Image by ubberdave via Flickr

Tagline: WHAT IS IT?

U. S. soldiers stationed in the Arctic are summoned by a camp of scientists and one journalist to investigate a possible meteor.  Only, it’s not.

There is some controversy whether the credited director Christian Nyby or Howard Hawks deserves the credit for this film.

Whoever was ultimately responsible, the movie is excellent.

The fast paced, overlapping dialogue ups the tension and sense of realism.  The story sets up the situation and establishes the characters efficiently.  The characters make more-or-less reasonable decisions.

It feels more like reading science fiction than watching it.  I mean that the point of the tale is how to achieve the goal with the tools at hand rather than a bunch of razzle dazzle.

The fire fight scene was especially tense – I remarked at the time that they were obviously new to fire work.  According to IMDB, it was the first time a stunt with full body on fire had ever been done.  It’s worth watching just for that scene.

Also, it has the famous “watch the skies” line.  I didn’t realize this movie was where that came from, so I was thrilled to hear it.

I wish they made SF movies like this today.

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