No alien monsters but a good number of character actors in an Ivon Tors, Curt Siodmak story about a lab created element that could knock the Earth out of orbit. It’s got quite an appetite.
Things are going crazy in Mr.Simon’s (Byron Foulger) appliance store. The clocks all stopped hours ago and everything is magnetized. He calls the Office of Power and Light. Chief Watson (John Zaremba) thinks Simon’s nuts but calls the Office of Scientific Investigation.
He reports to Dr.Jeffrey Stewart (Richard Carlson). Stewart and Dr.Dan Forbes (King Donovan) go to the store. Good thing they brought their geiger counters and protective clothing. Radiation is coming from the floor above. They go up and discover a dead body. There’s a container for an isotope. The element is missing.
The O.S.I. office switchboard manned by Nellie (Kathleen Freeman) is being swamped by calls. One is from a cab driver at the airport. His screwdriver is stuck to the cab’s engine block. Stewart and Forbes head right over. They discover that physicist Dr.Howard Denker took a flight out carrying a heavy briefcase. Stewart orders his plane turned around for an emergency landing.
Denker is dying. The pilot uses a blind man’s cane to hook the briefcase and take it to the back of the plane. The Co-pilot (Strother Martin) lands the plane back at the airport. Denker tells Stewart that he created the element in secret above the store. Now it’s out of hand. It’s always hungry and when that happens it reaches out for whatever it can find and kills it. The dead man was his lab assistant..
The element is taken to the university. Finally Stewart and his pregnant wife Connie (Jean Byron) can have some peace. Not for long. There’s been an implosion at the university. The element is getting out of hand and growing. Looks like the answer lies in Canada.
Thanks to clips from the 1934 German SF film “Gold” this one comes to a slam bang ending.
Jean Byron is best known as Natalie Lane, the mother on “The Patty Duke Show” (1963-66).