Imagine that you see a space ship land in the middle of the night over the hill behind your house. When your father goes out to investigate, he returns a strangely different man. Then your mother begins acting peculiarly. The teacher at school becomes menacing. Who will you believe when you tell them what you have seen?
This was the nightmarish scenario of the 1953 film Invaders From Mars, and director Tobe Hoooper, a scare-master in his own right, has refashioned this sci-fi thriller into a chilling tale about extraterrestrials who have come to take over the earth.
Hunter Carson is very convincing as the boy who suddenly finds his world transformed into a hostile and terrifying place. Karen Black, his real-life mother, plays the nurse of the school who becomes his only ally in a race to save the town. Timothy Bottoms and Laraine Newman are appropriately eerie as his parents, and James Karen gives the Marines a good name by courageously launching a military campaign against the extraterrestrials. Hooper makes Invaders From Mars as vivid as a nightmare.