Conquest of Space (1955) Movie Script

This a story of tomorrow,
or the day after tomorrow,
when men have built
a station in space,
constructed in the form
of a great wheel
and set a thousand miles
out from the Earth,
fixed by gravity and turning
about the world every two hours,
serving a double purpose;;
An observation post in the heavens
and a place where a spaceship
can be assembled
and then launched to
explore other planets
and the vast universe itself,
in the last and greatest
adventure of mankind,
a plunge toward the;;;
;;;conquest of space;
Rocket coming up, sir.
It's the transport, right on
schedule, eh, captain?
No, sir, they're Iate,
a minute and 33 seconds.
It's a minute and 34 seconds, captain.
It's not important, of course,
but it could be. In celestial navigation,
one second can be the difference
between Iife and death.
Gee, I hope they don't forget to
bring up the ice cream this time.
I thought I issued an order
to the effect that food
was never to be a subject of
conversation on the Wheel.
- I'm sorry, sir, I forgot.
- There are some men aboard
who are not permitted to enjoy
the food that you eat, corporal.
And unless you're anxious
to share their diet,
- I'd advise you not to forget again.
- I won't, sir.
The moon, Barney. A few days,
a month and we'II be on it.
Do you realize, sir, that I've been up
here a full year without any Ieave?
There are several of us
in the same boat, Barney.
But I'd only been married
for three and a half months.
I'm sure Linda will understand.
She's a sensible girl.
After all, when a girl
marries a soldier...
Ghost, you mean.
A robot spinning around the world
every two hours on a tin doughnut.
That's what you've been to Mother
for three years
- and what I'm becoming to my wife!.
- Barney!.
I'm sorry, sir.
You built the Wheel, and you're proud
of it. You've got every right to be, but...
...well, why me?
We were happy down there.
A Iittle cottage right on the base,
she was just beginning to furnish it,
and you yank me out of it.
You belong here, Barney.
You're my son.
Space is your heritage.
I formally request, sir, that inasmuch
as service on the Wheel is voluntary
and I have never been accorded
the privilege of volunteering,
that I be granted permission to
return to Earth on the transport rocket.
Colonel, sir, there's a storm
building up in the Pacific.
A real Iulu. Might be a hurricane.
Chart it and notify all weather
stations Iikely to be affected.
Yes, sir.
Permission denied, captain.
Somehow or another, I kind of hate
to see this job get finished.
It's Iike my cousin Seymour...
...he's a plastic surgeon.
He built a face
for an ugly dame once...
...which turned out to be
so beautiful...
...he fell in Iove with her!.
So off she went with
the garbage collector!.
You afraid this beautiful ship
will go off without you, Jackie?
Precisely and definitely the opposite.
Well, frankly, I'm...
I'm frightened of going, but...
...I'm more frightened
of being Ieft behind.
For what you scared?
We build this ship, so we fly it.
And so we get to the moon.
Who's gonna guarantee
we ever get back?
I'm with Pete.
For a fat, solid year,
I been eating birdseed out of this
goofy sombrero with no squawk.
Now, let some other heroes
take it from here;
This little guinea pig ain't going
on no more joy-hops
for the great Colonel Merritt;
And if old space-happy
thinks otherwise...
-...he can take his ship and...
- And what, Sergeant Siegle?
Sergeant Siegle just Ieft, sir.
Roy!. Secure that cable!.
I... I...can't...move a finger.
Watch out, the high voltage!.
Grab it.
- Are you hurt?
- No, but I...
What is it, Roy?
What is the matter with you?
I don't know, I'm... I'm...paralyzed.
Let's get him back to the Wheel. Taxi!
We've got a sick man here!
Gotta get him back to the Wheel!
AII set. Shove off!
Are you feeling better, Roy?
I'm all right, I guess.
Yeah, I'm all right.
Let's have the straight of it.
What's wrong with the Iad?
What's the matter?
You sick or something?
- You hurt some place?
- No, I...
I just couldn't move out there, but...
-...I'm all right.
- You couldn't move, you say?
- Why not?
- I don't know, I... I just couldn't.
He's all right, he told you.
Leave him alone! It ain't important!
You know the colonel's orders
with you incubator babies.
Even a pimple is important.
You bluebirds are my responsibility,
and he's reporting to the infirmary.
Come on, Iad, I'II take you meself.
Gee, it'd be worth
taking a trip to the moon...
...just to get rid of that
overgrown babysitter.
What is it, sir? I...
I'm all right, aren't I?
Of course, my boy, of course.
Nothing more serious than a
momentary Iapse of nerve function.
You're fine.
You believe him, sir? I mean,
this couldn't make any difference.
It's been a whole year, sir, and after
all this time, I... I'd hate to wash out.
Well, I'd hate to Iose you, Cooper.
Thank you, sir.
Let's have it, Kurt.
What's really the matter with that boy?
Oh, Cooper's in fine condition, sir.
Why, you gave him a complete
physical examination
only three days ago, major.
A perfect score, remember?
You don't have to worry about
that boy, sir, I assure you.
He was paralyzed out there, sergeant.
He couldn't move.
That's something to worry
about up here.
- What was it?
- Somatic dysphasia,
self-induced inability of the nerves
to transmit brain messages.
In your Ianguage, space fatigue.
- Self-induced?
- Well, not consciously, of course.
Each mind has its own Iimit
of endurance, at which point it rebels.
The result can be anything.
Simple hives, hallucination, headache,
Ioss of speech, paralysis,
total insanity, anything.
AII of us up here suffer from the
same disease to some degree.
It is to be expected.
Man has never before Iived in space.
Fortunately, most of the cases are
so minor they present no problem.
But Cooper?
Cooper will be perfectly normal... soon as you return him to Earth.
- That bad?
What he experienced
was simply a warning.
If it happens again,
it could be permanent.
I see.
How about the others?
Andre, Imoto, excellent.
As for Siegle, Sanella
and Donkersgoed...
...every day with them, it is
a new set of horrible afflictions.
Some of them completely unknown
to medical science.
Furthermore, they all seem to have
an absolute Ioathing for the Wheel,
its commanding officer, its doctor,
and the Space Corps in general.
Everything...with the possible
exception of good food...
...and women.
In other words, they're normal.
Thank you very much, major.
What's the matter, sir, are you ill?
No, I'm all right.
Carry on.
My Rosie!
Thank heaven science ain't found
no way to put you up in capsules.
The future Mrs. Siegle, Pedro!
How'd you Iike to paddle that
around in your gondola?
- For a wife, too skinny.
- Too skinny?
That's beautiful skin, boy.
Andre, what did they say?
- I'm not out, am I?
- Out of what, Roy?
The Spaceship. It must have a crew.
Now, Iook, Roy...
...the colonel hasn't told us
definitely we are the crew.
We don't have to be told.
We are, you know we are.
Every man on the Wheel won his place
after six months of the stiffest
competition in the world.
Each one of us were handpicked
from the winners for this special duty.
Who else is being conditioned as we
are? Special food, special exercise.
Tests, Iectures! Watched every
second! Never any Ieave!
You fellows know how...
How tough it's been.
Now, just because I had a...
...bad couple of minutes out there...
That's funny, I didn't think to have
a bad couple of minutes myself.
I don't think we're going no place.
AII right, so we built a spaceship.
That doesn't mean we have to fly it.
Hey, maybe we're guinea pigs.
Maybe they wanna find out how much
of them cosmic rays a human carcass
can absorb before we Iight
up Iike Christmas trees.
And at double pay,
I can Iearn to Iike cosmic rays.
With all that Ioot, boy,
I'm gonna open a TV shop,
settle down, marry my Rosie
and raise a houseful of kids.
So if I glow a Iittle in the dark,
she could find me better.
If you get that charged
with cosmic rays,
you'd better not plan
on too Iarge a family.
That's a Iot of borscht.
One of them cats in the Iab
just had a Iitter of seven kittens,
and she's been up here
Ionger than we have.
And anything a cat can do,
me and Rosie can do too.
- Last call for dining car.
- Food!
One! Two!
- Shall we go, gentlemen?
- Yes, Mother!
Hey, Frank!
Be seated, gentlemen.
Mahoney has six little lambs
He has to watch their diet
They helped the colonel build his ship
And now they have to fly it;
Dig in, fellas.
Space smorgasbord.
Say, pretty good today.
Corned beef, I think.
Imagine...all the nourishment
you need,
no mess, no bother and no waste.
I think I still prefer to eat the hard way.
Hey, Jackie...pass me a cup of coffee.
Cream and sugar.
OK, so I volunteered.
So I'II eat.
- What are you eating it for?
- Colonel Merritt eats it.
- That's a reason?
- For 30 years,
me and the colonel have been
banging around together.
Korea, Africa, China, now space.
If he intends to shove off
to anywhere else,
I ain't giving him any excuse
to Ieave me behind
because I ain't eating the proper diet.
Some more of that corned beef,
if you please.
You feeling better, son?
Mahoney, you know the colonel
a Iot better than the rest of us.
- You don't think he'II wash me up...?
- Stop worrying.
If he's going off on an excursion,
who's he gonna take?
He'II have to ask for volunteers again.
That son of his?
I happen to know by the grapevine
that the captain has already
put in for a transfer.
So that Ieaves you.
So I hope you and the colonel
will be very happy together.
This ain't kosher corned beef!
So the captain put in
for transfer, did he?
Well, good riddance, I say.
He's a fine officer.
He doesn't measure up
to his father's belt buckle.
You know...
...I was with the colonel the night
he got the word the kid was born.
We were in Indochina.
We did a Iittle bit of celebrating.
I remember the colonel,
captain he was then,
pointing up to the sky and said,
"You see that moon?
"That's his birthday present.
"Someday I'm gonna give it to him."
A balloon on a string would
mean as much to the ingrate.
Putting in for a transfer!
- This is a mistake.
- No mistake.
Compliments of Colonel Merritt.
- Steak!
- With mushrooms, yet.
Go ahead, Roy...dig in.
Looks delicious, doesn't it?
Go on, cut it. Cut that steak!
Man, that juice.
You were saying, Sergeant Brooklyn?
I was saying, Sergeant Imoto,
if it wasn't for a certain
fatheaded stool pigeon
just waiting for me to do it..., I'd be Iapping up
that steak juice...
- Watch out!
- Look out!
Meteor, sir!
Evacuate section 34 and seal off!
Switch to alternate tanks
and compensators.
Fire all jets...
...sporadic blasts...
...stabilize the Wheel.
Boy, oh, boy, what a fortune I could
make with this thing at Coney Island!
Boy, I'm telling you!
What happened to my...?
What happened to my turkey?
Landing crew ready to make fast.
AII stations manned.
Let's go.
It's OK, Mr. Fenton. Don't be afraid.
You'II just float over.
Hiya, Johnnie.
Got you back on the milk run, I see.
Yeah. Somebody's got
to service this box kite.
- Brought you a visitor. Doctor...
- Dr. Fenton. Nice to see you.
The colonel's expecting you, sir.
If you'd Iike to freshen up first...
Thanks, Iater. If it's possible, I'd
better see the colonel at once.
Of course. Take charge of
the new men, Iieutenant.
This way, sir.
Come in.
Thank heaven they sent you.
How are you, boy?
A bit rocky, but all right otherwise.
- And you, Sam?
- Oh, fit as a fiddle.
It's against regulations
to feel any other way on the Wheel.
- My own orders. Come on, sit down.
- Thanks, I will.
I didn't know until a half hour ago
that they were sending you up.
You remember my son,
Barney, don't you?
Dr. Fenton helped to plan every
detail of this Wheel, Barney.
They thought we were insane then,
didn't they, George?
Well, frankly, I thought so too...
...but here it is. You put it up here.
You know, for once, the International
Authority has really sent up somebody
who knows what it's all about.
And since you are one of the geniuses
responsible for that...monstrosity,
would you mind telling me what it is?
We assembled this thing
piece by piece as it came up,
according to your
brilliant specifications.
It's a masterpiece of technology
and electronics.
But it doesn't make one
particle of sense.
- In just what way do you mean?
- Well, here.
Take these wings, for instance.
What in blazes are wings
doing on this ship?
- There's no atmosphere on the moon.
- The moon?
And this booster. AII that power.
What are we gonna do,
go up to the moon, or going through it?
Or maybe we're supposed
to tow it back with us
so those bright boys
from every nation on Earth
can have a better Iook at it.
Is that the idea?
Working for one government
was bad enough,
but now we've got
all of them on our backs.
I think you'd better read your orders...
- General?
- Your promotion
is among these dispatches.
Congratulations, sir. A general!
Your orders, Sam.
And for you, captain, your transfer.
You'II be attached to Muroc,
I believe, as you requested.
You can return with me,
if you Iike.
Mars, sir?
George, this is fantastic.
No more so than going to the moon.
Mars isn't the moon.
There's a slight difference of...
...several million miles.
Not one word.
No warning.
Just...take off and Ieave!
It's just across the solar system.
I tell you we're not ready, George.
Why wasn't I consulted?
We only reached the decision
There was some
discussion about your age,
and, well, General Cronin
convinced the Authority...
And who convinced Cronin? You?
A Iong time ago, the Supreme
Council issued an order
that the final objective of this project
was to be the planet Mars.
You were present at all
those discussions.
The moon was never anything
more than just a test hop.
Now the orders are to eliminate the
test and proceed with the original plan.
Time makes it imperative.
There's only one man who can
take that ship to another planet
and bring it back,
the man who built the Wheel.
To gamble the Iives
of a crew of men...
...on as senseless a mission as this... callous. It's stupid!
Stupid or callous it may
seem to be at this time.
It is not senseless.
Man's very survival on Earth
depends upon the success
of this or some future search
for a new source of raw materials.
General Samuel T. Merritt.
A very imposing title...
...for a tombstone.
The orders are naturally contingent
to your acceptance, general.
You can refuse.
When do we Ieave?
You're going?
I've never refused to obey
an order, captain.
I never have either, sir...
...until now.
When do we Ieave?
Our previous orders were
to Ieave the Wheel...
...proceed to the moon...
...orbit for observation, make a
Ianding and return to base.
These orders have
now been cancelled.
We're not going to the moon.
Mr. Fenton has brought
us a new directive.
Our time of departure will be
1 1 :36 tomorrow morning.
Our destination, the planet Mars.
Now, that time of departure, both for
the outer trip from the Wheel to Mars
and for the return from Mars to
the Wheel, is most important.
We must arrive at the Martian orbit
at the exact time when it
is occupied by the planet.
Obviously, the same precision
of timing applies for our return.
Now, you five men have been chosen
after intensive competitive
For the past year,
you have been receiving
special training and instruction
for travel into outer space.
The ship, however, can accommodate
only two officers and three crew men.
I have been assigned
as commanding officer.
AII other service on this
trip will be voluntary.
Since Captain Merritt
has already volunteered,
there are only three berths Ieft open.
Two of you, then, are going
to be disappointed.
I can take it, sir.
Before I ask for volunteers, I should
Iike to state my own preferences.
You're all fine men.
Final selection will be made on
the basis of special qualifications.
- Sergeant Siegle.
- Yes, sir?
I don't think there's a man
on the Wheel
with Iess formal education
than you possess.
Yes, sir. I'm sure ignorant, sir.
Nor one with a better knowledge
of advanced electronics.
I should Iike to have you along.
Sergeant Imoto...'re a graduate of
Osaka University,
with two years of postgraduate work
at the Colorado School of Mines.
That knowledge is valuable.
Sergeant Fodor, two years of
medicine in Vienna, right?
You're both needed.
Before any of you accept, I should
Iike to make it unmistakably clear...
...that the dangers of this journey
are above and beyond anything
that the Space Corps
or your own governments
have any right to ask of you.
I can give you confounded Iittle reason
for this attempt to reach Mars...
...and no assurance at all
that it will even be successful.
It's my personal conviction that no
one but an idiot would volunteer.
And I shall strongly suspect
the sanity of anyone who does.
AII right.
We've all got it straight.
Who wants to go?
Is it permitted to disagree
with the general, sir?
Of course, sergeant.
In my humble opinion, sir, there is
an excellent reason for this voyage.
Well, suppose you tell us about it.
Some years ago, my country
chose to fight a terrible war.
It was bad. I do not defend it.
But there were reasons.
Somehow those reasons
are never spoken of.
To the Western world at that time,
Japan was a fairy-book nation.
Little people Iiving in a strange
Iand of rice-paper houses.
People who had almost no furniture...
...who sat on the floor
and ate with chopsticks.
The quaint houses of rice paper, sir,
they were made of paper because
there was no other material available.
And the winters in Japan are
as cold as they are in Boston.
And the chopsticks?
There was no metal for forks
and knives and spoons,
where slivers of wood could suffice.
So it was with the Iittle
people of Japan,
Iittle as I am now.
Because for countless generations,
we have not been able to produce
the food to make us bigger.
Japan's yesterday will be
the world's tomorrow.
Too many people and too Iittle Iand.
That is why I say, sir, there is
urgent need for us to reach Mars... provide the resources
the human race will need...
...if they are to survive.
That is also why I am most grateful
to be found acceptable, sir.
I volunteer.
Thank you, Sergeant Imoto.
You're not a Iittle man.
Anyone else?
Look, general, sir... wouldn't want these helpless
infants along on a mission Iike this.
Now, a couple of tough old
soldiers Iike ourselves...
You're not going, Mahoney.
I'm within me rights
to demand a reason.
You're 20 years too old.
Too old?
I am three months younger
than you, Sam Merritt,
and with twice the endurance.
Who was it carried you
on his back for seven miles
after the battle of BIoody Hill in 1952,
when all the breath you had Ieft in you
wasn't enough to blow out a candle
- in a Halloween pumpkin!
- Now, I said no, Mahoney.
Now, you angled your way onto
this Wheel against my specific orders,
and you're not gonna
bull your way onto the Spaceship.
And if you say another word,
I'm gonna have you thrown
into solitary for a month.
And tied to a wheelchair
when you get out.
I'II go, sir.
Well, sir...
Well, I'd hate to see everybody eat
with chopsticks, so... Check!
To you men, our thanks,
for your patience
and all your sacrifices.
The Earth rocket Ieaves in two hours.
Get packed, huh?
- Speechmaker.
- Chopstick.
Get down in front!
I'm mad about a sheik
I must have his embrace
When he's near me
Dear me
I'll tell him to his face
Oh, Ali Baba, be my baby
Take me by the hand
Maybe we'll make love, huh, maybe
On the desert sand
On the desert sand
Come into my tent
- We couldn't have that kind of Iuck.
- Ali Baba, sell your harem
Why pay all that rent?
- Or could we?
- Send your harem, harum-scarum
- After all, if there's Iife...
- Come into my tent
...there's always the female
of the species.
Forget the lady waiting in Persia
I'm the girl who really prefers you
- Yes, but what species?
- When a dreamy melody stirs you
- You just come to me
- Yeah.
Shimmy dancers doing it socko
Try to tempt you back in Morocco
But I'll chase them off of the block
Oh, you belong to me
Ali Baba, be my baby
I'm at your command
Maybe make some love, huh, maybe
On the desert sand
On the desert sand
On the desert sand
We interrupt this program
to take you now to the press room
of the Trans- World Communications
in New York City;
Ladies and gentlemen,
it has just been revealed
by the security office of the Supreme
International Space Authority
that within the next 24 hours,
exact time to be given later,
Man's first spaceship,
built and commanded
by General Samuel Merritt,
will blast off on the most
fabulous voyage
ever conceived
by the human mind;
Their destination is the planet Mars;
- Mars? You guys?
- Mars? Wow.
You want our autographs, peasants?
We take you now to our permanent
station on Mount Palomar;
There they are, ladies and gentlemen,
the satellite and the Spaceship;
The dream of all mankind come true;
The moment is almost here;
The moment for that creation
of the Wheel
to launch out into limitless space
to carry five heroic men
to a new planet and to immortality;
And now, ladies and gentlemen,
please stand by
while we close our circuits for the
final special event of the evening:
A private last look at the world for
the heroic men of the Wheel alone;
Take it away, Vienna;
So meine Gndigste, darf ich bitten
jetzt zum Mikrofon zu kommen;
Jetzt ist der Moment;
Bitte etwas nher, etwas nher;
This lady is Mrs; Heinz Fodor,
the mother of Andre Fodor;
So und jetzt bitte
sprechen Sie ganz ungeniert
da hinaus,
sehr liebenswrdig von Ihnen;
Andre, my boy,
this is your mother;
Can you hear me?
What you are doing must be good;
You are a good boy;
Please, Andre, be careful;
God watch over you, my boy,
and bring you back to me;
Darf ich bitten;
And now;;; Now we take you
back to New York;
Miss Rosalie McCann,
who has something to say
to Sergeant Siegle before he leaves;
- Hello, Jackie;
- Wow!
Mine, all mine!
Do you miss me, Jackie, baby?
I miss you, honeypot;
You've been away
a long time, Jackie,
but where love is concerned,
what's a year this way or that
when the flame of love is burning?
And it's burning, Jackie,
right here, forever;
In here, too, Rosie, baby.
For me, there never could be
anyone else but you;
Never, ever, ever;
- Rosie;
- In a minute; In a minute;
So I won't say goodbye, Jackie,
just farewell;
- Rosie; Hey, come on;
- Please, Sidney;
In a minute;
I gotta hurry now, Jackie;
- Mama's waiting;
- Mama!
Bye now;
Don't forget to bring your Rosie back
a nice souvenir from Mars;
Souvenir! You two-timing tomato!
For that Sidney I got a souvenir!
Come on out, you rat!
I'II fight you. I'II throttle you.
That's what I'II do.
Holding 20,000 miles per hour, sir.
- Set your gyros for Mars.
- Yes, sir.
On course, captain?
On course.
- You were saying, Sergeant Brooklyn?
- I was saying, Sergeant Imoto,
that the next time,
I am definitely gonna try the train.
You men can get out
of those couches now.
We won't need them again
till we Iand on Mars.
Ain't that just grand, sergeant?
Nothing to worry about
for millions and millions of miles.
Spaceship, Wheel calling;
Come in; Over;
Spaceship One to the Wheel.
Come in, Wheel. Over.
Hello, Spaceship One;
Professor Fenton for General Merritt;
General, sir.
- How are we doing, George?
- Good, general;
You're getting a bigger push from
Earth than we anticipated, however;
Is our cotangential orbit correct?
We're computing it now;
Keep your radio open;
We'll be in constant communication
as long as possible;
Incidentally, TWC has OK'd
relay broadcasts for morale;
Your boys like to hear
some mood music?
For this mood, there is no music.
- Stand by the radio.
- Yes, sir.
Sergeant Imoto, Sergeant Fodor,
go aft and check
the tailpipe temperatures.
Look at him. He's off again.
We went to a Iot of trouble
to develop those magnetized shoes.
Now, you get back into them
and keep them zipped up.
We'II have no unnecessary floating
aboard this ship.
No, sir.
General! Look!
Grab him.
Put him over there.
Don't just stand there.
Get some water.
Yes, sir.
Of all the stupid,
harebrained things to do.
Stowing away on a spaceship.
What a beating he must have taken
during the blastoff.
Wake up, you insubordinate Iunatic.
Thirty years in the Army
and still too brainless to obey an order.
Wake up, so I can have you shot.
He's coming to.
What are you doing aboard this ship?
You forgot your toothbrush.
I don't remember you
reading the Bible so often, sir.
It's the one book you never
really get through reading.
Man's every move, his every thought,
his every action
is in there somewhere,
recorded or predicted.
Every move except this one.
According to the Bible,
Man was created on the Earth.
Nothing is ever mentioned
of his going to other planets.
Not one blessed word.
At the time the Bible was written,
it wouldn't have made
much sense, would it?
Does it now?
The Biblical Iimitations
of Man's wanderings
are set down as being
the four corners of the Earth.
Not Mars or Jupiter or infinity.
The question is, Barney,
what are we?
...or invaders?
Of what, sir?
Of the sacred domain of God...
...his heavens.
To Man, God gave the Earth.
Nothing else.
But this taking of...
Of other planets...'s almost Iike an act of blasphemy.
But why?
They belong to no one else.
We don't know that.
But, Iook, sir, it couldn't be
just an accident
that at the very time
when Man's resources on Earth
are reaching an end,
Man develops the ability
to Ieave his own world
and seek replenishment
on other planets.
The timing is what fascinates me.
It's too perfect to be accidental.
Those other planets
might already be tenanted.
I don't think so.
The universe was put here
for Man to conquer.
I don't know.
I... I just don't know.
Why don't you try to get
a Iittle sleep, sir?
Huh? Oh.
Yes, I...
I think I will.
Good night, Barney.
Good night, Father.
Topside viewer's jammed.
Can't move it.
Sergeant Siegle, Sergeant Fodor,
get out there and free that pickup.
Out, sir?
But the ship is going
20,000 miles an hour, sir.
So are you, sergeant.
You won't fall off.
The operation's the same as it
would be on the Wheel. Get going.
- Yes, sir.
- Yes, sir.
Look at her.
If we ever get back,
you know what business
I'm really going into?
Real estate.
Cut out that chit-chat up there
and fix that pickup;
Yes, sir.
That's what I Iove about this job,
the privacy.
Try it now, sir.
It's OK now.
You men go forward.
Asteroid, dead astern.
Come on, Iet's get inside before
they throw something else at us.
Meteor fragments.
He's been hit!
Sergeant Siegle, return to the air Iock
at once. That's an order.
- Give him a hand.
- Yes, sir.
- Mahoney.
- Yes, sir.
Say, if anybody'd Iike
some hot coffee...
...I could heat up a couple of tins.
Get Iost, Fodor.
Get Iost, will you?
Get Iost.
Get Iost. Get Iost!
Take it easy, Iad.
He can't hear you.
Sir, shouldn't someone
go out there and...?
"O Lord,
"rebuke me not,
"nor chasten me in thy
hot displeasure.
"For thine arrows stick fast in me,
and thy hand presseth me sore.
"There is no soundness in my flesh
"because of thine anger,
"and there is no rest in my bones
"because of my sin.
"Make haste
"to help me, O Lord...
" salvation."
Wheel calling Spaceship;
Wheel calling Spaceship;
Come in, over;
The Wheel. They're trying to get us.
Spaceship to Wheel, we hear you.
We hear you. Come in.
- Lost them.
- No, it takes time.
Millions of miles.
Spaceship to Wheel, we hear you.
We hear you. Come in.
Come in. Over.
Spaceship to Wheel.
Come in, come in.
Getting bigger all the time,
isn't it, sir?
Yes, sergeant.
The planet and the blasphemy.
The what, sir?
Wheel calling Spaceship;
This is Fenton;
We've been calling you
constantly for weeks;
Come in; Over;
Spaceship to Wheel.
This is Captain Merritt.
Standby for the general.
General, sir, the Wheel.
Merritt speaking.
Here's the report:
Lost course for several days
due to near collision with asteroid.
But we can still reach
destination as plotted,
which may be Mars...
...or hell.
This voyage is a cursed abomination.
If it were possible, I'd come back now,
return the ship to Earth
- and blow it up!
- General, please.
Together with all plans
in existence for building another.
We're committing Man's
greatest sacrilege!
And we can't stop.
Professor, the general isn't well.
He's been suffering from severe
headaches and insomnia.
He's very tired, almost exhausted.
We Iost a crew member,
Andre Fodor, struck by a meteor.
The general took it very hard.
I'm sure it's only temporary.
He'II be all right, don't worry.
Everything else is under control.
Hey, you guys, we're in trouble.
- Off our course?
- No, the general.
You ought to hear the blast
he just threw at the Wheel.
Not just that Bible talk
he's been spouting Iately.
Crazy stuff.
Things Iike blowing up the ship.
Things Iike that.
Just Iike Cooper.
Listen, you slimy Iittle calumniator.
If you were one-tenth
the man the general is,
you'd be twice the man you are.
What he says or how he acts
is not for you to criticize.
And if I catch you doing it again,
I'II pull out your filthy tongue
and strangle you with it.
How about coming down to the parlor
and having a Iittle cup of tea
with a Ionesome old friend?
Look at her,
all red-faced and pouting,
Iike she might be angry with us.
And with us coming
all this way to visit her.
Aft viewer, Sergeant Siegle.
We've gotta release the boosters.
Hey, don't we need them tanks?
They're empty,
just excess baggage now.
The reserve tanks below
will take us back home.
Ready, sir.
Jettison boosters.
Look at it go.
That's what would happen to us
if we hit the atmosphere that fast.
AII right, men, positions for Ianding.
SIowing nicely, sir.
CIear Ianding ahead.
We mustn't. We can't.
We haven't the right.
General, stop!
What are you doing?
You'II kill us.
Hold your places
until the ship is raised.
The ship is upright, sir.
Good Ianding.
This is a good Ianding?
Any Ianding's a good Ianding.
Beautiful gravity.
Let's go below, shall we?
Feels Iike good soil.
Given water, I bet you can grow
anything here we grow on Earth.
Big things, maybe,
Iike in Jack the Beanstalk.
Be wonderful to try and see
what could happen.
I have some flower seed.
I been carrying them
ever since I Ieft Hawaii.
I was gonna try them on the moon,
but here in this soil...
You'd need a pipeline from the
Colorado River to water them.
Captain, Iook.
Must have damaged the pipes
when we Ianded.
Wait here.
General, stop!
"As wax melteth before the fire,
so Iet the wicked perish
- "at the presence of God."
- Father, stop it!
You're mad! Hydrazine and nitric acid
explode on contact!
We'II be blown to bits!
- Father!
- Stay back.
Dad, it's Barney.
PIease, you've got to Iisten to me.
Don't turn that valve!
Don't turn it!
Father, please.
Don't blame yourself.
- You killed him.
- No.
Your own father.
You murdered him!
Why, you no-good...
No, captain.
You'II not die, not now.
But when we get back,
and we'II get back,
we've got a date, you and me,
with a court-martial.
And I'II be the witness.
And it'II be a rope for you, captain.
And I hope they make it slow,
very slow,
so I can watch you kick.
No signs of water.
Not even bugs or worms.
They ought to give this planet
back to the...
Who do you give it back to?
No people.
What water we have Ieft is our Iife.
Every drop must be rationed.
No washing, no heat.
Look, captain...
...why couldn't we kick off
with what we got Ieft?
We could, except for one slight detail.
The Earth wouldn't be there
when we arrived.
How very unpleasant.
So how Iong we gotta stick around
this crummy planet?
How old are you, Sergeant Siegle?
- Just turned 29.
- When you turn again,
you can start packing.
You and Sergeant Mahoney
start draining the pipes
of the heating system.
Well, he says we gotta
squeeze the water.
So Iet's get to squeezing.
It's gonna be a cold, dry winter.
God rest ye merry gentlemen
Let nothing you dismay
Remember Christ;;;
;;;our Savior
Was born on Christmas Day
Call the Wheel again, sergeant.
What for?
To wish them a merry Christmas?
Spaceship to Wheel.
Come in, Wheel.
How Iong you gonna
keep doing this?
We ain't heard from
the Wheel in months.
And supposing
they answer, so what?
Maybe we ask for room service...
...and have them send up
some ice water.
We've done what no men
in the world have done before us.
We've got to Iet them know
before it's too Iate.
If it's humanly possible,
we've got to report.
Report what?
That the operation was a big success,
but the patients are dying
on a Iousy, dried-up ball
- in the corner pocket of nowhere?
- We could report a murder, captain.
I've told you everything
that happened, sergeant.
Yes, captain...
...that you have.
And you can tell it to me
from now until doomsday,
but don't forget, I was there and
I saw everything with me own eyes.
Spaceship calling the Wheel.
Spaceship to Wheel.
The general wasn't crazy,
he was right.
We asked for it.
There's a curse on this ship
and everybody in it.
You can Ieave that stuff
back on Earth...
...but it don't operate
past a thousand-mile Iimit.
Only God can make a tree.
Where is it?
Where's the trees and the flowers
and the grass?
Where's the water?
You hear me?
Where's the water?
Hey, fellas, Iook!
- Snow!
- Boy, you can hit me with a snowball!
- Merry Christmas, boys!
- Open the hatch!
OK, captain, let her rip;
Leave that, Mahoney.
We won't take anything
unessential to the voyage.
Everything OK up there, sir?
AII secure. By this time tomorrow,
we'II be on our way home.
Just about finished, captain.
I think these soil and mineral samples
will prove that Iife is possible on Mars.
It can be done, sir.
AII the elements are in those sacks.
Even air and water, in other forms.
Until now, this Iittle planet
has been alone...
...friendless, all drawn up into itself.
So it's crusty, dried-up
and unyielding.
But with patience and
understanding and hard work,
it could be made to blossom.
I wish I had your faith, Imoto.
Hey, fellas! Come!
Captain, come! Look!
Look. Look.
It grew. A flower.
A seed from Earth growing here.
Look at it. A flower on Mars.
It is a flower.
Hey, captain, the ship is tilted.
We won't be able to take off.
That sand, Iook at it. It's draining.
Must be caves or crevices
This whole section is honeycombed.
- We drilled into a Iot of pockets.
- Caves, caverns.
If we could crack them open,
the sand would pour in Iike water.
We might draw off enough
to Iower that side of the ship.
Straighten her up?
It's possible. But how do we
crack open the cavities?
With the engines. We blast.
Hammer the ground with the rockets.
Great. But what happens if we open
some cracks on the wrong side?
We fall over.
We've got exactly 14 minutes
to come up with a miracle
and say goodbye to this planet,
or we'II never Ieave it.
- You were saying, sergeant?
- I'm sold.
Punch it, captain.
Again, sir.
It's moving.
It's working.
Try it again, captain.
That's it. I don't dare to...
We're perpendicular.
Protect yourselves.
We're blasting off.
You did it.
A date is a date, sergeant.
It was a glorious way the general died.
Sacrificing his Iife as he did
to bring his ship and his crew
safely to a Ianding
on the rocky desert of a new planet.
That's the way
the history books will tell it.
Won't they, captain?
A fitting end for a grand soldier.
For the man who conquered space.
Would you be caring
for a cup of tea, captain?