Invasion of the Saucer Men


1h 9m 1957

Brief Synopsis

A teenage couple making out in the woods accidentally runs over an alien creature with their car. The creature's hand falls off, but it comes alive, and, with an eye growing out of it, begins to stalk the teens. Meanwhile, Joe the town drunk wants to store the body in his refrigerator, but some of the alien's buddies inject alcohol into his system, and Joe dies of an overdose.

Film Details

Also Known As
Attack of the Saucer Men
Release Date
Jun 19, 1957
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Malibu Productions
Distribution Company
American International Pictures
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 9m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Film Length
6,146ft (7 reels)

Synopsis

Two drifters, Joe Gruen and Art Burns, find themselves at loose ends on a Saturday night in a small town. They split up and Joe, who has been drinking, drives off in their car to look for girls while Art returns to their room. While driving around, Joe sees a spaceship land and heads toward the landing site. Back in town, Joan Hayden, daughter of the city attorney, and her boyfriend, Johnny Carter, are planning to elope that night, but first head to Lovers' Point, a popular spot for romance located on farmer Larkin's property. Larkin has a continuing feud with the young couples who trespass on his land and feed beer to his favorite bull. When Joe returns to tell Art about his find, Art assumes that his friend has had too much to drink. Meanwhile, Lt. Wilkins, a military public relations officer, has been informed of the spaceship's landing and alerts his superior, Col. Ambrose. As they leave Lovers' Point, Johnny and Joan almost collide with a jeep carrying Wilkins, the colonel and two soldiers, and later run over what they think is a young boy, but discover is an alien from the spaceship. After a gnarly hand detaches itself from the dead creature and punctures one of the tires on Johnny's car with needle-like instruments it can extend and retract from its fingers, Johnny and Joan decide to risk going to Larkin's farmhouse to phone for help. Meanwhile, Wilkins and the colonel reach the spaceship and radio for engineering help to enter it. Larkin is not home when Johnny and Joan arrive to phone the police, who regard their report of running over an alien as a teenage prank. As Joe drives back to the ship, he sees Johnny's car with the alien's body lodged underneath the front wheels. After Larkin returns home and orders Johnny and Joan off his property at shotgun point, he leaves again. Soon after, Joe arrives, phones Art and tells him to empty their refrigerator, as he intends to store the alien's body in it. However, when Joe returns to Johnny's car, a creature kills him with a lethal injection. When Johnny and Joan find their car surrounded by several of the creatures, they run to a nearby highway. At the landing site, the military, unable to open the spacecraft by conventional means, use acetylene torches on its hull, causing it to explode and disintegrate. Meanwhile, the police discover Joe's body and, remembering Johnny's phone call, arrest Johnny and Joan for murder because they had admitted running into something. Although Joan's father does not believe their story about the aliens, he offers to help his daughter, but refuses to aid Johnny, of whom he does not approve. Johnny and Joan escape from the police station, steal a detective's patrol car and head back to the scene of the accident to look for clues to prove their story. While they are searching, the severed alien hand crawls into the police car and, as Johnny and Joan drive back to town, the hand attempts to attack Joan. The couple stops the car, gets out and locks the hand inside, hoping that it will provide the hard evidence they need. Remembering that Joan's father had remarked that probably only Art would be interested in the details of his friend's death, they decide to bring Art to see the hand. After they locate Art, he agrees to accompany them in Joan's car. Meanwhile, one creature has incapacitated Larkin's bull while others attempt to free the hand. When Johnny, Joan and Art arrive, they shine a spotlight into Johnny's car and Art sees the hand. Before Art can photograph it, however, the hand evaporates in front of them. The creatures then surround the trio and although Art shoots a gun at them to no effect, the aliens are partially disabled by the car's headlights until the battery dies. Joan and Johnny manage to escape, but Art is captured. Joan persuades Johnny that they should surrender to the police but, when they phone the station from Larkin's house, they learn that the charges against them have been dropped because an autopsy has determined that Joe died of heart failure due to his blood's extremely high alcohol content. When the police refuse to help them, Joan suggests that they seek help from the couples at Lovers' Point. After several couples circle their cars around the aliens and turn on their headlights, the panicked aliens emit smoke, then explode. When Johnny discovers a very drunk Art, he realizes that the aliens have been injecting pure alcohol into their victims to disable or kill them. After Larkin finds his drunken bull, he suspects the teenagers of inebriating the animal and orders them off his property. Joan and Johnny then resume their elopement.

Film Details

Also Known As
Attack of the Saucer Men
Release Date
Jun 19, 1957
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Malibu Productions
Distribution Company
American International Pictures
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 9m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Film Length
6,146ft (7 reels)

Articles

Frank Gorshin (1933-2005)


Frank Gorshin, a skilled comedian, impressionist and character actor who will forever be indentified with his role as "The Riddler" on the cult series from the '60s Batman lost his battle with lung cancer on May 17 at the Providence St. Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California. He was 72.

He was born on April 5, 1933, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania into a family of modest means, his father was a railroad worker and mother a homemaker. His childhood impressions of Edward G. Robinson and James Cagney paid off when he won a local talent contest at 17, and that led to his first gig at 17 at a the prize was a one week engagement at Jackie Heller's Carousel night club, Pittsburgh's hottest downtown spot in the day. The taste was there, and after high school Frank enrolled in the Carnegie-Mellon Tech School of Drama did hone his craft.

His career was interrupted briefly when he entered the US Army in 1953. He spent two years in Special Services as an entertainer. Once he got out, Frank tried his luck in Hollywood. He made his film debut in a forgettable William Holden vehicle The Proud and Profane, but his fortunes picked up soon when he and when he hooked up with American Internation Pictures (AIP). With his charasmatic sneer and cocky bravado that belied his slender, 5' 7" frame, Frank made a great punk villian in a series of entertaining "drive-in" fare: Hot Rod Girl (1956), Dragstrip Girl, Invasion of the Saucer Men, and of course the classic Portland Expose (all 1957).

By the '60s, he graduated to supporting roles in bigger Hollywood fare: Where the Boys Are, Bells Are Ringing (both 1960), Ring of Fire, and his biggest tole to date, that of Iggy the bank robber in Disney's hugely popular That Darn Cat (1965). Better still, Frank found some parts on television: Naked City, Combat!, The Untouchables, and this would be the medium where he found his greatest success. Little did he realize that when his skeletal physique donned those green nylon tights and cackled his high pitch laugh that Frank Gorshin would be forever identified as "the Riddler," one of Batman's main nemisis. For two years (1966-68), he was a semi-regular on the show and it brought him deserved national attention.

By the '70s, Frank made his Broadway debut, as the star of Jimmy, a musical based on the life of former New York City Mayor Jimmy Walker. He spent the next two decades alternating between the stage, where he appeared regularly in national touring productions of such popular shows as: Promises, Promises, Prisoner of Second Street, and Guys and Dolls; and nightclub work in Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

He recently found himself in demand for character roles on televison: Murder, She Wrote, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and film: Terry Gilliam's Twelve Monkeys (1995), and the quirky comedy Man of the Century (1999). Yet his biggest triumph was his two year stint (2002-2004) as George Burns in the Broadway smash, Say Goodnight Gracie. It ran for 364 performances and he received critical raves from even the toughest New York theater critics, proving undoubtly that he was a performer for all mediums. He is survived by his wife Christina; a son, Mitchell; grandson Brandon and sister Dottie.

by Michael T. Toole
Frank Gorshin (1933-2005)

Frank Gorshin (1933-2005)

Frank Gorshin, a skilled comedian, impressionist and character actor who will forever be indentified with his role as "The Riddler" on the cult series from the '60s Batman lost his battle with lung cancer on May 17 at the Providence St. Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California. He was 72. He was born on April 5, 1933, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania into a family of modest means, his father was a railroad worker and mother a homemaker. His childhood impressions of Edward G. Robinson and James Cagney paid off when he won a local talent contest at 17, and that led to his first gig at 17 at a the prize was a one week engagement at Jackie Heller's Carousel night club, Pittsburgh's hottest downtown spot in the day. The taste was there, and after high school Frank enrolled in the Carnegie-Mellon Tech School of Drama did hone his craft. His career was interrupted briefly when he entered the US Army in 1953. He spent two years in Special Services as an entertainer. Once he got out, Frank tried his luck in Hollywood. He made his film debut in a forgettable William Holden vehicle The Proud and Profane, but his fortunes picked up soon when he and when he hooked up with American Internation Pictures (AIP). With his charasmatic sneer and cocky bravado that belied his slender, 5' 7" frame, Frank made a great punk villian in a series of entertaining "drive-in" fare: Hot Rod Girl (1956), Dragstrip Girl, Invasion of the Saucer Men, and of course the classic Portland Expose (all 1957). By the '60s, he graduated to supporting roles in bigger Hollywood fare: Where the Boys Are, Bells Are Ringing (both 1960), Ring of Fire, and his biggest tole to date, that of Iggy the bank robber in Disney's hugely popular That Darn Cat (1965). Better still, Frank found some parts on television: Naked City, Combat!, The Untouchables, and this would be the medium where he found his greatest success. Little did he realize that when his skeletal physique donned those green nylon tights and cackled his high pitch laugh that Frank Gorshin would be forever identified as "the Riddler," one of Batman's main nemisis. For two years (1966-68), he was a semi-regular on the show and it brought him deserved national attention. By the '70s, Frank made his Broadway debut, as the star of Jimmy, a musical based on the life of former New York City Mayor Jimmy Walker. He spent the next two decades alternating between the stage, where he appeared regularly in national touring productions of such popular shows as: Promises, Promises, Prisoner of Second Street, and Guys and Dolls; and nightclub work in Los Angeles and Las Vegas. He recently found himself in demand for character roles on televison: Murder, She Wrote, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and film: Terry Gilliam's Twelve Monkeys (1995), and the quirky comedy Man of the Century (1999). Yet his biggest triumph was his two year stint (2002-2004) as George Burns in the Broadway smash, Say Goodnight Gracie. It ran for 364 performances and he received critical raves from even the toughest New York theater critics, proving undoubtly that he was a performer for all mediums. He is survived by his wife Christina; a son, Mitchell; grandson Brandon and sister Dottie. by Michael T. Toole

Quotes

I expected to be frightened on my wedding night, but nothing like this.
- Joan
Our job is to prevent a possible nation-wide panic by keeping the information from the public.
- Colonel

Trivia

Notes

The working title of this film was Attack of the Saucer Men. The film begins with a shot of the cover of a book entitled A True Story of a Flying Saucer and ends with an alien's hand closing the book and the words "The End...until the next time." Narration spoken by Lyn Osborn, as the character "Art Burns," purported author of A True Story of a Flying Saucer, is heard at the beginning and end of the film.
       According to a January 1957 Hollywood Reporter news item, the title of Paul Fairman's original story was "The Cosmic Frame." Although the news item lists the picture as a Sunset Productions, Inc. film, only Malibu Productions is listed by all other contemporary sources. Invasion of the Saucer Men was Malibu Productions' first film for American International Pictures.
       Dwarf actor Angelo Rossito, who was given screen credit but not seen in the print viewed, appeared inside an alien costume, according to modern sources.        In 1965 the film was remade for television as The Eye Creatures, in a version directed by Larry Buchanan and starring John Ashley and Cynthia Hull.

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States Summer June 1957

Remade in 1965 as "The Eye Creatures"

Released in United States Summer June 1957