Why do so many movies from the fifties have monsters/robots carrying these passive women? (King Kong may have started it in the thirties.)
It looks like some kind of some monstrous/masculine energy combined with an almost comatose feminine.
The fifties were a time of fear of nuclear annihilation and Betty Crocker/Susie Housewife models of the feminine.
Are there any women out there who like these posters? Want to be carried away by a robot/monster (or giant mushroom?}
It was quite a repressed and fearful time. (Remember The Blob?)
-More will be posted — any ideas out there why is this such a dominant theme from the fifties?
Produced by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack, King Kong is a tragic tale of a giant ape that is taken from his jungle home and put on display in the big city of New York. He escapes while pursuing a girl he has become enamored with and dies a tragic death at the hands of a squadron of Biplanes. Who among us can forget the classic ending line `It was Beauty that killed the beast’. King Kong played to record numbers during its East Coast release in the first week in March 1933(It was released in April on the West Coast). In two theaters in New York the film grossed $89,931 smashing all records. Keep in mind this was during the depression!
Lugosi’s character, Dr. Eric Vornoff, is experimenting with nuclear power in a primitive laboratory in his mansion with the help of his assistant, Lobo (Tor Johnson) . His goal is to create an army of mutated supermen to do his bidding. Newspaper reporter Janet Lawton (a role originally intended for Dolores Fuller but given to Loretta King Hadler starts investigating, as do the local police. Meanwhile, an Eastern-bloc agent or spy named Professor Strowksi (George Becwar) appears and tries to persuade Dr. Vornoff to return to their homeland. In the end, Lobo betrays Vornoff and Vornoff becomes a monster and is then blown up in an atomic explosion. (Wikipedia)
The Robot Monster has been sent to Earth as the advance party of an impending invasion. Ordered by The Great One to capture several humans, the Robot Monster becomes confused once it learns more about humans. Ro-Man, an alien that looks remarkably like a gorilla in a diving helmet, has destroyed all but six people on the planet Earth. He spends the entire film trying to finish off these survivors, but complications arise when he falls for the young woman in the group. (1953)
When a Japanese yacht is damaged in a storm, its crew and passengers make their way to a nearby island. The island is apparently deserted, though the castaways soon discover a beached research ship on the other side of the island. An examination of the ship, the insides of which are encrusted with a thick mold, soon reveals that it had an international crew which appear to be involved in radiation and fallout research. Despite this it seems that the crew survived for some time after the ship was beached, however there is no indication of their current whereabouts.
Although mushrooms are unusually plentiful on the island, the ship’s captain warns the passengers not to eat them because of the danger of poisoning, and to concentrate on birds and turtle eggs. However, it is soon discovered that birds are afraid of the island and that turtle eggs are scarce. A small supply of canned food is found on the research ship, but this only buys the crew some time. Inevitably, members of the crew begin eating the mushrooms. In the meantime, they also discover that the crew of the abandoned ship hadn’t vanished as completely as they’d originally thought. Attack of the Mushroom People (“Fungus of Terror) (1963)
As projected here, a thinly-disguised NASA, working with nuclear rockets, is ready for manned flights in the mid-fifties…but Dr. Ralph Harrison doesn’t think so, and resigns in protest. Colleague Prof. Nordstrom promptly enlists his aid in developing an alternative robot Spaceman! Naturally, foreign spies are keenly interested… Uses documentary footage of early space research. Dr. Harrison and Prof. Nordstrom develop the robot Tobor for space flight, intending that he should be controlled by ESP. They announce their plans at a press conference which will spread the news worldwide, then they become concerned that press conference security was breached because an extra person attended and they wouldn’t want the information falling into the wrong hands! The extra person was a spy; he and his henchmen kidnap Nordstrom and his grandson, but Nordstrom cleverly signals Tobor to charge to the rescue. The spies tear open the boy’s shirt and threaten to use a blowtorch on him, and the composition makes the torch appear to be pointed at the boy’s temple while he concentrates on summoning his hero Tobor (the boy’s father has been dead for several years, but it looks like Harrison is striking up a relationship with his mother) (Tobor the Great, 1953)
A hallmark of the science fiction genre as well as a wry commentary on the political climate of the 1950s, The Day the Earth Stood Still is a sci-fi movie less concerned with special effects than with a social parable. A spacecraft lands in Washington, D.C., carrying a humanoid messenger from another world (Michael Rennie) imparting a warning to the people of Earth to cease their violent behavior. But panic ensues as the messenger lands and is shot by a nervous soldier. His large robot companion destroys the Capitol as the messenger escapes the confines of the hospital. He moves in with a family as a boarder and blends into society to observe the full range of the human experience. Director Robert Wise (West Side Story) not only provides one of the most recognizable icons of the science fiction world in his depiction of the massive robot loyal to his master, but he avoids the obvious camp elements of the story to create a quiet and observant story highlighting both the good and the bad in human nature. — . (The Day the Earth Stood Still, 1951)