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Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
The seed is planted…….terror grows
Philips Kaufman

Jack Finney – Novel

Starring – Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum, Veronica Cartwright, Leonard Nimoy, Art Hindle, Lelia Goldoni, Kevin McCarthy, Don Siegel, Tom Luddy, Stan Ritchie, David Fisher, Tom Dahlgren, Garry Goodrow, Jerry Walter

Review by The _Void

Excellent take on a brilliant story,
Phillip Kaufman’s adaptation of Jack Finney’s classic novel had a lot to live up to after the classic 1956 take on it – and I think it lived up to expectations. Though not as great as the more politically orientated original, Kaufman’s film is still a lesson in suspense and the central story has lost none of the intrigue that it captured in the original. The story follows an alien life form that has come from outer space and taken residence here on earth. Not content with living in sibilance with humans, the aliens become ‘body snatchers’ and make duplications of people while they’re sleeping. These duplicates take the original host’s place and are everything their originals were, only all forms of emotion vanish. Our story takes focus on Martin and Elizabeth, two workers at the US Health Department. After taking home a supposedly new type of flower, Elizabeth finds her boyfriend acting strangely and later discovers that she’s not the only one with relatives who aren’t quite themselves…

This film works because of a constant sense of paranoia. In the 1950’s, this was tied in with the then ‘reds under the beds’ idea of communism spreading through capitalist America. This film seems to have dispensed with that idea, which gives way to more opportunity for sci-fi horror, which is more than welcome in my opinion. The special effects on display are bold and lavish, and therefore exciting to watch. They are a little hokey, but still not bad at all – the parts where you see the alien duplicate forming are fantastically gruesome, and also rather frightening.

The whole idea of the film is frightening, even in spite of the fact that it ever happening is very unlikely. The idea that an alien race can take over almost an entire city in one night, and without anyone realising it, is not one that I’d like to have if I was a paranoid conspiracy theorist! Then there’s the notion that they’ll get you if you sleep as it’s like one man in the film says…”gotta sleep sometime”.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers is also notable for featuring a great cast, which not only includes the excellent Donald Sutherland and the beautiful Brooke Shields, but also Jeff Goldblum (in his first of two successfully good remakes) and Leonard Nimoy, a.k.a. Captain Spock from Star Trek. Also watch out for cameos from original Invasion of the Body Snatchers director Don Siegel and said film’s star.

Review by Theo Robertson

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)

Darker Bleaker And Probably Better Than The Original,
I saw the original version a few nights ago and last night I saw 1978 remake of INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS. I thought the remake had the edge over the original. What made it better was the dark, bleak oppressive atmosphere of utter paranoia helped a lot by the synthesiser heartbeat on the soundtrack and the night filming. The remake also contains one of the most disturbing images I’ve ever seen with that ” Dog “. If you’ve seen the movie you’ll remember that bit no matter how hard you’ll want to forget it.

I saw the original last week, watched QUATERMASS 2 yesterday morning and saw the INVASION OF THE BODYSNATCHERS remake last night. I’ve also seen the rather weak 1993 BODYSNATCHERS and the poor PUPPETMASTERS so I think I’m qualified to say this is the best film version dealing with the theme of humans getting taken over.

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70s Films

A tour through the great and not so great films of the seventies The seventies saw a huge change in styles and genres from the advent of the slasher horror movies like Halloween and the blockbuster summers films started by Jaws. More...

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