Forbidden Planet (1956)

Forbidden Planet (1956) marked a watershed in science fiction film making. It’s matte-style background animation and CinemaScope photography actually won the film an Academy Award for special effects.

Not only that, it was also the first scifi movie to approach space exploration using hard science to predict how human beings would explore the Galaxy using FTL (faster-than-light) technology. When the ship C57D decelerates from supra-luminal flight, the crew enters ‘deceleration’ chambers that uses force fields that dampen the massive ‘G’ forces (gravity) that would crush the human body.

It has long been speculated that flying saucers use massive gravity fields to bend and warp space-time for propulsion. And one can’t help but notice that the ship utilizes the classic saucer ‘UFO’ design.

Did the film makers get ‘technical’ help from outside sources? After all it was the 1950s, Cold War ‘paranoia’ and anxiety was reaching new heights and UFO activity was at an all-time high.

You be the judges!

Forbidden Planet Trailer


Forbidden Planet – Alien

A little heresy here, but fun. The editor monkeyed with the music though.

Forbidden Planet – The Short Version

As you obviously note, many famous actors and actress(es) were in this production. I’m not sure if this movie launched their careers, but the movie itself was a serious production, not a tongue-in-cheek farce like later scifi films were.

And many thanks to lotusland for the idea to post these clips!


4 responses

  1. It’s hard to believe that Leslie Nielson was a sex figure back in the day, especially with 1950s hottie Anne Francis!

    It’s been said that his character was the model for James T. Kirk!

    But that’s just a rumor! ;-P

  2. Hi dad2059…

    Truly a great film and no matter how many times I’ve watched it over the years it still has the same great appeal. : )

    Nielson and surprisingly many others of the cast are still alive. I’ll provide a Wiki link dedicated to the film. You can click on the actors names and it will alert you as to whether they have passed from this plane or not.

    Thanks for both featuring and feating this great film.

    I thought I’d mention something about saucer shaped craft in an atmospheric environment; ie., they are highly unstable and have a tendency to wobble. It’s not an efficient design for atmospheric travel especially when encountering turbulence. So the saucers being witnessed by folks are evidently nullifying the effects of our atmosphere at the boundary layer of their craft to the airflow, since you don’t notice the aforementioned wobble effect except in hoax saucer craft filmings.

    The Russians developed a supersonic underwater torpedo some time back. Chinese subs are currently arming themselves with the Shkval or “Squall” .

    It works on the same principal of super-cavitation; millions of micro bubbles forming around a submerged propeller or in the Shkval’s case it’s nose an the lead portion of it’s circumference allowing it break the resistive barrier of water to a submerged object and to scoot through the mediuim as if it were coated with teflon at supersonic speeds. In a propellers case you lose efficiency and thrust, but in the torpedo’s case it lowers drag relative to the water almost to zero.

    Alleged alien USO’s (Unindentified Submersible Objects) have been reported traveling through the oceans submerged at incredible speeds.

    My point is in addition to advanced propulsion systems that saucer craft and even the cigar shaped mother ships are also employing a technique similar to the aforementioned torpedo technology to create a hyper-cavitated air envelope around itself so moving through our atmosphere is almost a frictionless process as in the Shkval’s case. This might be done with a hull induced corona discharge of high intensity creating a vacuum like space between the craft and out atmosphere allowing them scoot friction free through the medium.

    Anyway some thoughts of my own concerning saucers, USO’s, and even a current technology that just might be used against our US vessels if war should break out. There is no known countermeasure against the Shkval torpedo at this time other than reincarnation… : |

    Carl Nemo **==

  3. Dad2059 —

    Thanks for posting this. One of my all time favorites, up there with The Day the Earth Stood Still.

    Naturally, there’s lots of trivia out there about this one. The first release was essentially a rough cut because the first audience test went over so well they rushed it out the door. I’m wondering how much better it would have looked if they’d spent a little more time on it. Oddly, Earl Holliman, who played the cook, simply hated the movie. It’s a mystery to me why.

    I think David Gerrold was the first to point out the similarity between Forbidden Planet and Star Trek. The only thing missing from Star Trek is a robot, probably because a really good one would have been too expensive.

    If that sounds like I’m dissing the robot in Lost in Space, well … Robbie in my mind will always be the benchmark for that sort of thing.

  4. The Highwayman | Reply

    I’ve never seen this show, before, but there are a lot of similarities with other and later shows. I thought that saucer craft were used in earlier films, but maybe I’m wrong.

    The robot was used in one of the “Lost In Space” episodes, alongside their own. Carl’s Wiki link provided some interesting background on the influence the film had on Gene Roddenberry.

    Leslie Nielson was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, only 40 minutes drive from my place. He found his niche in comedy, I believe. He was a riot in “Airplane” and “The Naked Gun” series. His brother, Erik Nielson, was Deputy Prime Minister under Mulroney. (I don’t hold that against Leslie, though!)

    A lot of talented folk come from Saskatchewan… Colin James, Art Linkletter, Peter Gzowski, John Vernon, The Highwayman…


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