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The Space Children [Blu-ray]

4.0 out of 5 stars 44 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

An alien brain tells the children of scientists to sabotage the space launch of a hydrogen bomb.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Michel Ray, Jackie Coogan, Ty Hardin, Russell Johnson, Peggy Webber
  • Directors: Jack Arnold
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Black & White, NTSC, Original recording remastered, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Olive Films
  • DVD Release Date: June 19, 2012
  • Run Time: 69 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007PXYXEE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,068 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Space Children [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A. Gammill VINE VOICE on June 20, 2012
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
If you're read some the other reviews here, you may notice I was intially a bit skeptical of Olive Films, having not been familiar with them until now. Well, I'm happy to report that the company (actually a part of Paramount, it turns out) did a fine job with this mostly-forgotten Jack Arnold drive-in sci-fi film. While it is true that a 50+ year old low-budget film, even in 1080p, will never have the shine of a recent film shot in high definition, The Space Children is, for the most part, remarkably clear.

The film itself concerns an alien being taking possession of the children of some rocket scientists. While the film's promotional materials played up the otherworldly menace, the story itself is actually fairly subdued. This is science fiction that favors talking over action, and although there are some nifty effects, they are sparingly used. The film's anti-war message places it in the company of The Day the Earth Stood Still (Special Edition) [Blu-ray] rather than the typical alien-invasion films of the period.

As the title of the review states, this is a "bare bones" video release. All you get is the movie. Which is a shame, because there is a great theatrical trailer that can be easily found on the internet. And director Jack Arnold was a generally well-liked and prolific genre filmmaker, so a featurette or even trailers from his other films would have been a nice touch. But as someone who collects and adores films of this type, I consider it a minor miracle that a Blu-ray release of "The Space Children" ever saw the light of day. So for that, I am grateful. And I'm most satisfied to see that Olive Films is a company that cares about these old films.
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Format: DVD
Producer William Alland and Director Jack Arnold were responsible for some of the best and most innovative Science Fiction films of the fifties. Olive Films has released an underrated gem which happens to be Arnold's Sci-Fi swan song , 1958's 'THE SPACE CHILDREN' into the digital age. A beautiful anti war statement made when this type of film was few and far between at that time, it emerges as Arnold's most personal film. Never has his use of landscapes been more realized. Just as he used the desert as his tableau in 'IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE'-1953 and 'TARANTULA'-1956 , he surpasses his water and underground cavern settings of his masterpiece 'THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON'-1954 by placing his alien visitor in a cave within walking distance of the ocean causing the setting to be calm yet menacing in each frame brilliantly realized by photographer Ernest Laszlo. The performances by the children are excellent and even the adults are shown in different lights by being shown the errors of their ways. The icing on the cake is the eerie music score by Van Cleve who also graced Director Eugene Lourie's 'THE COLOSSUS OF NEW YORK' the same year. It emerges as a poignant children's fable predating the menacing alien-invasion-by-children thriller Director Wolf Rilla's 'VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED'-1960 and its sequel, Director Anton Leader's 'CHILDREN OF THE DAMNED'-1963. The transfer is stunning with a beautiful 1.85 transfer which is just as good as the BLU-RAY release and has an original trailer as its only extra. Highly recommended and kudos once again to Olive Films for excavating this underrated film to Sci-Fi Fans of all ages.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
THE STORY: America is developing an orbiting hydrogen weapons platform as a means of leveling the playing field with other countries (friendly & foreign) who are working on the same idea. Project technicians & their families are sequestered at a remote seaside location adjacent to the rocket facility until the launch is complete. Shortly after arriving, the various scientists' young children witness a strange phenomenon near the ocean's shore - one the adults apparently do not see. Investigating along a rocky coastline the kids discover a glowing brain/blob thing, which quickly takes them over. Under its guidance the tykes work to sabotage the upcoming missile launch. What is the alien intelligence's true intention? Will it succeed?

THOUGHTS: Interesting sort-of variation on The Village of The Damned, only THE SPACE CHILDREN was actually released two years before DAMNED was. The kids are all pretty good, though the producer & director wisely let the most talented ones have the bigger parts. Michel Ray gets the lion's share of dialogue as the leader of the group. His younger brother is played by Johnny Crawford, (best known for his role as Chuck Conners' young son Mark McCain on TV's "The Rifleman"). Sandy Descher plays the kids' second in command. (Just four years earlier she cemented her status in sci-fi iconography as the little girl who wanders the desert in a state of shock, before her big freak out scene in Warner's outstanding 1954 big bug classic THEM!) Among the adult players in the small cast are Jackie Coogan (Uncle Fester from TV's "Addams' Family"), and a brief turn by Russell Johnson (the Professor on "Gilligan's Island"), playing against type as the drunken, abusive step-father to one of the kids.
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