The North Bend Theatre continues its Bad Sci-Fi film series with Stranger From Venus, a 1954 alien invasion film that lands in the North Bend Theatre on Saturday at 10 PM.
Stranger From Venus is based on an incident recorded in the 1953 bestseller non-fiction book Flying Saucers Have Landed by Desmond Leslie, who also wrote the screenplay. In his book, Leslie tells the story of a California man who met a Venusian.
This stranger from Venus traveled to Earth via a flying saucer and communicated using telepathy and hand gestures.
Interestingly, this movie never showed in theaters in 1954. It only appeared on TV in the New York City area. Could the similarities between Stranger from Venus to its better-known cousin, The Day the Earth Stood Still, be to blame? The storylines mirror each other, with an alien in human form warning Earth about the dire consequences of atomic weapons.
The casting of Patricia Neal as the female lead in both movies is another eyebrow-quirking coincidence. Take out a giant robot and the famous line “Klaatu barade nikto,” and you have the poor man’s version of The Day the Earth Stood Still.
In the film Stranger from Venus, the Venusian is played elegantly by Austrian actor Helmut Dantine. Beth Burrows, owner of the North Bend Theatre, says Dantine adds another dimension to this movie. “While growing up in Austria in the 1930s, he was imprisoned by Nazis and managed to escape. Twice! During our pre-show intro to the film, we’ll share the full story of Dantine and his harrowing experiences. It is a larger-than-life story.”
Stranger From Venus at the North Bend Theatre, Saturday at 10 PM. http://northbendtheatre.com