"The Day the Earth Stood Still"

by MediaPhile@evpl on Wednesday, December 17 2008, 4:04pm. Viewed 942 times.

day the earth stood still

I must have watched the 1951 Robert Wise sci-fi classic "The Day the Earth Stood Still" 10 times as a child.  It was one of my all time favorite movies.  So as soon as the first ad for the remake flashed on TV, I was hooked.  Last weekend I forked over my $6 for the Sunday morning matinee and settled into sci-fi Paradise.  My day turned out to involve a double feature -- the remake in the morning at the theater, followed by the original later that day at home.

Despite the critics' sneers, I found that the remake held its own.  It was fast-paced, exciting, and visually breathtaking and, of course, starred Keanu Reeves (and Jennifer Connelly). I expected the original black and white version to look and seem woefully dated, but it too holds up even today.

I had joked ahead of time about Keanu being perfect for the role of an emotionless alien -- and he was.  But when watching the original, I noticed that Michael Rennie as an alien was even more robotic than Keanu -- he never wavered from his threatening message about the earth's possible fate.  Keanu the Alien actually showed some emotion as he began to like and understand the humans.

The original was based on a novella by sci-fi writer Harry Bates and was a reaction to the atomic bomb.  The remake plays out against the crises of global warming and permanent war.  Both, of course, feature an alien sent to warn Man of imminent destruction in the absence of profound lifestyle changes.

So grit your teeth, prepare to be preached to just a little, and watch the remake.  By the way, one of the first structures to bite the dust is a football stadium.

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Comments (8)

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on Thursday, December 18 2008, 11:14am

My grandparents knew Robert Wise!  He went to Franklin College.  A bit of Branigin trivia!

this.is.not.here@evpl wrote
on Thursday, December 18 2008, 5:23pm

There are 2 sci fi movies that should never have had remakes.  They are Invasion of the Body Snatchers, and The Day the Earth Stood Still.  

No one can match the interchange between Michael Rennie and Sam Jaffee:  Michael Rennie:  "I am Klaatu"  Sam Jaffee: "....there are several thousand questions I'd like to ask you".  I just get chills from that.

and of course "Klaatu barada nikto".  

on Friday, December 19 2008, 7:52am

My dear Beatles friend....you need to go watch the remake of The Day.  I agree with you on the Body Snatchers though.

this.is.not.here@evpl wrote
on Friday, December 19 2008, 11:00am

I will probably see it in Indy this weekend.  My hubby has already seen it.  ....and of course pronounced it N.B.  (not believable).  

on Friday, December 19 2008, 11:19am

but it's Keanu!  Have fun this weekend.

gawell@evpl wrote
on Friday, December 19 2008, 4:31pm

The best line in the movie and scenes were from the in initial interrogation and escape.

"You should let me go."

All I can say is , "Et tu Klaatu."

plainjayne wrote
on Thursday, May 21 2009, 12:36pm

just okay  !!!!!!

bagofcorn wrote
on Wednesday, July 8 2009, 7:29pm

Wow - really? I kind of refused to see the remake - the original is so awesome - and the theramin music is so creepy!