‘This Island Earth’ (B-Movie Review) – Part One (1955)

And now, another amazing B-movie review for your reading pleasure! 🙂

This week’s victim movie is This Island Earth from 1955.

In this movie, we meet our protagonist, Dr. Cal Meacham, in mid-flight as he pilots a plane. The plane goes a bit out of control, but for some reason, Meacham doesn’t crash, but the plane floats gently onto a runway while glowing green and making an awful high-pitched noise.

Image via Just Screenshots.

This, in itself, is very interesting. But they get even more so when Meacham discovers that Amazon someone has delivered a peculiar package. Instead of the parts he ordered, he has a box full of high-tech Legos that he’s supposed to construct into a device called an “interocitor.” At which point, Meacham says, “Yeah, right. What the hell?”

Somehow Meacham and his handy assistant, Joe, put this thing together. Among other things, it appears to include an early model of a semiconductor. And, before you can say “Hewlett Packard,” the device is all in one piece.

Image via TV Tropes.

It even has a triangular viewscreen, like something you’d see on the original Star Trek.

It is in this viewscreen that we meet a mysterious man named Exeter, who either has a seriously receding hairline or the tallest forehead ever.

According to Exeter, Meacham has passed the test and is now cleared to work for him on his “special project.” Despite the fact that Meacham never applied for the job, let alone expected to be tested for one, Exeter convinces Meacham that he needs him by shamelessly flattering him emphasizing his great intelligence and skill. Meacham is naturally bamboozled intrigued.

So, off he goes, in a glowing green auto-piloted plane that makes that terrible whiny noise. It takes him away to another world altogether—the state of Georgia. (The one in the U.S.A.) And, before you can say “peach cobbler,” he’s joined a whole slew of top scientists in a great big house in the middle of nowhere. There is, of course, The Girl—another scientist—my, how egalitarian of them. Well, they did need a romantic interest. So … her name is Ruth, and she can be a bit ruthless with Meacham. At least, at first. Guess she’s still kinda pissed about the hickey he gave her at the last international symposium. Okay, I made that part up.

Image via Park Circus.

Oh, and one of the other Top Scientists is the Professor. As in the Professor from Gilligan’s Island. He enjoys the use of Exeter and the Big-Heads’ the fully-equipped labs that Exeter and his Merry Band of Big-Headed Folk have provided, but something seems amiss. Especially since there isn’t a single coconut to be found in Georgia.

It’s the Professor, Mary Ann, and … the rest. 🙂

At some point, Meacham, Ruth, and the Professor (whose name is Steve Carlson, but that doesn’t matter) get the hell out of there leave in a hurry. But they’re attacked and Carlson is killed, so I’m not sure why they bothered to name the character. (Roy Hinkley must have had a helluva an agent.) In any case, Meacham and Ruth try to escape by plane. And as the laboratory/mansion is destroyed, the plane is hijacked by aliens. Caught in the B-movie version of a tractor beam, the plane is forced into the confines of a flying saucer.

Part Two coming up next week! 🙂

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4 Responses to ‘This Island Earth’ (B-Movie Review) – Part One (1955)

  1. moviefanman says:

    I’m not normally into Science Fiction films, but this one was pretty good I have to say. That it has a pre Gilligan’s Island Russell “The Professor” Johnson is pretty cool too. Rex Reason had a brother who also acted, Rhodes Reason (I kid not) , but his career was not as prolific as Rex’s, but he did receive cult status for his work in the show The Time Tunnel.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Whoa – that Exeter guy really does have a tall forehead.

    I love the language of some of these movie posters: “An Outlaw Planet Gone Mad!” Who writes this fabulous stuff?

    Liked by 2 people

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