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THE INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS! -10/28/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — glennis at 6:37 pm on Monday, November 7, 2011

If mankind ever had to give up their human emotions to live in a pain free world, would they? That’s the type of world Dr. Miles saw right before his eyes in the famous classical horror movie, “The Invasion of the Body Snatchers”, directed by Don Siegal. A film that has been noted to be one of the greatest horror movies of all ages yet it lacks any bit of blood shed or high quality special effects, its beauty lays within its ability to frighten its audience with its story.

In the fictional town of Santa Maira, local doctor, DR Miles Bennell, comes back home to a strange epidemic where citizens claim their loved ones aren’t really themselves. The dilemma gets even more eerie when the doctor finds a body that resembles Jack, a friend of his, on the table of his house and a copy of his girlfriend, Becky Driscoll in her basement. They soon find out that space pods were being planted all across town, giving birth to copies of the townsfolk and draining their minds as they sleep. The replicas then take the physical identity of the human but they are unemotional and have identical personalities. The doctor at the end of the movie is the last human to escape from having his brain drained in his town and he rushes to a highway to warn the others in vain.

The invasion of the Body Snatcher’s, an adaptation of a novel written by Jack Finney’s, has been applauded for generations and have multiples remakes in the past 50 years or so. It’s interesting how a film was capable of scaring its audience without the use of blood shed or extreme major effects. The Allied Artist studio constricted Don Siegal to a tight $3,500 budget, which called for the use of creativity while producing the film. Many replacements were made to accommodate the budget such as a location change from San Francisco to straight to Hollywood and the use of novice actors. The special effects themselves used in the movie were mere cheap gimmicks of paper mache and dish soap for the bubbling pods that held the aliens.

We take a look at today’s movie industry and wonder how is the director going to surprise us next. They relay on tricks, special effects, or even some editing tricks to make the film look like a home movie to convince the audience that it’s real. Why then 50 years ago people thought that “The Body Snatchers” was such a realistic movie? It is the story that truly forces those reactions out of the targeted audience, watching other human beings up on the screen go through such an experience conveys secret emotions within us.

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