Mick Garris on

The Day the Earth Stood Still

Released 1951
Distributor Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Elsewhere on TFH, Joe Dante describes Jack Arnold’s 1958 The Space Children as that rare example of a “pacifist” sci-fi thriller. Robert Wise’s 1951 The Day the Earth Stood Still could qualify as the granddaddy of that genre were it not for its ambivalent message which is, loosely translated, “Be peaceful or we’ll blow you out of the solar system”. Regardless,  Klattu, the kinder, gentler alien who visits earth carrying a stern warning from space, embodies the humanism at the center of Edmund North’s screenplay. An intelligent and, at times, lightly satirical look at 50s paranoia mixed with high-caliber sci-fi thrills (personified by Klattu’s interstellar bodyguard, the ominous robot Gort), Wise’s film continues to make a lasting impression on all who see it. Michael Rennie plays Klattu and the thrilling theremin-powered score is by Bernard Herrmann.

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About Mick Garris

Mick Garris produced and directed a segment for Nightmare Cinema, the spine-tingling horror event of the summer. Previously, Mick created the Masters of Horror hour-long cable series of fright films helmed by well-known genre directors, including himself.  Numerous screenplay assignments led to a career in directing, and he is perhaps best known for his long association with Stephen King, whose novels The Stand and The Shining have been translated by Garris into well-received mini-series. Mick authored the book, “Development Hell”, which can be ordered from Amazon.com at this link! Mick’s recent books “Snow Shadows,” “Tyler’s Third Act,” “Ugly” and “SALOME” are now out from Cemetery Dance. Mick also executive produced Unbroken for Universal Pictures, based on Laura Hillenbrand’s book on Louis Zamperini with Angelina Jolie directing

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