20 Million Miles to Earth, a Columbia movie produced in 1957
Two out of five stars
This movie starts bad and stays that way, there is scientific nonsense piled on scientific nonsense. It opens with an American space ship coming back from Venus crash landing in the sea off the coast of Sicily. A boat containing a family of fishermen manages to reach the craft before it sinks and they pull two of the crew out. One of them dies very soon but a local woman with medical training is able to save the other.
There is a capsule on the ship containing something equivalent to an embryo of a creature from Venus. It quickly “hatches” and it is a bipedal lizard-like creature. For reasons that are washed over using scientific nonsense, the Venusian is able to survive in Earth’s atmosphere and grow at an astounding rate. It grows to a massive size and is shocked into unconsciousness and captured for study. Kept sedated, it is being examined by an international team when the predictable happens.
Like several of the other Columbia science fiction movies of the time, this one contains a strong female character that serves as the love interest subplot. In the midst of all the action and scientific study, the lead male and female characters manage to find time to have some lovers’ disagreements.
The animation of the creature and the combining of images were state of the art at the time, giving a degree of realism that was then truly impressive. Provided you performed a major act of suspension of disbelief. This movie is like many others, in that it often generated an interest in science among the young viewership.
Now, it serves as an object of humor as people collect snacks and adult beverages and sit down to watch and laugh at some of the bad science fiction movies of the fifties.