March 4, 2011

The Day the Sky Exploded (1961)

It's always kinda funny to look at pre-moon landing space race movies. Knowing what has happened, it's so odd to see what people thought might happen in the future. The Day The Sky Exploded is kinda like that, with a single man in an atomic powered rocket making the journey to the moon, instead of the three men in a chemical powered rocket that we know made the journey.

Synopsis: When an manned atomic rocket to the moon malfunctions, the pilot ejects in the capsule sending the atomic motor off into space where it explodes in the asteroid belt sending a life ending meteor hurtling towards earth.

There is some debate on which country lays claim to this movie. The Italians claim it as their first Sci-Fi movie. The Germans, on the other hand, also claim this movie as their own. The truth is probably some where in between, as the film has a lot of both German and Italian actors in it. I'd lean more toward the Italians having the claim though since the original language it was filmed in was Italian.

If this is an Italian film then it's a lot better then their later attempts at Sci-Fi in the 70's and 80's. It's really pretty decent and if it had been made in America it might have been up there with the other great Sci-Fi films of that era. Sadly it wasn't and thus was pushed to the back burner of films. Thing is this movie is actually too good. It is missing the cheesiness and goofiness needed to make a really great B-Movie. After all that's the fun of these kinds of film. That hurts it as a movie to laugh at it's absurdities, but that's also a good thing as it can be looked at as a far more serious film.

The Day the Sky Exploded gets a 4 out of 5 on the Cheese-O-Meter.

Until next time, see you on the front line.


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