FORBIDDEN
PLANET

HOME REVIEWS FEO'S STUFF FEO AMANTE THEATER SCIENCE MOMENT UNFAIR RACIAL CLICHÉ ALERT
FEO FEED BACK?
NEWS?
SUBMISSIONS?
Read:
SUBMISSION
GUIDELINES

MOVIES
FEO AMANTE THEATER
My Short Films
LAST CALL

THE NIGHT MY MONSTER DIED
SCIENCE MOMENT
TOP TEN SCARY MOVIES
UNFAIR RACIAL CLICHÉ ALERT
RACIAL CLICHÉ RESPONSE
INTERVIEWS

STORY TIME

COMICS

CONS

HORRIBLE NEWS
Movies Kelly Parks Review by
Kelly Parks
Forbidden Planet poster
Bookmark and Share
SHOULD YOU?
TIP JAR
FORBIDDEN PLANET
NEWS
FORBIDDEN PLANET - 1956
USA Release: Aug! 22, 1956
MGM
Rated: N/A

Theremin music rocks!*

Okay, maybe it's an acquired taste, but if you were raised on horror and sci-fi movies there's gotta be a special place in your heart for that weird electronic scary music.

FORBIDDEN PLANET was directed by Fred M. Wilcox (Shadow in the Sky) and written by Cyril Hume (Tarzan's Savage Fury, Ransom), Allen Adler (PARASITE) and Irving Block (THE 30 FOOT BRIDE OF CANDY ROCK, THE SAGA OF THE VIKING WOMEN AND THEIR VOYAGE TO THE WATERS OF THE GREAT SEA SERPENT) and is based on Shakespeare's "The Tempest".

The story begins with the arrival at Altair (a star similar in size to our sun but quite a bit brighter) of a military starship from Earth. Commander John J. Adams (Leslie Nielsen: CREEPSHOW, DAY OF THE ANIMALS) and his men have spent a year in hyperspace to reach Altair in order to find out what happened to an ill-fated previous expedition. A group of scientists went to explore the Altair system and and were never heard from again.

Forbidden Saucer
WHEN OUR TECHNOLOGY IS ADVANCED ENOUGH, WE'LL HAVE FLYING SAUCERS

They go into orbit around Altair IV after the Commander and his close shipmate Doc Ostrow (Warren Stevens: CYBORG 2087, THE STUDENT BODY) pause to admire an arranged eclipse.

At first they can find no trace of the previous expedition. Then frighteningly powerful radar scans hit the ship followed by a radio message from Dr. Edward Morbius (Walter Pidgeon: THE NEPTUNE FACTOR) asking just who the hell they are. When Commander Adams delivers what he thinks will be welcome news, that he's there to rescue Morbius and his colleagues, Morbius just says thanks but no thanks, no need to land, goodbye! A little miffed at the lack of gratitude but determined to follow his orders, the Commander lands anyway.

The ship sets down in a desert surrounded by rocky hills. No sooner have the men left the ship, hardly having time to admire the green sky and two moons, than a vehicle approaches at a mad pace. The very 50's-futuristic looking ground car is driven by Robby the Robot (Marvin Miller - voice: THE DEADLY MANTIS, KING DINOSAUR) who politely asks Commander Adams and company to get in, please. Clearly AI (Artificial Intelligence) tech like this doesn't exist on Earth. Adams and Doc aren't certain what to make of Robby. The Commander, apparently just trying to make conversation, comments to Robby about Altair IV's atmosphere, noting the high oxygen content. Robby replies,"I rarely use it myself, sir. It promotes rust." Since Robby would have to be made out of advanced synthetics and little or no iron, this wasn't a Data-like misunderstanding. This was dry AI humor.

Robby delivers Adams, Doc and Lt. Jerry Farman (Jack Kelly: THE NIGHT HOLDS TERROR, CULT OF THE COBRA) to the house of Dr. Morbius (the only building on the whole planet). Morbius apologizes for being short with them before they landed, explaining that he's been a recluse for many years. He is more polite, but still tries to give them the bum's rush, basically saying, "See, I'm fine, everything's fine, now please leave."

Forbidden Altaira
IT WAS ONE LOUSY YEAR IN SPACE, BUT IT LOOKS LIKE IT'S GETTING BETTER!

The beautiful Altaira (Anne Francis: THE SATAN BUG, BRAINSTORM), Morbius' adult daughter, chooses that moment to enter the room. She's a sight for sore eyes to the lonely spacemen and is quickly cornered by the very horny Lt. Farman.

While Farman is busy bad-mouthing his friends to deflect Altaira's interest in them, Morbius explains that the rest of the members of his expedition are long dead. A mysterious, unseen creature came in the night and tore them limb from limb killing most of them. The few survivors attempted to lift off in the expedition's ship, but the ship was immediately vaporized. Only Morbius and his wife (who stayed behind because they loved this planet) were inexplicably immune. Morbius' wife died not long after, of natural causes.

Altair IV's bloody past and the combination of Morbius' refusal to leave and his dire warnings about the fate of the unwelcome space men if they don't leave puts Commander Adams in an awkward position. He decides he must consult his superiors back on Earth. Unfortunately this means building a communications facility, which will take several days.

Strange happenings begin immediately. Late at night an invisible intruder enters the ship and sabotages vital equipment. This results in Adams and Doc paying an unexpected visit to the Morbius house where they discover what Morbius was trying to keep secret. His house is built on the entrance to the underground ruins of a powerful race, called the Krell, that inhabited this planet 200,000 years ago. "Ruins" really isn't the right word, since everything built by the Krell is self-repairing and self-cleaning and all in perfect working order.

The unrepentedly arrogant Morbius (I love that guy!) explains that his exposure to a Krell device has dramatically boosted his intelligence and thus he alone is able to decide which of the Krell wonders humanity is ready for. He makes it clear that it'll be a short list as Morbius has a low opinion of his fellow man.

It was this brain boost that allowed Morbius to build Robby. The robot is tremendously powerful but Morbius was apparently an Asimov fan because Robby's programming includes Asimov's laws of robotics, making Robby incapable of harming any rationale being.

!!!SCIENCE MOMENT!!!:
The opening narration (have I mentioned that I hate narration?) tells us that the space age begins when man reaches the moon in the final decade of the 21st century. This movie was released in 1956, just thirteen years before we reached the moon and five years before Yuri Gagarin became the first man in space. As always, science fiction is rarely too imaginative. More often, it's not imaginative enough.

This is excellent, good old-fashioned sci-fi. The invisible monster (which you do get to see, eventually) gave me nightmares as a kid and still makes me nervous. And the explanation behind it, which also explains Morbius' immunity and the fate of the Krell, is elegant and insightful into human nature.

I give FORBIDDEN PLANET an easy five Shriek Girls.

Shriek GirlsShriek GirlsShriek GirlsShriek GirlsShriek Girls
This review copyright 2000 E.C.McMullen Jr.

FORBIDDEN PLANET
BLU-RAY STREAMING SOUNDTRACK POSTER
Bookmark and Share Forbidden Planet (1956) on IMDb

*
Theremin music certainly rocks, but FORBIDDEN PLANET didn't use Theremin music.

The score was created by Louis and Bebe Barron using their own electronic sound inventions. Louis and Bebe (birth name, Charlotte May Wind) are historically credited for writing the first electronic music for magnetic tape (1950), as well as the first entirely electronic score for a feature film, which is this movie. Louis and Bebe made their electronic sound invention based upon the cybernetic theories of MIT mathmatician, Norbert Wiener, which he wrote in his 1948 book, Cybernetics: Or, Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine.

Louis created his sound circuits based upon the equations found in Wiener's book.

And a tip of the hat to Don John Long!

Uncredited Robby the Robot designer, Robert Kinoshita, dies at the age of 100 in 2014.
Read RIP'n FOR ROBERT KINOSHITA.

Return to Movies

E.C. McMullen Jr. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

CURRENT REVIEWERS
E.C.MCMULLEN JR.
COME FOLLOW ME -
AMAZON
BLOG
DEVIANT ART
ECMJR - PORTFOLIO
FACEBOOK
IMDB
PANDORA
ROTTEN TOMATOES
STAGE32
TWITTER
YOUTUBE
KELLY PARKS
ON
IMDB
FACEBOOK
MYSPACE
TWITTER
YOUTUBE

 

BOOKS FROM
E.C. McMullen Jr.
WILLOW BLUE
Willow Blue
"'Willow Blue' will burrow under your skin and stay there long after you've put the book down."
- Jeffrey Reddick, Creator of
FINAL DESTINATION

PERPETUAL BULLET
Perpetual Bullet Paperback
"'Some People' ... may be the standout story in the book."
- John Grant, Infinityplus

IN OTHER BOOKS
E.C. McMullen Jr.'s

short story
CEDO LOOKED LIKE PEOPLE
in the anthology
FEAR THE REAPER
Fear The Reaper
"This Ray Bradbury-esque is one of the most memorable and one of the more original stories I've read in a long time."
- Amazon Review

HORROR 201: The Silver Scream
PAPERBACK

Horror 201: The Silver Scream
A tome of interviews with
RAY BRADBURY,
JOHN CARPENTER,
WES CRAVEN,
TOM HOLLAND,
E.C. McMULLEN Jr.,
ED NAHA,
GEORGE A. ROMERO, and many more.

Extensively quoted in
Phantasm Exhumed
PHANTASM EXHUMED
The Unauthorized Companion


Robert S. Rhine's
SATAN'S 3-RING CIRCUS OF HELL
Satan's 3-Ring Circus of Hell

Forward by
GAHAN WILSON,
FEO AMANTE.
Featuring comics by
WILLIAM STOUT,
HILARY BARTA,
STEVE BISSETTE,
SPAIN RODRIGUEZ,
FRANK DIETZ,
JIM SMITH,
TONE RODRIGUEZ,
FRANK FORTE,
ERIC PIGORS,
ALEX PARDEE,
MIKE SOSNOWSKI,
OMAHA PEREZ,
DAVID HARTMAN,
D.W. FRYDENDALL,
SHANNON WHEELER,
VINCENT WALLER,
JACOB HAIR,
NENAD GUCUNJA,
STEVEN MANNION,
NORMAN CABRERA,
and more!

ALSO
IN CINEMA
E.C. McMullen Jr.

Head Production Designer on
Mine Games
MINE GAMES
(Starring:
Alex Meraz, Briana Evigan)

Dept. head for
Special Effects Make-up
(SFX MUA) and Michael Madsen's stunt double on the movie
A Sierra Nevada Gunfight
A SIERRA NEVADA GUNFIGHT
(Starring:
Michael Madsen and John Savage).

Production Designer
Universal Dead
UNIVERSAL DEAD
(Starring:
Doug Jones, D.B. Sweeny, Gary Graham)

Art Director
The Crusader THE CRUSADER
(Starring Colin Cunningham, Gary Graham)

 

I will take you home...Feo Amante's Horror Home Page, Feo Amante's Horror Thriller, and feoamante.com are owned and
Copyright 1997 - 2017 by E.C.McMullen Jr.
FAIR USE - PRIVACY POLICY - OWNERSHIP - CONTACT
All images and text belong to E.C.McMullen Jr. unless otherwise noted.
All fiction stories belong to their individual authors.