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Nora King recovers consciousness in her apartment after a suicide attempt and discovers that her building has no electricity or water. She descends to the street and finds it totally deserted. Although she walks for several blocks, she encounters no sign of life anywhere in the city. In a doorway she discovers a woman's dead body and is surprised by the sudden appearance of Frank Brooks, who tells her that, after he arrived in the city the night before, he was robbed and mugged in a bar and revived only a few minutes earlier. As Frank and Nora walk to the city center they try to figure out what has happened to the half-million inhabitants. They hear music coming from inside a restaurant and inside find a woman, Vicki Harris, playing the piano while her male companion, Jim Wilson, mixes her a drink. Except for Vicki and Jim, who somehow missed the evacuation, the restaurant is deserted. The quartet then decide to visit other night spots, but when they attempt to take a car, they are interrupted by a man, Charles Otis, who explains that he has been checking all the cars and has discovered that they have all been disabled. Otis also says that the area he just came from appeared to have been heavily looted. After the group is frightened by the giant shadow of a monster, Frank decides that they should hide in a hotel across the street. In the lobby, Otis finds a newspaper with the headlines: "Invasion By Mystery Army. City To Be Evacuated." The accompanying report states that hostile forces of an unknown origin have landed fifty miles north of the city. Terrified, Otis decides he must escape but is killed in the street by a disintegrating ray, beamed from the head of a large robot. The others, seeking a more secure hiding place, move from the hotel lobby to a suite on the fourth floor. Meanwhile, at an Army command post, a general tells his colleagues that although he does not know the nature of their enemy, he suspects that they may be automatons from outer space. The invaders have already destroyed an airborne division and next decimate twenty-four planes from bomber command. Back at the hotel, after Frank postulates that the enemy may be from Venus, the only planet capable of supporting life, Nora reveals her suicide attempt to Frank. Later, the general orders atomic artillery and guided missiles to be readied and receives news that a deactivated robot has been found. A team of scientists at an army research laboratory then attempts to discover what caused the robot to become inoperative. Meanwhile, Vicki and Jim, who have been dating for ten years, squabble and make up. Nora then tells Frank that her husband was killed in an auto accident while he and she were arguing. At the laboratory, the chief scientist determines that the robots, which are driven by electro-magnetic impulses, can duplicate human motion and are impervious to bullets, even at point-blank range. While Frank, Nora and the others are sleeping, a psychotic killer named Davis, who escaped from custody during the evacuation, breaks into the suite and terrorizes the women at gunpoint. Davis tells Nora he knows a way out of the city via a sewer and wants her to go with him, and that he plans on using the others as decoys. In the laboratory, the scientist discovers how to destroy the deadly, beam-producing, cathode ray tube in the robots' heads. After Davis orders the group back to the lobby and is about to escape, Vicki defies him, prompting him to shoot and kill her and wound Frank in the shoulder. Enraged by Vicki's murder, Jim attacks Davis and chokes him to death. Suddenly, a robot breaks through the lobby's window and pursues Frank, Nora and Jim to the hotel's roof where Jim is killed by the robot's beam as he attempts to reach an adjacent building. Just as the robot is about to disintegrate Frank and Nora, Army vehicles arrive equipped with a loudspeaker emitting a high frequency tone that disables the robot. Later, an Army officer explains to Frank and Nora that the research laboratory had discovered that vibrations from the high frequency tone shattered the robots' cathode ray tubes, rendering them inoperative.
Cast & Crew
|MPAA Ratings:||Premiere Info:||not available|
|Release Date:||1954||Production Date:||
|Color/B&W:||Black and White||Distributions Co:||Allied Artists Pictures Corp.|
|Sound:||Mono||Production Co:||Abtcon Pictures, Inc.|
Leonard Maltin Ratings & Review
LEONARD MALTIN MOVIE RATING
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User Ratings & Review
el debbo 2016-05-19
This movie starts out strong. It looks like the city is completely deserted and all utilities are down. The cinematography is very good. Then...
GREAT B&W SCI-FI
THIS WAS A GREAT B&W SCI FI MOVIE FROM THE 50'S STARRING RICHARD DENNING. THEY NEED TO SHOW THIS AGAIN OR RELEASE IT ON DVD. THERE ARE SCALPERS...
Target Earth 1954
BJ McMullen 2013-10-05
When I lived in Miami Florida from first grade up to 6th grade, every saturday I would watch scary movies on creature feature. No one liked to watch it...