The Thing from Another World (1951)


For the next six weeks, the Huntsville Library is showing classic science-fiction movies from the 1950’s.  This week we watched The Thing from Another World, which hit the big screen in 1951.

The movie is about a flying saucer that landed near an Arctic research station.  The pilot of the spacecraft was a plant based advanced life form.

The lead scientist at the research station, Dr. Arthur Carrington, wanted to befriend the alien creature.  He hoped to establish a mutually beneficial relationship.  He believed this would lead to huge advancements in science.

Unfortunately, the alien rebuffed Dr. Carrington and killed him.  In the movie, the scientist appeared stupid and naive.

Caption Patrick Hendry was the leading Air Force officer at the research station.  He believed the alien should be killed in order to protect mankind from the possibility of being destroyed by a powerful race of extraterrestrial creatures.

Caption Hendry and his fellow soldiers fought bravely and used electricity to kill the alien.  Caption Hendry was the hero of the movie.

In the early 1950’s, America was facing a growing communist threat.  There was a lot of fear concerning the Soviet Union and many believed America might be invaded by communist.

There were a lot debates on how to deal with this threat.  Should Americans use diplomacy and find a peaceful solution?  Should Americans use military might to stop the spread of communism?

This film used science-fiction to entertain and address culturally significant issues.  The movie is listed and persevered in the National Film Registry, because of it’s cultural significance.

I enjoyed watching the movie.  The plot was clear and concise.  The characters were well developed and often engaged in witty dialogue.  It is worth watching, especially when you know the historical and cultural significance of the film.