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Night of the Big Heat

Entry updated 2 February 2017. Tagged: Film.

Film (1967; vt Island of the Burning Damned). Planet. Directed by Terence Fisher. Written by Ronald Liles, Pip Baker, Jane Baker, based on The Night of the Big Heat (1959) by John Lymington. Cast includes Patrick Allen, Peter Cushing, Sarah Lawson, Christopher Lee and Jane Merrow. 97 minutes, cut to 94 minutes. Colour.

An island off the UK coast experiences a freak heatwave, during which there are a number of mysterious killings involving fire. The culprits turn out to be Aliens who resemble giant fried eggs and are attracted to any source of heat. At the climax the few survivors are saved when a thunderstorm destroys the aliens: water, it seems, dissolves them. Lymington's pulp novel was certainly not rational sf, but it built up an atmosphere of claustrophobic tension which the film lacks. [JB]


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