mark Thompson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The picture took only 19 days to make, according to Don Siegel (other reports say as much as 24 days, with about 4 days of studio production). There was no second-unit work and no process shots. See more »
The opening credits say "Produced in Superscope." This is not true. It was produced (i.e. filmed) spherically in the wide screen ratio of 1.85:1, then cropped to 2:1 and printed anamorphically in Superscope, despite the protests of director Don Siegel. See more »
Dr. Miles J. Bennell:
[having returned from finding that large numbers of pods are being grown in greenhouses, to Becky who, exhausetd, had fallen asleep in his absence]
I've been afraid a lot of times in my life, but I didn't know the real meaning of fear until... until I had kissed Becky.
See more »
THE END comes up on the final shot of the film of Miles looking relieved that Dr Hill has believed his story, and is calling the FBI about the alien invasion of Santa Mira. See more »
Five cuts were made by the British censors on its initial release, mainly references to Burke and Hare, the original bodysnatchers. This cut print has been the only one available in the UK until 1998, when a complete widescreen version appeared on the budget video label 4-Front. See more »
A chilling motion picture, well directed by Don Sigel, with a script co-written by Daniel Mainwaring and (uncredited) Sam Peckinpah, based on the novel "The Body Snatchers" (aka "Sleep No More") by Jack Finney.
The excellent musical score is by Carmen Dragon. Kevin McCarthy and Dana Wynter head the cast of this four-star classic in which the inhabitants of a small California town are being replaced by alien look-alikes. The aliens come to Earth in the form of "seed pods" that burst open and spew out a foam which grows into human duplicates, complete with all the memories of the original. The best scene in the film takes place in a greenhouse where several alien pods burst open and disgorge the half-formed copies of the horrified humans.
A prologue, a new ending, and a voice over-narration were added after the film's initial release, to help the audience follow the strange plot. In the added scenes, the story opens with Kevin McCarthy being brought into a hospital, raving about alien invaders. Two doctors (Whit Bissell and Richard Deacon) listen to McCarthy's strange story, which the audience sees as a flashback. At the end of he movie the doctors are understandably skeptical about McCarthy's weird yarn, but an unexpected event lends credence to his story.
Many film reviewers criticize these added scenes as unnecessary, an unwise attempt to conclude the story with a happier ending. But these scenes serve a valuable purpose, increasing the viewers sympathy for McCarthy and his efforts to convince someone that mankind is in danger. The alleged "happier ending" does not establish that mankind will win the battle against the aliens. It simply implies a Chapter Two in this epic struggle. Mankind will have a fighting chance in the war, but the outcome is definitely open to debate.
54 of 66 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this