Everyone loves certain types of movies. One of my favorites is the B-rated vintage sci-fi classics. Most are in black and white. Here is a list of my top 10 all-time favorites with recaps.
The Day the Earth Stood Still
I enjoy the original from 1951 and watch it every time I find it on television.
The story warns against the nuclear arms race and is interesting in its own right. A space ship lands in Washington D.C. and no one seems to know what to do with it. Klaatu comes out and is tested and interrogated. He escapes and lives in a bed and breakfast learning about humans. His purpose is to save the earth but most humans, afraid of him, are intent on destroying him and his ship.
Michael Renne plays Klaatu and Patricia Neal is Helen Benson.
This is from 1951 and several others by the same title were also later produced. This is considered the first monster film, but I see it more as science fiction. A UFO lands on the North Pole and air force crews are sent to investigate. In the 1950s it was considered scary and still can make you shudder but a great classic not to be missed.
Margaret Sheridan plays Nikki Nicholson and Paul Frees is Dr. Vorhees.
I recently watched the original from 1958 and the remake from 1988 and still love the original. Steve McQueen stars as Steve Andrews and Aneta Corsault is Jane Martin. Teens see something come from the sky. They soon find the blob. The blob just devours people and becomes larger. No one believes them however, especially the police. So they must come together to save the world. A true classic sci-fi movie.
It Came From Outer Space
This 1953 classic was made in 3-D originally but I do not believe I have ever seen it that way. Two people view what they believe is a fireball fall to earth. But, instead it is an alien starship. Soon people in the town disappear. When they return they are not quite the same. Quite enjoyable.
This stars Richard Carlson as John Putnam and Barbara Rush as Ellen Fields.
War of the Worlds
This was made into a movie 1953. Many people have heard of the HG Wells radio production scaring a nation, but I am not sure how many know it was made into a movie?
Earth is invaded by Martians. Guns and tanks are used to defeat the aliens but cannot. Panic sweeps around the world as landmarks across the world are destroyed.
Gene Barry stars as Dr. Clayton Forrester and Ann Robinson is Sylvia Van Buren. It actually is kind of scary.
Invasion of the Body Snatchers
I enjoy the 1956 version but this movie has also had lots of remakes. Giant sea pods come to earth and takeover bodies. The people look the same but have no emotion. It happens when you sleep so the key is to stay awake. A fabulous sci-fi flick that was quite terrifying for the 1950s. I just love it.
Stars Kevin McCarthy as Dr. Miles Bennell and Whit Bissell as Dr. Hill.
The Last Man on Earth
I have to admit this 1964 movie scared me at first. I suppose this could be considered an early horror film but I always categorize it as sci-fi.
It stars Vincent Price who is the last man on earth. Due to a plague everyone has been killed off. Zombies invade at night and Price, who plays Dr. Robert Morgan, must defend himself. Morgan has survived because of some immunity he acquired years early.
Creature from the Black Lagoon
This seems to be on television a lot. At least, I see it a lot, but it is still fun to watch.
This 1954 movie features a group traveling the Amazon in search of pre-historic fossils. They find something more but to their surprise the creature falls in love with crew member Kay Lawrence played by Julia Adams. He continually attempts to steal her for himself. But, Dr. David Reed played by Richard Carlson has other ideas.
Do you like ants? What about huge mutant ants?
They come alive following a nuclear explosion in the dessert but soon they escape to the city of Los Angeles. I don’t think it is scary but it is one of the better acting sci-fi early movies.
Stars James Whitmore as Sgt. Ben Peterson, Leonard Nimoy as a staff sergeant, James Arness as Robert Graham and Joan Weldon as Dr. Patricia Medford.
Village of the Damned
This is from 1960 and is kind of creepy. Every member of the town of Midwich. England falls asleep for several hours. They wake up as mysteriously as they fell asleep but soon all the woman are pregnant. They all give birth to blonde children with penetrating eyes. The children grow fast and soon take over the city and plan on taking over the earth.
This stars George Sanders as Gordon Zellaby and Barbara Shelley as Anthea Zellaby.
These are my top 10 but there are many out there. Any of these would make for a great movie night get together for the family or a party event. Forget the new movies, watch some classics.