Invaders From MarsAs I mentioned in The Maze, director William Cameron Menzies made a couple of movies in 1953. The first was The Maze, a weird gothic horror mystery with an out of left field twist. The second was more successful, Invaders from Mars.

A young boy named David MacLean (Jimmy Hunt) is woken up during a thunderstorm. He gets up and looks out the window where he sees a large UFO land off in the distance. He tells his parents and his scientist dad takes off to check out the boy’s claim. When good ole dad returns, he’s acting quite differently. He’s cold, distant and hostile. He’s also sporting a red mark on the back of his neck. Soon most of the town is acting weird and nobody believes the boy’s story. The police place him in the care of Dr. Pat Blake (Helena Carter).

The good doctor starts to believe young David’s story and she gets Dr. Stuart Kelston (Arthur Franz) to help them. They quickly realize that it’s an invasion from Mars and the martians are trying to destroy a nearby rocket plant. They’ve also been subverting the locals into doing their bidding. The army is mobilized and the search for the martian base begins.

This film also has a twist ending but it’s not as bizarre as The Maze. It also laid the groundwork for other alien invasion / red menace type sci-fi horror films in the 1950s. Most notably would be the 1956 Invasion of the Body Snatchers.