The 100 Greatest Monsters From Movies And Television #51 - #60
Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens (translated as Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror; also known as Nosferatu: A Symphony of Terror or simply Nosferatu) is a German Expressionist horror film, directed by F. W. Murnau, starring Max Schreck as the vampire Count Orlok. The film, shot in 1921 and released in 1922, was an unauthorized adaptation of Bram Stoker's Dracula, with names and other details changed because the studio could not obtain the rights to the novel (for instance, "vampire" became "Nosferatu" and "Count Dracula" became "Count Orlok").
In Nosferatu, Count Orlok (who is in actuality a vampire) poses as a nobleman from the Carpathian Mountains who moves to the fictional city of Wisborg, Germany, and brings death with him. He lives in a vast castle high in the mountains, which is badly neglected and has a highly sinister feel to it. Local townsfolk refuse to go anywhere near his castle. Orlok is visited by the film's protagonist, the young Thomas Hutter, the assistant of a Wisborg estate agent, who travels to his castle to show properties for sale in Wisborg. Orlok conceals himself in one of his soil-filled coffins and is loaded onto a ship bound for Wisborg. On board the ship, he kills every crew member until only the captain and his first mate remain. Later when the first mate goes to the cargo hold to investigate, Count Orlok rises from his coffin, terrifying the first mate who jumps overboard in fear. The captain ties himself to the wheel of the ship when Count Orlok creeps up on him and kills the captain. Upon his arrival in Wisborg, he spreads disease and plague, forcing the local authorities to declare a quarantine and provoking hysteria amongst the citizens. At the end of the film, Orlok attempts to attack Hutter's young wife Ellen in her room, but is caught unaware by the rays of the rising sun, which burn him away in a cloud of smoke.
Since the word dinosaur was coined in 1842, there have been various different cultural depictions of dinosaurs. The dinosaurs featured in books, films, television programs, artwork, and other media have been used for both education and entertainment. The depictions range from the realistic, as in the television documentaries of the 1990s and 2000s, or the fantastic, as in the monster movies of the 1950s and 1960s.
Dinosaurs began appearing in films soon after the introduction of cinema, the first being the good-natured animated Gertie the Dinosaur in 1912. However, lovable dinosaurs were quickly replaced by monsters as moviemakers recognized the potential of huge frightening monsters. D. W. Griffith in 1914’s Brute Force provided the first example of a threatening cinematic dinosaur, a Ceratosaurus who menaced cavemen. This film enshrined the fiction that dinosaurs and early humans lived together, and set up the cliché that dinosaurs were bloodthirsty and attacked anything that moved.
The now-common trope of dinosaurs existing in isolated locations in today’s world appeared at the same time, with Arthur Conan Doyle's 1912 book The Lost World and the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs as pioneers. The Lost World crossed into the movies in 1925, setting heights for special effects and attempts at scientific accuracy. It is unusual, even today, for attempting to portray dinosaurs as more than monsters that spent their lives in combat. The stop-motion techniques of Willis O'Brien went on to bring dinosaurs to life in the 1933 film King Kong, which merged the tropes of dinosaur combat and dinosaurs in a lost world. His protégé Ray Harryhausen would continue to refine this method, but most later dinosaurs movies until the advent of CGI would eschew such expensive effects for cheaper methods, such as humans in dinosaur suits, modern reptiles enlarged by cinematography, and reptiles with dinosaur decorations.
The Lost World is a 1925 silent film adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle's 1912 book of the same name. The movie was produced by First National Pictures, a large Hollywood studio at the time, and stars Wallace Beery as Professor Challenger. This version was directed by Harry O. Hoyt and featured pioneering stop motion special effects by Willis O'Brien (an invaluable warm up for his work on the original King Kong directed by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack). Writer Doyle appears in a frontspiece to the film. In 1998, the film was deemed "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" by the Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry.
Jurassic Park is a 1993 American science fiction thriller film directed by Steven Spielberg and based on the novel of the same name by Michael Crichton. The film centers on the fictional Isla Nublar (Spanish for "Cloudy Island"), in Costa Rica, where billionaire philanthropist John Hammond (Richard Attenborough) and a team of genetic scientists from his company have created an amusement park of cloned dinosaurs.
The Crater Lake Monster is a 1977 B-rated horror film directed by William R. Stromberg for Crown International Pictures, and starring Richard Cardella. The script was also written by Stromberg and Cardella, and their affiliation with The Crater Lake Monster marked the zenith of their careers.
The storyline revolves around a giant plesiosaur, akin to the Loch Ness Monster, which appears in Crater Lake, next to a small Californian town. As people are attacked by the monster, the Sheriff (Cardella) investigates along with a group of scientists in order to stop the creature.
The Land That Time Forgot is a 1975 fantasy/adventure film based upon the 1918 novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs. The screenplay was written by Michael Moorcock. The film was produced by Britain's Amicus Productions and directed by Kevin Connor. The cast included Doug McClure, John McEnery, Keith Barron, Susan Penhaligon, Anthony Ainley and character actor Declan Mulholland.
Tremors is a 1990 American science fiction horror comedy film directed by Ron Underwood, based on a screenplay by Brent Maddock and S. S. Wilson, and starring Kevin Bacon, Fred Ward, Finn Carter, Michael Gross and Reba McEntire. It was distributed by Universal Studios.
The story follows Valentine McKee (Kevin Bacon) and Earl Basset (Fred Ward) who work in a small, secluded settlement in the Nevada desert. Strange deaths begin occurring in the area and the pair soon discover that this is due to the presence of large, subterranean creatures stalking the residents living in the area. These underground monsters soon become known as 'Graboids'.
Valentine McKee (Kevin Bacon) and Earl Basset (Fred Ward) work as handymen in Perfection, Nevada, an isolated ex-mining settlement that contains only fourteen residents, among them survivalist couple Burt (Michael Gross) and Heather (Reba McEntire) Gummer, and Walter Chang, owner of the general store. A new arrival is Rhonda LeBeck, a graduate student conducting seismology tests.
Val and Earl tire of their hand-to-mouth existence and leave for Bixby, the nearest town. They discover a man dead at the top of an electrical tower. Jim Wallace, the town doctor, announces that he died of dehydration. As they are leaving again, the duo discover sheepherder Old Fred and his flock horribly butchered. Val and Earl return to Perfection, thinking that a murderer is on the loose. They warn two road-construction workers they encounter, but after Val and Earl leave something pulls one of the workers underground, while a rock slide kills the other and blocks the only road out of town.
Val and Earl discover the town's phones dead and head for the police in Bixby, but are thwarted by the rock slide. They return to Walter's store, where they find something wrapped around their truck's back axle: the severed body of a large snakelike creature. The townsfolk hunker down for the night; the "snakes" attack the doctor and his wife, killing them both and pulling their car underground.
The next morning, Val and Earl leave to get help, this time on horseback. They discover the doctor's buried car. Suddenly one of the attackers erupts out of the ground. Each "snake" is one of three "tongues" employed by an enormous burrowing worm-creature that Walter later names "Graboids". Thrown from their horses, the two men run for their lives. When they jump a concrete aqueduct their pursuer rams into its wall, killing itself. Rhonda determines from her readings that there are three more creatures in the area. They realize the creatures find them due to vibrations, but cannot tunnel through rock. One of the creatures traps the trio overnight at a cluster of boulders. Rhonda has the idea of pole vaulting from boulder to boulder. They reach her truck and return to town.
They are met with disbelief until a Graboid appears, disabling Val and Earl's truck. The humans retreat into their homes or the store, but a Graboid bursts through the store's floor, killing Walter.
The Gummers return to their home after hunting the "snake-things" and contact the others via CB radio, but the noise of the couple's tumbler leads a Graboid to smash into their basement. The Gummers kill it with firearms, but another of the monsters disables their vehicle. In town, the Graboids attack the foundations of the buildings, knocking over the trailer of a resident and dragging him down. Realizing the town is being dug out from under them, Val and Earl plan to escape on a flatbed trailer pulled by a bulldozer, which is too heavy for the Graboids to move. Val reaches the vehicle while the others distract the Graboids. Everyone is collected, including the Gummers, and they set out for the safety of a nearby mountain range.
The Graboids dig a pit-trap in the bulldozer's path, wrecking it. The humans use Burt's home-made explosives to drive the creatures away long enough to reach the safety of a boulder, where Earl has another idea: tricking the Graboids into swallowing Burt's bombs. This works once, but on the second try the last Graboid spits the explosive onto Burt's pile of bombs, sending the humans scattering. Val, Earl and Rhonda are stranded yards from the boulder, with the Graboid blocking their path to safety. Val has one more bomb and one last idea: he lets the Graboid chase him to the edge of a cliff and "stampedes" it with the bomb, then jumps out of its way, sending it through the cliff-face to its death. The group returns to town, and Earl pushes Val into approaching the clearly-interested Rhonda romantically.
It (also referred to as Stephen King's It) is a 1990 horror television miniseries based on the novel of the same name. The story revolves around an inter-dimensional predatory life-form that is simply referred to as "It", which has the ability to transform itself into its prey's worst fears, which allows it to exploit the fears and phobias of its victims while also disguising itself when hunting. The main protagonists are "The Losers Club", or "The Seven", a group of social outcasts who discover "It" and vow to destroy him by any means necessary. The series takes place over two different time periods, the first when the Losers first discover "It", and the second when they're called back to defeat "It", who has resurfaced. "It" commonly takes the form of a demonic clown called "Pennywise the Dancing Clown", which it uses to lure children and can kill them. It takes place in the fictional town of Derry, Maine, USA.
Mike Hanlon, the only member of the Seven who never left Derry, summons the rest of the group back to their hometown when "It" returns and kills a little girl . Stan, remembering their attempt to kill "It" 30 years prior and fearful what may happen, commits suicide instead of returning.
As the Seven (now technically six) congregate in Derry, each has another frightening encounter with "It". Henry Bowers, having been placed in a mental hospital after accepting blame for the child deaths in the 1960s, escapes under the influence of "It" (which takes the form of his deceased friend Belch) and attempts to murder the remaining Seven. After escaping, Henry attacks Mike at the hotel where the Seven are staying and stabs him, after which Henry accidentally commits suicide and dies.
At the hospital, Mike gives Bill the two silver slugs they made to use against "It" when they were children. Bill's wife Audra follows him to Derry and is captured by "It" (disguised as a gas station attendant who later turns into Pennywise). Bill, Beverly, Richie, Eddie, and Ben return to the sewers and rescue Audra, who has become catatonic after looking at "It"'s deadlights. They make their way to "It"'s lair, and it is there they discover, to their limited comprehension, "It"'s true form: a massive multi-legged monster, equipped with giant mandibles and menacing eye-stalks, that resembles a giant spider.
During the climax, Bill, Richie, and Ben are paralyzed by the deadlights, located on "It"'s abdomen. Eddie is grabbed and killed by "It" before Beverly shoots out the deadlights with her childhood slingshot and one of the silver earrings. The others mourn Eddie, then kill "It" by disemboweling the "spider" and ripping out its heart.
To conclude the film on a positive note, Richie returns to his showbiz career which extends into movies, Ben and Beverly marry and are expecting a child, Mike is released from the hospital and remains in Derry, but considers whether he ought to move now that Derry no longer has a lighthouse keeper job. Bill helps Audra to come out of her catatonia by taking her on a seemingly suicidal bicycle ride impersonating the Lone Ranger, which is something he had done years earlier to help revive a young Stan who was frozen with fear. As the film closes, Pennywise's evil laugh is heard one last time.
56. SKELETON WARRIORS
Jason and the Argonauts is a 1963 Columbia Pictures fantasy feature film starring Todd Armstrong as the titular mythical Greek hero in a story about his quest for the Golden Fleece. Directed by Don Chaffey in collaboration with stop motion animation expert Ray Harryhausen, the film is noted for its stop-motion monsters. The score was composed by Bernard Herrmann, who also worked on other fantasy films with Harryhausen, such as Mysterious Island and The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad.
See Also: 7th Voyage of Sinbad 8 x 10 Studio Still - Skeleton Warrior - Original Studio Image
Pelias (Douglas Wilmer) usurps the throne of Thessaly by killing King Aristo. However, there is a prophecy that he will be overthrown by a child of Aristo wearing one sandal. When he kills one of Aristo's daughters after she had sought and been granted the protection of Hera, Pelias makes an enemy of the goddess.
Twenty years later, Jason (Todd Armstrong), Aristo's son grown to manhood, saves the life of Pelias during a chance encounter, but loses a sandal doing so. He does not know that he has rescued his father's murderer, but Pelias recognizes his nemesis. Pelias keeps his identity secret. However, he cannot just kill Jason; the prophecy also says that he himself would die.
When he learns that Jason is undertaking a dangerous quest to obtain the fabled Golden Fleece to rally the people of Thessaly, Pelias encourages him, hoping that he will be killed in the attempt. Men from all over Greece compete for the honor of joining Jason. Since their ship is named the Argo after the ship's builder Argos (Laurence Naismith), they are dubbed the Argonauts. Among those chosen are Hercules (Nigel Green) and Acastus (Gary Raymond), the son of Pelias, who is sent by his father to sabotage the voyage.
Jason is taken to Mount Olympus by Hermes (Michael Gwynn) to speak to the gods Zeus (Niall MacGinnis) and Hera (Honor Blackman). Hera tells him that she wishes him well, but that Zeus has imposed restrictions on her assistance (Jason, like all mortals, is a piece in the game which the gods play against each other. This is an accurate portrayal of Greek theology and rarely found in any modern medium). Jason is told that he can only invoke Hera's aid five times (the same number of times his sister called on the goddess by name for help before she was slain). In response to Jason's unasked questions, Hera tells him to search for the Fleece in the land of Colchis, on the other side of the world.
Many dangers threaten the expedition. When the Argonauts run perilously low on supplies, Jason turns to Hera. She guides him to the Isle of Bronze, but warns him to take nothing but provisions. However, while chasing some goats, Hercules and his young friend Hylas (John Cairney) find a partially-open treasure chamber of the gods, surmounted by an enormous bronze statue of Talos. Despite Hylas' warning, Hercules steals an enormous brooch pin the size of a javelin. The statue comes to life and attacks, causing much mayhem before Jason can destroy it using Hera's advice. Hylas goes missing and is presumed dead, but the guilt-ridden Hercules refuses to leave until he knows for certain. The other Argonauts will not abandon Hercules, so Jason is forced to call on Hera for the last time. She confirms that Hylas is indeed dead and that Hercules is destined not to continue with them.
Hera also directs them to seek out Phineas (Patrick Troughton), the blind seer, for the way to Colchis. They find him tormented by two blue-skinned, bat-like Harpies sent by Zeus to punish him for misusing his gift of prophecy. In return for imprisoning the flying creatures, Phineas tells Jason what he needs to know and gives Jason his only possession, an amulet. To reach Colchis however, they must pass between the Clashing Rocks, a strait flanked by towering rock cliffs that shake and drop boulders to sink any ships attempting to pass between them. Fortunately for the Argonauts, they learn this second hand. Another ship tries to run the strait from the other direction and founders. In despair, Jason throws Phineas' gift into the water; the god Triton emerges and holds back the rocks long enough to let the Argo pass through. On the other side, they pick up three survivors of the other ship, including Medea (Nancy Kovack), the high priestess of the goddess Hecate.
They sight Colchis the next day. Acastus and Jason disagree on how to approach the King of Colchis. The argument escalates into a swordfight. Eventually Acastus is disarmed and jumps into the sea to escape. Believing him dead, Jason and his men accept an invitation from King Aeëtes (Jack Gwillim) to a feast, but once they are off guard, they are captured and imprisoned. Acastus has betrayed them, telling Aeëtes about their mission. However, Medea helps Jason and his men escape.
Acastus tries to steal the Fleece himself, but is fatally wounded by its guardian, the many-headed Hydra. Jason succeeds in killing the monster and taking the Fleece. But Aeëtes is not far behind. He strews the teeth of the Hydra on the ground and prays to Hecate. The planted teeth sprout out of the ground as armed skeletons who pursue and battle Jason and two of his men (in a famous four minute stop motion sequence that took special effects wizard Ray Harryhausen four and a half months to produce. Seeing that his companions have been slain, Jason escapes by jumping off a cliff into the sea.
The quest fulfilled, he, Medea and the surviving Argonauts start the return voyage to Thessaly.
55. KING GHIDORAH
King Ghidorah (キングギドラ, Kingu Gidora?), sometimes spelled King Ghidrah, King Ghidra or King Ghidora and also known as Monster Zero, is a fictional Japanese monster featured in several of Toho Studios' Godzilla films and (in derivative forms) in their Rebirth of Mothra trilogy. Ghidorah is among the most powerful giant monsters in daikaiju eiga with a reputation that has earned him the title "The King of Terror". He is the main antagonist of the series and is considered Godzilla's archenemy, and has been in more movies than any other opponent of Godzilla, appearing in six films out of the series (seven, if one counts Kaizer Ghidorah, despite the vast difference in size and general appearance between the two). King Ghidorah is so powerful that Godzilla is often required to ally himself with another kaiju, even several, before engaging the three-headed monster in battle, most often with Mothra, Rodan, or Anguirus. The two exceptions to this theme occurred later on in the series, the first being in the 1991 film Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, which resulted in Godzilla defeating King Ghidorah on his own, as well as severing Ghidorah's middle head. The second was in the 2001 film, Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, in which Godzilla defeated Ghidorah, Mothra, and Baragon singlehandedly. King Ghidorah is also one of the daikaiju most often mind controlled; he acts completely autonomously in three movies, in other appearances being controlled for most of its screen time by aliens.
See Also: Ghidorah: The Three-Headed Monster - Godzilla - Movie Poster Print - Limited Edition Numbered Print
Created as an opponent for Godzilla, Rodan, and Mothra in 1964's Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, Ghidorah is a golden dragon-like space alien with two legs, three heads on long necks, no arms, large fan-like wings, and two tails. It was said to be 100 meters tall with a 150-meter wingspan and to weigh 30,000 metric tons. King Ghidorah was brought to life on the movie screen by a stunt actor inside an elaborate three-piece costume, with a team of puppeteers to control the beast's many appendages. Its alarming shrieks (a different ringing pitch for each of its heads) are among the genre's most recognizable sound effects. Its design is due to special effects director Eiji Tsuburaya based on a minimal description in the script: "It has three heads, two tails, and a voice like a bell."
In recent films Ghidorah has undergone several revisions to its origin and appearance. For instance, a 150-meter tall irradiated triplet of genetically-engineered pets called Dorats with a Rodan-like cackle in Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, and a 49-meter-tall guardian monster in Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack. He has been realized via CGI as well as traditional suitmation.
Charles Lee "Chucky" Ray (also known as "The Lakeshore Strangler") is the main antagonist in the Child's Play horror film series. He was created by Don Mancini and is voiced by Brad Dourif.
When being chased by Detective Mike Norris (Chris Sarandon), serial killer and voodoo practitioner Charles Lee "Chucky" Ray (Brad Dourif), is shot and mortally wounded. Before dying in his human body, Ray takes cover inside a toy store, finding boxes of "Good Guy dolls", and uses a voodoo ritual to transfer his soul into one of them. The store is then struck by lightning, and it burns to the ground. Chucky is found by a homeless man, and sold to Karen Barclay, who gives him to her son Andy as a birthday gift.
While Karen is working late, Andy's aunt Maggie agrees to baby-sit. When she has Andy go to bed, which keeps Chucky from watching a news story about Edward "Eddie" Caputo (his former accomplice who had left him stranded on foot the night he was killed), he causes Maggie to fall out a window to her death (by hitting her in the head with a childs hammer).
The next day, apparently upon Chucky's request, Andy visits the house of Eddie Caputo (Neil Giuntoli). As Andy urinates outside, Chucky is revealed as being alive. He sneaks into Eddie's house and blows out the pilot light on the stove and turns up the gas; Eddie, in panicked self-defense, fires his gun and the house explodes, killing him.
Andy is questioned by police about his presence at the explosion; he blames the doll, and is placed in a psychiatric ward for a few days. Karen believes that Chucky is the culprit after finding that there were no batteries in his back. Karen tells Chucky to talk to her, or else she is going to throw him in the fire. Chucky then comes alive in her hands, bites her, and runs out of the apartment.
Karen contacts Mike, who is now investigating Aunt Maggie's death. Although he initially doubts her story, he becomes a firm believer after he is attacked by Chucky in his car, and survives only by shooting Chucky on his shoulder .
Chucky later meets with John (a.k.a. "Dr. Death"), his voodoo instructor from years past, and asks why his gunshot wound bled. John, under torture through a voodoo doll, informs him that his body is slowly conforming to that of a human's, and that he will soon be trapped in the body if he doesn't transfer his soul into the body of the first person that he revealed himself to (which is Andy, and Chucky says he's going to be 6 years old again).
Chucky murders John and leaves to find Andy. Mike and Karen find John before he dies, learning that Andy is in danger and that the only way to stop Chucky is to destroy his heart.
Andy escapes from the psychiatric unit as Chucky brutally kills the head doctor. Mike and Karen rush back to the apartment hoping that Andy is there. Chucky reaches the apartment through the furnace and knocks Andy unconscious with a baseball bat to possess him. After a prolonged struggle, Chucky is thrown into the fireplace by Karen where Andy drops a match, setting Chucky on fire. Thinking that Chucky is dead, Andy and Karen go to help the injured Mike. The heavily burned Chucky attacks again, finally stopping when Mike shoots him through the heart as John instructed.
53. THE 456
Children of Earth is the banner title of the third series of the British television science fiction series Torchwood, which broadcast for five episodes on BBC One in 2009. The series had new producer Peter Bennett and was directed by Euros Lyn, who had considerable experience on the revived Doctor Who. Torchwood is a series about an organisation known as Torchwood which defends the Earth against alien threats. The plot of Children of Earth deals with aliens demanding the Earth's children, and a related earlier conspiracy; as such, Torchwood is pitted against the British government when it attempts to conceal its past actions and concede to the present-day aliens' demands. The first, third, and fifth episodes of the serial were written by executive producer Russell T Davies, who also conceived its overall storyline. The third episode was co-written by James Moran whilst the second and fourth were penned by newcomer John Fay.
The 456 (Pronounced "four-five-six" not "four hundred and fifty-six") served as the main antagonists during the third series.
They are unnamed aliens with whom the government of the United Kingdom made a deal in 1965; the 456 extorted twelve children in return for a cure to an Earth-bound virus which was about to mutate. They are only known by the frequency they are using, 456. When asked for their species name by John Frobisher, they chose to go by this name. They seem to require (or at least prefer) a highly toxic atmosphere, and to be non-humanoid of form, possessing three insect like heads which appear to spew slime whenever the creatures are aggravated or pressured. In Children of Earth: Day Four, parts of the 456 were briefly seen when a government operative entered its cage with a portable video camera. It had 3 heads, which possessed mandibles. The rest of the body is trunklike, like a giant caterpillar. A swelling is briefly shown at the end of the creature. After the 456 return to Earth over forty years later, an ambassador of the species demanded that 10% of the world's children be given to the race as a gift, or else the entire human race would be destroyed. To ensure humanity would accept this deal, the 456 announced their arrival several days in advance by possessing and speaking through every pre-pubescent child on earth. A closer view of the visiting 456 specimen showed it had incorporated the bodies of human children into its own, the two being connected by four vine-like tentacles, because of an unnamed chemical pre-pubescents produce that the creatures use like a drug. According to the 456 themselves, such children 'feel no pain', and 'live long beyond their natural span'. The children do not appear to have physically grown, although they are wizened perhaps mutated in some way and appear to be aware of their surroundings and their own condition; they breathe using respirators. The 456 are responsible for the death of Ianto Jones when they release a deadly virus into a building where Ianto was present. They are eventually defeated when Jack Harkness manages to reverse the frequency of a previous transmission made by the 456 and turn it into a weapon against them, driving them away from Earth, although he is forced to sacrifice his grandson Steven to use him as the source of the frequency broadcast in the first place.
52. THE CYCLOPS
The 7th Voyage of Sinbad is a 1958 Technicolor fantasy film released by Columbia Pictures, directed by Nathan H. Juran. It was the first of three Sinbad films made by Columbia which were conceptualized and animated by Ray Harryhausen and which used a special stop-motion technique called Dynamation (the others being The Golden Voyage of Sinbad and Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger).
Legendary adventurer Sinbad the Sailor (Kerwin Mathews) and his crew are lost on the ocean but accidentally find the island of Colossa. They land for provisions. While exploring, Sinbad encounters Sokurah the magician (Torin Thatcher), fleeing from a giant cyclops. They are able to escape, when Sokurah orders the genie of his magic lamp to create a magical barrier, but Sokurah drops the lamp when the cyclops throws a boulder into the sea, overturning their boat. The cyclops finds and keeps the lamp. Though Sokurah offers Sinbad much to get it back for him, Sinbad refuses. He and Princess Parisa (Kathryn Grant), from the kingdom of Chandra, are on their way to Sinbad's native Baghdad to be married. They are in love and the union would also cement ties between their two nations.
When the Caliph of Baghdad (Alec Mango) refuses to provide Sokurah a ship and crew to retrieve his treasure, the magician secretly shrinks Parisa to the size of a hand. Sokurah claims he knows of a potion that can restore her, but it requires a piece of the eggshell of a roc, a giant, two-headed bird that coincidentally nests on the island of the cyclopses. The caliph has no choice but to provide a ship. Sinbad enlists his loyal men from the previous voyage, but they are not enough, so he also has to recruit thieves and murderers from the Caliph's prison.
Before they reach the island of Colossa, the cutthroats mutiny and capture Sokurah, Sinbad, and his men. However, the sounds of screaming demons from an island south of Colossa madden the crew, and the ship is in danger of being dashed upon the rocks. One of the mutineers releases Sinbad so he can save the ship. Afterwards, Sinbad regains control of the men.
On the island of Colossa, Sokurah insists on splitting into two groups, so that if one is caught, the other can try to rescue them. When Sinbad's party is captured by the cyclops, Sokurah refuses to release them from their wooden cage, instead pressing on to retrieve the magic lamp. The cyclops chases him, forcing him to drop the lamp. Meanwhile, Sinbad has the miniature Parisa slip between the bars and unlatch the cage. Sinbad manages to blind the cyclops and trick it into falling off a cliff to its death.
Sinbad still needs Sokurah to guide him, but takes possession of the lamp, though he does not know how to use it. Parisa suggests she enter the lamp. Inside, she finds the unhappy boy genie (Richard Eyer). He tells her how to summon him in return for a promise to try to free him.
The party reaches the nest of the two-headed roc, just as a giant hatchling emerges from its shell. Some of the men slay it, which incites an attack by the infuriated parent. In the confusion, Sokurah kills Sinbad's faithful lieutenant, abducts the Princess, and takes her to his underground fortress.
Sinbad follows, slipping past the chained guardian dragon. Sokurah restores Parisa to her normal size in return for the lamp. However, he reneges, animating a skeleton swordsman (an effect Ray Harryhausen would reuse in Jason and the Argonauts), but Sinbad defeats it by knocking it off the top of a spiral staircase. He and the Princess flee. As they cross over a river of molten lava, Parisa recalls part of the prophecy the genie told her about. She persuades Sinbad to let her throw the lamp into the lava, freeing the genie from his slavery.
Sinbad and Parisa find their escape route blocked by a second cyclops. They release the dragon to fight and kill the cyclops, while making good their escape back to the shore. Sokurah then orders the dragon to follow and kill Sinbad. However, Sinbad has time to organize his men to slay the fire-breathing creature with a giant crossbow ballista, which was ironically designed by Sokurah as a defence against the cyclops. The mortally-wounded dragon falls on Sokurah, killing him. Sinbad, Parisa, and the other survivors depart, joined by the genie, Sinbad's new cabin boy.
51. MONSTER FROM THE ID
Forbidden Planet is a 1956 science fiction film directed by Fred M. Wilcox, with a screenplay by Cyril Hume. It starred Leslie Nielsen, Walter Pidgeon, and Anne Francis. The characters and its setting were inspired by those in William Shakespeare's The Tempest, and its plot has many similarities.
See Also: Forbidden Planet Glossy Photo Quality Lobby Card Lithograph
Early in the 23rd century, the United Planets Cruiser C-57D has been sent to the planet Altair IV, 16 light-years from the Earth. Its mission is to discover the fate of an expedition sent 20 years earlier to establish a colony there. The cruiser is contacted by Dr. Edward Morbius, who radios the crew and warns them to stay away. However, the starship's captain, Commander John J. Adams, decides to land on Altair IV.
The ship is met by Robby the Robot, who takes Adams, Lieutenant Jerry Farman, and Lieutenant "Doc" Ostrow to meet Dr. Morbius. Morbius explains that an unknown phenomenon killed nearly all of the other members of his expedition and destroyed their starship, the Bellerophon. Only Morbius, his wife (who died of natural causes), and his daughter Altaira, now 19 years old, survived. Morbius fears the crew of the C-57D will also meet the same fate. Altaira cannot recall any man but her father and barely remembers her mother. She is interested in learning about human relationships.
Morbius explains he has been studying the "Krell", the natives of Altair IV who, despite being far more advanced than humanity, all died mysteriously during a single night 200,000 years before — just as they had achieved their greatest triumph. Morbius shows Cdr. Adams and his party a device he calls a "plastic educator". Morbius explains that the captain of the Bellerophon had tried it and had been killed instantly.
Morbius used it but barely survived. However, he doubled his intellectual abilities as a result. He says this enabled him to build Robby and the other technological marvels in his house. Morbius takes them on a tour of a vast cube-shaped underground Krell installation, 20 miles [30 km] in each direction and powered by 9,200 thermonuclear reactors. This complex had been operating and maintaining itself ever since the extinction of the Krell. When asked about its purpose, Morbius says he knows only that it can supply a practically limitless supply of power.
One night, a valuable piece of equipment in Cdr. Adams's starship is damaged, though the sentries who had been posted spotted no intruders. In response, Adams commands that a defensive force-field fence be set up around his starship. However, this defense proves to be useless when whatever caused the damage returns, passes unseen, and unharmed through the fence to kill Chief Engineer Quinn. Dr. Ostrow is confused after examining the footprints that it left behind, saying that the creature appears to violate all known evolutionary laws.
The intruder returns again on the next night, and it is discovered to be invisible. Its appearance is revealed only in outline by the beams of the force field and the crewmen's weapons. Several men are killed by the monster, including Lt. Farman. While he is asleep in a Krell laboratory, Dr. Morbius is wakened by a scream from Altaira. At that instant, the creature vanishes.
Later, while Cdr. Adams confronts Morbius at the house, Lt. Ostrow sneaks away to use the plastic educator, but he is mortally injured. Just before he dies Ostrow tells Adams that the underground installation was built to materialize any object that the Krell could imagine. However, the Krell had forgotten one vital thing: "Monsters from the id!". Morbius objects, pointing out that there are no Krell left. Adams replies that Morbius's mind — expanded by the plastic educator and thus able to interact with the gigantic Krell device — had created subconsciously the monster that had killed the rest of his expedition 20 years earlier—after they had voted to return to the Earth. Morbius scoffs at Adams's
When Altaira declares her love for Cdr. Adams in defiance of her father's wishes, the alien monster of the mind comes after them. Dr. Morbius commands Robby to kill it, but the robot freezes, unable to harm a human being. Robby recognizes the monster as an extension of Morbius, and his only way to destroy it would be to kill Morbius; instead, the clash of orders burns out the robot's circuits. The creature breaks into the house and then melts its way through the nearly-indestructible door of the Krell laboratory where Adams, Altaira, and Morbius have taken refuge.
Morbius finally accepts the truth that the creature is an extension of his own mind, and he tries to renounce it. When Morbius is mortally injured trying to intervene, the creature disappears permanently. While Morbius lies dying, he directs Cdr. Adams to press a lever that sets the Krell complex to self-destruct. Adams, Altaira, Robby, and the rest of the starship's crew take off for outer space. From there, they witness the destruction of the entire planet of Altair IV from a safe distance away. Before the film ends, Adams says to Altaira, "We are, after all, not God."
(Monster and movie info from Wikipedia)
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