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The Day the Earth Stood Still


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Product Details

  • Actors: Michael Rennie, Patricia Neal, Hugh Marlowe, Lock Martin, Frances Bavier
  • Directors: Robert Wise
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Closed-captioned, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby TrueHD), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: G (General Audience)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: March 4, 2003
  • Run Time: 92 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (840 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005JKFR
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,843 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Day the Earth Stood Still" on IMDb

Editorial Reviews

The Day The Earth Stood Still depicts the arrival of an alien dignitary, Klaatu (Michael Rennie), who has come to earth with his deadly robot, Gort (Lock Martin), to deliver the message that earthlings must stop warring among themselves--or else. After being shot at by military guards, Klaatu is brought to a Washington, D.C. hospital, where he begs a sympathetic but frank Major White (Robert Osterloh) to gather all the world's leaders so he can tell them more specifically what he has come to warn them about. Losing patience, Klaatu slips into the human world, adapting a false identity and living at a boarding house where he meets a smart woman with a conscience and her inquisitive son. Both mother and son soon find themselves embroiled in the complex mystery of Klaatu, his message and the government's witch hunt for the alien.

DISC INFORMATION
It is a double-sided disc:

Side 1:
*Commentary by Robert Wise and Nicolas Meyer
*Movie Tone news of the premiere events of 1951
*Theatrical trailer

Side 2:
*Making The Earth Stand Still documentary
*Restoration comparison
*6 Still galleries
*Trailers: Journey to the Center of the Earth, & One Million Years B.C.

Customer Reviews

This has to be one of the best science fiction movies ever made.
Richard Spiegelman
This thoughtful and intelligent film is even more relevant today than when it was made.
SwellBooks
This is a great movie for its time , the special effects for 1951 were good as well .
Ronald Dudley

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

440 of 455 people found the following review helpful By Michael G. Brennan on May 29, 2003
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Watching this recently, it amazed me how little action there is in this movie, and yet it remains as captivating and enthralling as ever. There are none of the set pieces we have come to expect in modern genre films: no explosions, no gory deaths, one small chase scene. Tension is developed through character development and the wonderful performances of Patricia Neal and Michael Rennie, with some wonderful supporting work from Sam Jaffe and Frances Bavier (Mayberry's Aunt Bea!)
There are very few special effects: the odd tank disappears in a glow of light, but other than that, this is a film driven by character development. Taut direction by Robert Wise, straightforward writing from Edmund North and impressive cinematography by Leo Tower create an intelligent, literate, adult science fiction film that appeals to all ages.
Special mention must be made of Bernard Herrmann's haunting score. One of the first film scores to use Leon Theremin's eerie and eponymous electronic instrument, which unfortunately became a genre cliché, the music adds immeasurably to the tense and unsettling atmosphere.
Modern audiences may find the film's message heavy handed and obvious, relying on 1950's atomic paranoia and the absolute power it brought. In fact, Klaatu's proffered peaceful solution borders on totalianarianism. But these are minor considerations considering this is a simple story stunningly told.
The DVD contains many interesting extras of interest to film buffs and collectors, including a shooting script, extended discussions on the evolution of the film from idea to release, and an odd look at the people fascinated with collecting 1950's sci-fi film props and paraphernalia.
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278 of 296 people found the following review helpful By stryper on December 5, 2008
Format: DVD
First and foremost, this is a review for the 1951, black and white, 1.33:1 aspect ratio, 2-disc, special edition DVD and NOT for the remake (Gort! Keanu barada nikto :)

Okay so here's the lowdown; as I now have both this new edition and the original single, flipper disc, version, and having watched all of the bonus features on the new 2-disc set, I can tell you this: keep the old disc!

Why, because the 73 plus minute, making of, on the original disc is gone, replaced with a new 23 minute fluff piece that only skims the surface of the story, of the making of this film.

Gone are the lengthy on camera interviews with the producer, director and female lead, replaced instead with film historian's inane babble, with the odd snippet of voice recordings of the director and producer, taken from the 73 plus minutes, making of, from the original disc (without the on camera picture).

Also gone, is the very interesting, "Collectors", segment, tacked onto the end of the original making of, which had several prominent collectors showing off such treasures as the original flying saucer model and Gort statue, used in the actual film, with anecdotes about the film, and where the props they now owned, had ended up after the filming.

As for the extra stuff added to the 2-disc set, nothing is worth the non-inclusion of the original making of from the first disc (most of the new stuff has nothing to do with the film, but instead conveys the political tensions of the world at that time, which, although slightly of interest, is not worth upgrading for).
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170 of 187 people found the following review helpful By Gary F. Taylor HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 16, 2002
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
In many respects THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL is a very dated film. Obviously a comment on Cold War paranoias, it has little in the way of special effects or high-class production values, Edmund H. North's script is surprisingly talky, and it captures the very clunky look of late-1940s/early-1950s America to an uncomfortable degree. Certainly few involved in the project took it very seriously--even leading lady Patricia Neal admitted that she and Michael Rennie had tremendous difficulty keeping straight faces while spouting "Gort! Klaatu barada nikto!" But strangely, against all the odds, the film continues to speak, capturing the imagination of each new generation that sees it.

The film's enduring power seems to arise from its very simplicity, which lifts the story of a visitor from outer space from mere sci-fi pulp to the level of a parable. As frequently noted, the film contains significant religious symbolism. It is easy to read the visitor as Christ, the woman who befriends him as Mary Magdalene, the man who betrays him as Judas, and the message the visitor brings as both call to repentance and opportunity for redemption--and whatever one's actual religious beliefs, the film taps into these archetypes to create a very effective modern morality tale that works on several levels. At the same time, the film makes a surprisingly acid comment on American and international politics, small minded bigotry, and media hysteria that still rings true today. And the film has surprising visual power.
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WHY ARE THOSE WIRES STILL THERE?
There are wires because "Gort" the robot was played by Lock Martin, a man with a real case of "giantism". Along with this condition comes a less then average amount of strength. He really could not carry or hold Patricia Neal, therefore she was was held up by wires during that... Read More
Jan 7, 2009 by Primogen |  See all 12 posts
Odd that the two main actors are not listed
This is a common, annoying "feature" of Amazon. For many films, they seem to have an alphabetical list of actors, and just list the first few, regardless of whether they play a major role or not. With this title, for example, they only go as far as actors whose last name starts with...
Dec 2, 2008 by Patrick F. Conolly |  See all 5 posts
Broken Extras
I currently have this disc from the library, and the interactive theremin game does work on my Panasonic player. Perhaps you need to do a firmware update on your machine?
Apr 1, 2014 by TopFlight |  See all 4 posts
Fullscreen or Widescreen?
Hello There,

The IMDb lists the original aspect ratio as being 1.37 :1. So as near as I can make out, it wasn't filmed in a widescreen format.

Widescreen movies didn't really come into their own until 1953 or so. There were some widescreen movies done in the late 20's and early 30's, but with... Read More
Oct 17, 2008 by General Malaise |  See all 14 posts
Region free?
The information Amazon lists on this DVD says it is Region 1
Feb 4, 2009 by Amazon Customer |  See all 2 posts
Klaatu's words Be the first to reply
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