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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 15 February 2011
It! The Terror From Beyond Space

"It" rightly gets the kudos "it" deserves these days.

It's the future, 1973, and the first manned expedition to Mars is marooned. When a rescue team finally reach the stricken ship they find only one survivor; the leader, Col. Edward Carruthers. He claims that an alien life form killed his crew but this is met with scepticism as Carruthers tells the story.......

Pretty much forgotten until Ridley Scott's enormously successful Alien in 1979 caused ripples on account of plot similarity, It! The Terror from Beyond Space now rightfully sits with the best of the sci-fi schlockers from the 50s. Sure it's hokey and the old man in the rubber suit issue is hardly the work of cinematic genius, but its science heart and its claustrophobic construction more than make up for budgetary restrictions. Set on board a classic V-2 vertical type rocket ship, Edward L. Cahn's film benefits from having Jerome Bixby on pen duties. Bixby's credentials boasts the likes of Star Trek, The Twilight Zone and Fantastic Voyage, so the writing here was in good hands. For sure it's not exactly breaking new ground with its basic plot, but it has a little more to offer than at first seems.

As for the titular creature itself? Well it proudly displays all of the limitations of its bargain-basement budget. Played by Ray "Crash" Corrigan, it's a lumbering, grunting piggy type alien that we get to see too much of during the second half of the movie. But with Kenneth Peach's toned down black & white photography at work, the creature remains a potent character as it stalks its prey around the metallic interiors of the ship. The cast are the usual assemblage of B movie performers, with Marshall Thompson and Shirley Patterson putting in a good shift. While Grant Whytock in the editing department deserves a mention for keeping the film free of pointless filler.

A taut and creepy little shocker that is a must see for anyone interested in the glorious days of the sci-fi schlocker and creaky creature feature. 8/10

The Monster That Challenged The World

Instant TERROR......just add water!

An earthquake out in the Salton Sea awakens the creeping dread, gigantic vampire water snails are on the loose and they are hungry for human fluid!.

Just about the right side of good, The Monster Who Challenge The World holds up well because of it's well constructed creatures and a bit of care and attention to the boffin discussions. Far too many 50s creature features just used a basic premise of creatures obliterating mankind because they were in an odd mood, but much like The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms, this picture at least takes time to give us a bit of a nature heartbeat to help us understand the methods of a mollusc, and that alone should be applauded, learn while we have fun so to speak. The cast ooze B-movie standards, and that is in no way a bad thing here, whilst the Catalina Island locale sequences are pretty nifty to help salt the beef as it were!

Good honest fun that isn't short on creepiness, and top marks to the makers for introducing a very ingenious creature to a truly wonderful genre. 6/10
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VINE VOICEon 5 August 2005
We get the classic 50's sci-fi introductory narration, a story of how the Salton Sea (southern California) was formed, and the possibility that giant creatures may have lived there at one time.
Then we switch to present day laboratory where they measure an earth quake. Mean while the navy is experimenting with Parachutes over the Salton Sea. The tester lands on the water and before the retrieval crew can get there he disappears. Looks like the retrieval crew is about to disappear.
From here all the standard situation to a creature/s unknown threaten to wipe out mankind. Don't let the thread distract from the parallel falling in love story between John (Tim Holt) and Gail (Audrey Dalton).
One of the redeeming features of this movie is the rebellious teenager that does not listen to her mother and gets sucked dry.
One disappointment is that with all the devices at their disposal they did not use a flamethrower.
The Monster/s looked like they took the old Japanese "Rodan" caterpillar and gave it a snail shell.
An added plus is noticing that they packed this film with many popular "B" actors come from old Charlie Chan movies. And the head scientist is Hans Conried the voice of Snidely Whiplash in "The Bullwinkle Show" (1961)
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VINE VOICEon 9 September 2007
There are some terrific titles in the budget MGM Midnite Movies series and this is a good one.

Monster, set in and around the Salton Sea (an accidentally-created man-made salt water lake in California -thank you Wikipaedia), is (for the time) a well-made giant snails movie, is quite convincing and actually made me jump when a monster appeared from a direction I wasn't expecting.

Does 'It' sound familiar to you? An unstoppable monster hides on board a spaceship in the air ducts and sets about killing the crew. No, I didn't think so either. So this alien... Anyway, at 69 minutes it does an efficient entertaining job.

Just one other thing though. Set fifteen years in the future (1973) from when it was filmed (1958), everyone on board the space ship smokes, and the women cook and serve the men their meals, make sandwiches, and pour the coffee, but are allowed to do an autopsy, fix wounds and scream a lot. There is also keep an ample supply of guns on board though I couldn't figure out why unless they were expecting a monster to get on board. And they have artificial gravity which we all know is really to keep the movie's budget down.

No matter, these two black and white movies are good old-fashioned monster fun.
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on 22 March 2010
Typical Midnite Movie stuff, way out!! I love these old B movies and have quite a collection now. Tim Holt (normally a cowboy with Chito) fights his way underwater through a veritable horde of vampire snails..the garden will never look the same again!!
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on 8 November 2012
"IT" played hell on my psyche as a young boy. I was so keen and energetic watching the Mercury, Gemini and then Apollo astronauts re-define space travel. At the same time, I could NOT get enough of the fifties sci-fi movies that were just reaching television. "IT" provided justification for a deep concern I held as a lad. What if we discovered monsters in our space travels?
And they got onboard!
And they wanted to kill us!
Well "IT" proved my fears well founded.
Yes, it is assuredly dated today by sci-fi standards but they were breaking ground back then. Budgets, keep in mind, became quite limited when producers discovered that audiences would pay to see "limited" films as eagerly as they would blockbusters like "Forbidden Planet".
That said, "It" is a perfect rainy Sunday afternoon popcorn movie that all will love for it's simple charms. Alien precursor? Of course it is.

"Monster" is too cute for words. Murderous caterpillars fought with all sincerity.
It's impossible not to love this movie considering how serious it was produced.
Acting is all above par given the script.

Both movies will be absolutely cherished by your children.
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on 22 May 2013
My Wife is more into these old films than I am... but I must admit that I was so intrigued by other peoples comments about "IT" being the inspiration for "Alien", that I felt compelled to watch it.

I think they are right - despite the early clumsy effects and obvious "human in a costume", you can still feel the suspense and I certainly understand where "Alien" may have come from.

To be honest "Monster" isn't a bad film either with quite a good plot overall... so to get BOTH of these films in a box set for only just over £4 (delivered from USA by Moviemars) is really quite remarkable.

Just one thing... It should be obvious because it's region 1 - but for those of you who (like me), convert all their dvd's to MKV files to play through media players... be aware that this is an NTSC standard running 29.97fps, so you might have to tweak your settings when playing the file back.

Thanks... David
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on 7 May 2016
This limited edition reg free dvd of this monster movie from 1957 has come out well first let me say the movie is not as good as i remember it with a good monster that is not seen as much as it should have been and a stupid kid that is in far to much.The story a monster comes out of the sea and the navy find one of its giant eggs were they take it back to there lab were you no what is going to happen next.On the extra side there is nothing the print is okay has a few tram lines here and there but nothing to bad.So to sum up not a bad disc but a trailer would have been nice
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on 27 November 2014
Memories were made of these I was 15 when I first saw these movies classics in those days even more today
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on 16 April 2015
'It', the original Alien. I saw this years ago, in the Stone Age. A 'man in a rubber suit' monster and stereotype cast, but it was long ago. I found it still compelling and good fun. 'Monster' has the typical period characters, brave military man, helpless mother with irritating child in peril, but is a good Saturday night film. Enjoy, they're fun
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Good old MGM and their excellent "Midnite Movies" series. Excellent prints of both films, tho I did find the sound on "IT" fluctuated a bit, but not enough to spoil anything. THE MONSTER THAT CHALLENGED THE WORLD must be one of the most ridiculous titles (and monsters)...Ever. It's Snails for heavens sake and they don't exactly steam along. The only person really threatened is little Mimi Gibson and it's a shame that...Well, I won't go on. Some good photography, very little studio work, sterling stuff from Tim Holt, and all in all, forgetting those awful monsters, this is a fun film. "IT" is the more famous film but boy has it dated. As others have noted, the women serve cups of tea and wash up. Everyone smokes and there is an armoury fit for the entire US Marine force. The plot is ridiculous, yet, like "Monster.." you can't help but go along with it and enjoy. An excellent price, good prints, well worth getting. Recomended to fans (Not sure what today's youth would make of them).
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