First Men in the Moon

Synopsis: Based on the HG Wells story. The world is delighted when a space craft containing a crew made up of the world's astronauts lands on the moon, they think for the first time. But the delight turns to shock when the astronauts discover an old British flag and a document declaring that the moon is taken for Queen Victoria proving that the astronauts were not the first men on the moon. On Earth, an investigation team finds the last of the Victorian crew - a now aged Arnold Bedford and he tells them the story of how he and his girlfriend, Katherine Callender, meet up with an inventor, Joseph Cavor, in 1899. Cavor has invented Cavorite, a paste that will allow anything to deflect gravity and he created a sphere that will actually take them to the moon. Taking Arnold and accidentally taking Katherine they fly to the moon where, to their total amazement, they discover a bee-like insect population who take an unhealthy interest in their Earthly visitors...
Genre: Adventure, Sci-Fi
Director(s): Nathan Juran
Production: Sony Pictures Entertainment
Rotten Tomatoes:
103 min

- Well, we're here, Nevsky.

- I see, colonel.

Rice to crew. Transmit touchdown time

and position to mother ship.

Let's look at the environment telemetry.

Only Child to UN One.

Touchdown at 7 hours, 2 minutes,

9 seconds sidereal time.

Latitude 3-7 degrees, 8 minutes,

10 seconds...

- What's it like, Stuart?

- Readings are coming.

UN One to Only Child on H.F.

UN One to Only Child.

How do you read? How do you read?

- Rice on U.H.F. High. Do you read me?

- Loud and clear.

- How was the landing?

- We made it in one piece.

We're putting

the survey team down, colonel.

Sgt. Martin's entering

the escape hatch. Here's Nevsky.

- Set?

- Go, sir.

Roger, Only Child.

Your impact point is right on.

- Read you loud and clear.

- Secure escape hatch.

Your systems look good.

How does it look out the window?


The lapse time is 13 plus 10.

This is it, Rice.

- The big event.

- Release outer lock.

Sgt. Andrew Martin,

the farm boy from Indiana...

is the first man

to set foot on the moon.

Congratulations are coming

from all over.

Martin! Stuart!

Well, I didn't put it there.

Hey, colonel, we found something.

You'd better take a look.

And here's something else.

"Claimed for her

Majesty Queen Victoria...

in the year of our Lord, 1899."

- How do we explain it?

- The Kremlin will never believe it.

It's like a summons of some kind.

"Katherine Callender," whoever she is.

They'll never believe it. Never.


Get it on the scanner to Earth

before it falls apart.

How am I gonna tell them this?

Queen Victoria.

They'll think I'm nuts.

Rice to Mother ship.

Rice to Mother ship. Urgently request...

UN Space Agency Investigation Team...

proceed at once to Dymchurch, England.

Sgt. Martin is the first man...

You'll see there never was

a Katherine Callender.

You coming, Dr. Tok?

England's a land of eccentrics.

On the moon, for the first time.

I hope.

Dr. Tok from the U. N. Space Agency?

I'm from the Express. Tell me...


That's a bit before my time, yes.

We keep the records over there.

Katherine Callender, you say?

Is it a birth, a wedding...

or a death?

We just want to know

if she once lived here.

Come this way.

- So some crackpot faked it.

- Why?

To take the frosting off the UN cake.

Mother Empire, still waving the flag.

We'd better start with the births.

Oh, bless my soul, these are the deaths.

Well, you know, it's weddings.

They always affect me.

They do, even now. Look at this stuff.

They never affected me.

Much to my regret.

Here we are, C-A...

Callaghan, Calder...

You did say "Callender"?

- Yes, Katherine Callender.

- There's no record...

of any Katherine Callender

among the births.

- She never existed.

- Address is Cherry Cottage.

Bedford, Bedford... I remember now.

I married her.

From Boston, Massachusetts.

- So there is a Katherine Callender?

- Was. She died some 10 years ago.

- Is Mr. Bedford alive?

- If he wasn't, he'd be in the book.

Over here. Has this

to do with the moon...

Hold it! You were saying, sir?

Mr. Bedford has been in a nursing home

for a long time.

Where is it?

The Limes, outside Dymchurch.

Along Folkstone Road.

Should I let them know you're coming?

- Let's have a picture or something.

- Oh, come on.

- I don't know. Go to Folkstone Road.

- The Limes, the nursing home.

The UN Space Agency?

Well, I hope you're

not wasting your time.

You see, we've had trouble before

with Mr. Bedford's obsessions.

But if you'll follow me,

I'll take you up to his room.


Sending letters abroad to officials.

Russian Space Agency...

National Aeronautic and Space

Administration about the moon.

When I saw your credentials, I wondered.

- What sort of letters?

- Warnings. Absurd warnings.

- Does he know of the expedition?

- We don't let him watch television.

It excites him needlessly.

- Now, must you see him?

- It is necessary.

Just the UN party, then.

No, you newspaper men

are not allowed through.

Mr. Bedford.


Mr. Arnold Bedford?

I'm Richard Challis, UN Space Agency.

Margaret Hoy, Mr. Glushkov and Dr. Tok.

Please, sir, won't you sit down?

I hope you don't mind...

- ...but I just want to ask you...

- We can save time.

Have you ever seen these before?

My glass.

How did you...

How did you find...

You found them on the moon, didn't you?

There's been an expedition?

- It's there now.

- There now?

They're in great danger.

- I know. You must stop them.

- Please. Matron?

- You must go.

- Stop them. They must know.

It's very dangerous for all of them.

Are you seriously telling us

you've been on the moon and returned?

Oh, it's so long...

Thank you.

I'd been...

I'd been engaged in an

unsuccessful business speculation.

My creditors were pressing me hard.

I'd always had the idea

I could write a play.

Wonderful financial possibilities

in a successful play.

I looked for somewhere

secluded where I could write.

In the end I rented a cottage,

out near Dymchurch.

I remember it was along

an abandoned canal.

- Just one today, Mr. Bedford.

- Thank you.

- Hi.

- Infernal contraption!


- Hello, darling.

- Kate.

- Was it all right with your relations?

- No trouble.

They think I'm at Worthing

rehearsing a play.

Cherry Cottage.

Arnold, it's lovely.

And with a real cherry tree.

The moat to my castle. Come on.

Watch your step.

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Nigel Kneale

Thomas Nigel Kneale (18 April 1922 – 29 October 2006) was a British screenwriter. He wrote professionally for more than 50 years, was a winner of the Somerset Maugham Award, and was twice nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best British Screenplay. In 2000, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Horror Writers Association. Predominantly a writer of thrillers that used science-fiction and horror elements, he was best known for the creation of the character Professor Bernard Quatermass. Quatermass was a heroic scientist who appeared in various television, film and radio productions written by Kneale for the BBC, Hammer Film Productions and Thames Television between 1953 and 1996. Kneale wrote original scripts and successfully adapted works by writers such as George Orwell, John Osborne, H. G. Wells and Susan Hill. He was most active in television, joining BBC Television in 1951; his final script was transmitted on ITV in 1997. Kneale wrote well-received television dramas such as The Year of the Sex Olympics (1968) and The Stone Tape (1972) in addition to the Quatermass serials. He has been described as "one of the most influential writers of the 20th century," and as "having invented popular TV." more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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