Because let’s face it. In essence, that’s what Destroy All Humans is. A video game franchise that’s been designed as a parody for all of the American made, Cold War-era inspired alien invasion films. Films that scared a great deal of the American population. And served as great propaganda against the ultimate arch-nemesis. Communist Russia.
Destroy All Humans: The Red Scare Was Real
Not to mention, there are tons of such Cold War-era movies and Alien invasion themed movies too. Especially in the ’50s when Hollywood became a bankable genre and of course when the Red Scare began. So, Hollywood made a conscious choice to combine those two things into a really interesting sub-genre. A Cold War-era inspired Alien Invasion films. Why? Because in most of the movies presented indirect expressions of anxiety about many things. Firstly about the possibility of a nuclear holocaust and secondly about a Communist invasion of America. Yup. The external threats were plentiful, and Hollywood caught the trend early on.
Destroy All Humans: Communist Invasion Was A Real Threat
Make no mistakes. The propaganda, participated by the anti-communist campaign of Joseph McCarthy began to appear in the late ’40s. But McCarthy really twisted the arm of Hollywood in the early ’50s. Certainly, it was then when most of the SF movies began to appear, and that sentiment lasted (in some shape or form) to the ’80s. Earth Versus The Flying Saucers and Invasion Of The Saucer-Men are all classics from from the ’50s. Next, The Day Mars Invaded Earth is another great flick, but from from the late ’60s. Indeed the ’90s saw a brief re-resurgence with Independence Day. But I’m here about the classic and classics alone.
However, before I go on with the movie portion of this post, I feel that a word or two about the game itself is in order.
Destroy All Humans: What’s’ the game all about?
Well, first and foremost, we’re not offering the original game per se. It’s a remake of the classic game that now has been developed by Black Forest Games and published by THQ Nordic GmbH. But it’s just as good, and yes. We do have it available for purchasing here at IndieGala.
Ultimately, the game allows you to terrorize the people of 1950s Earth in the role of the evil alien Crypto-137. That’s right. You’ll be playing with Crypto-137. You can also harvest DNA and bring down the US government. Not to mention you can annihilate puny humans using an assortment of alien weaponry and psychic abilities. Finally, you can reduce their cities to rubble with your flying Saucer!
Furthermore, it was the remake that made us look back and wonder about the time gone by. Can you believe that it’s been 15 years since the first release of Destroy All Humans? That’s right. Also, the game’s setting is in the late 50’s United States, AKA the peak of the scare. Moreover, the game has you you assigned on plenty of fantastic locations. First, Turnipseed Farm, then, Rockwell (a Nebraska town) and Santa Modesta (a parody of Santa Monica). Next Area 42 (a parody of Area 51) Union Town and finally Capitol City (a parody of Washington, D.C.).
I mean just take a look at some of the Steam comments about the remake:
“Rebuilt from the ground up in every way, Destroy All Humans! (2020) puts every other remaster on notice — this is how it’s done.”
90/100 – GamingTrend
“Destroy All Humans is a fantastic, faithful experience. Both older fans and new fans will find a lot of enjoyment here and hopefully, we will see a lot more of Crypto’s antics going into the new generation.”
8.5/10 – GameGrin
But back at the movies, I say. Which particular movies belong on this list? Well, I have my picks and coincidentally most of them are from the ’50s. And all of them have modern remakes too, but I can’t wait to know yours. Scroll down please!
The Day the Earth Stood Still
No, I’m not talking about the 2008 abysmal remake with Keanu Reeves in the lead. I’m talking about the 1951 black and white cult classic with Michael Rennie in the role of Klaatu. That’s right. Klaatu the alien lands in Washington DC at the very start of the movie. He informs the people of Earth that they must live peacefully or be destroyed as a danger to other planets. However, the Earth will not take this message lightly, and that’s where the plot thickens.
But did you know that the famous line “Klaatu Barada Nikto” has become a popular phrase among sci-fi fans over the years? Yes, it’s even been featured in other movies, like Army of Darkness. And, one of the reasons that Michael Rennie was cast as Klaatu was because he was generally unknown to American audiences. The fans would have accepted him as an alien, a lot more freely than say, Jimmy Steward or John Wayne. Take that Keanu! A nice additional touch that adds volume to the peace-keeping theme is the lack of casualties in the entire movie. Hence, the only two deaths in the entire movie are the two soldiers that are guarding Gort. Cool right? I thought so too.
Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Another 50’s classic. I just had to include Invasion of the Body Snatchers on this list. A movie that was largely ignored during the original theatrical run, but is considered a masterpiece now. Some movies do get recognition as they age. Almost like a fine wine really, but I think that’s a topic for a different post. Hey, it even has 98% on Rotten Tomatoes, so it just proves my point. Indeed there are plenty of remakes of Invasion of the Body Snatchers (as recently as 2007) but the 1956 movie is considered the best. And what’s it all about?
Well, it’s about a small-town doctor (played by Kevin McCarthy) who learns that the people in his community are replaced by emotionless alien duplicates. However, during the test screenings, much of the film’s original humor and humanity was cut. Why? Because the audience found it difficult to follow and laughed at all the wrong moments. The studio insisted because it was reluctant to mix humor with horror. It’s still a great movie nonetheless. With humor or without.
The Thing from Another World
Don’t get me wrong. John Carpenter’s remake (The Thing) is excellent, but for now, I’m going to stick with the 1951 movie. Another classic of the era, and another black and white movie. It’s about an Air Force Crew who will find a frozen humanoid alien organism in a remote location in the Arctic. Although seemingly harmless, the alien will start to cause mayhem in the frozen wasteland. And the struggle to get rid of him will not be easy that’s for sure As anticipated, the movie was viewed as a symbol of McCarthyism and the fight against communism on home soil. Almost a triumph of the US capitalism over the looming threat of RED communism if you will.
Likewise, the commentary of the threat of communism is evident all through the movie, but it’s nail-biting and entertaining as hell. Much like the previous movies on this list, The Thing from Another World got a remake as well. But the original movie is still to this day a huge influence to so many great directors of the horror genre. Ridley Scott, John Frankenheimer, Tobe Hooper, and John Carpenter himself. It’s a fantastic movie.
One movie on this list that I can safely say that I’ve seen back to back. First the original and then the remake, and I can’t choose which one I love the most. They’re both awesome. If I had a gun to my head, I’d go with the original but mostly because I ADORE Steve McQueen. But don’t get me wrong. I love the charming camp of the 80’s remake too. It’s silly and fun at the same time. And what’s it all about? Well, as the title suggests, it’s about an alien blob-like creature that crashes on Earth and starts to devour the humans in a tiny city.
The blob is Steve McQueen’s starring feature film debut, and one of his favorite movies too. Did you know that McQueen loved The Blob so much that had the poster on his bedroom wall at the time of his death? Yes he did. Also, the Blob itself was created with a modified weather balloon in the early shots. And in the later shots with colored silicone gel. The ingenuity of Hollywood is astonishing don’t you think?
Which are some of your picks for this list? Is it The Forbidden Planet? Or maybe Colossus: The Forbin Project? How about The Fly Or maybe Dr. Strangelove? It’s not a SiFi per se, but it’s about the Communism paranoia to the fullest. Tell us in the comment section. We’d love to know.