I Married a Monster from Outer Space

Year: 1958

Production: Paramount

Director: Gene Fowler Jr.

Starring: Tom Tryon, Gloria Talbot, Ken Lynch

Screenwriter: Louis Vittes

From a story by Gene Fowler Jr, and Louis Vittes

78 minutes; B/W

Another manifestation of the rampant paranoia of the 1950s, I Married a Monster from Outer Space might be called an sf version of I Married a Communist. In this enjoyably tasteless monster movie, a young woman's finace, on the way to his wedding, is captured and replaced by a shape-shifting alien, one of a group whose mission on Earth is to breed with human woman in an attempt to replenish their own declining population. The sexual subtext of some other sf B-movies is here brough out into the open, notably in the famous wedding-night scene where a flash of lightning reveals to the audience (but not the wife) the alien lineaments beneath the nervous cigarette-smoking husband's face. But the woman, who grow suspicious of her "spouse" over the next year, convinces a "real" man of what is happening and he organizes an rescue party. The aliens, impervious to bullets, are destroyed when dogs are set on them, and dissolve into writhing, bubbling alien knots. At various points, surprisingly, some sympathy for the aliens is deliberately roused, and in this respect I Married a Monster from Outer Space is more interesting than the otherwise deservedly more celebrated Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) , whose story, in part, it imitates. Gene Fowler, a former editor for Fritz Lang, directed well.

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