Robert Wise's The Day the Earth Stood Still (Part III)

  • Anton Karl Kozlovic


ROBERT WISE'S THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL PART III: KLAATU'S HOLY ASSOCIATES AND RIVAL RELIGIOUS READINGS AbstractIn Part I, Anton Karl Kozlovic documented how the SF cult classic, The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951, dir. Robert Wise), was traditionally perceived as a UFO film with political, A.I., police and philosophical dimensions, and then argued that it is best understood as a religious film. In Part II, Kozlovic explicated the complex subtextual construction of Klaatu as a Christ-figure in the alien Messiah mould. In this third and final instalment, the critical literature was again reviewed using textually-based, humanist film criticism as the analytical lens to explore how Klaatu's associates buttressed his christic construction and deepened its religious resonance. Rival religious readings of the film were also briefly canvassed. It was concluded that The Day the Earth Stood Still is even more profoundly religious than hitherto appreciated. Further...