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  Kronos A Drain On Resources
Year: 1957
Director: Kurt Neumann
Stars: Jeff Morrow, Barbara Lawrence, John Emery, George O'Hanlon, Morris Ankrum, Robert Shayne, Kenneth Alton
Genre: Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Scientists have been tracking an asteroid that is headed for Earth, yet they don't realise the asteroid is in fact a huge flying saucer that has sent out a probe which takes over its victims' minds. Once Dr Elliott (John Emery) has succumbed to the alien intelligence, unbeknownst to his colleagues, a plan is put into action where the saucer is shot down by the U.S. Air Force and lands in the sea off the west coast of Mexico. Then the trouble really begins...

This entertaining variation on the giant monster movie was scripted by Louis Goldman, from the story by Irving Block. The monster takes a while to appear, but it's worth waiting for: a massive robot that absorbs energy from everything in its path, and enjoying an insatiable appetite. It looks like two metal cubes placed one on top of the other, with a dome at the top and four legs at the base, and the more power stations it raids and the more it's bombed the stronger it becomes.

If you're in a conspiracy theory frame of mind, you could see Kronos as one of those metaphorical fifties sci-fi movies about the threat to the American way of life by outside forces such as Communism (or real life space aliens - there's a great U.F.O desert encounter at the start). As the giant robot ravages Mexico, it heads for the atom bombs of the United States of America, emulating the Domino Principle. Although science is on our side, nuclear energy could be a liability - not, of course, because of its inherent danger, but because it could fall into the wrong hands and be used against us.

On the other hand, maybe it's just a fun explosions and special effects movie. Makes you wonder why people enjoy seeing things blown up in films as long as the aggressor meets the most spectacular demise at the end. Our hero, Dr Les (Jeff Morrow), is continually putting off his dates with his girlfriend (also a scientist) because of Kronos - he can't even recreate the canoodling in the surf scene out of From Here To Eternity without being interrupted. The only woman in his assistant's life is S.U.S.I.E., a computer the size of a warehouse with a ridiculously complex acronym, but it provides the clue to Kronos' Achilles' Heel - yet again, technology and good old U.S. brainpower save the day. Music by Paul Sawtell and Bert Shefter.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

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Kurt Neumann  (1908 - 1958)

German director who came to Hollywood in the early-talkie era and soon established himself as a competent, economic film-maker. Moved from studio to studio directing in a variety of genres, but it was his love of sci-fi that led to his best films - The Fly, Kronos and Rocketship X-M.

 
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