The Crawling Eye (1958)
The Crawling Eye, also known as The Trollenberg Terror, frightened me as a child while watching the film when it was originally released in theaters. Imagining gigantic, tentacled eye creatures from another planet coming down from the mountains to enslave mankind was scary. This diorama from Lunar Models by Ed Eilbacher captures a key scene when the creatures were on top of the observatory and grabbed one of the people. In this actual scene in the film you can see the fake human figure in the creature’s tentacle and this diorama accurately captures the fakeness of the little human figure. The kit I received did not have the parts for the triangular side piece so these were made out of plasticard and blended in with the rest of the piece.
The Trollenberg Terror is the title of both a 1956 “Saturday Serial” ITV UK television programme and a better-known 1958 black-and-white science fiction film. The latter is also known as The Crawling Eye, Creature from Another World, The Creeping Eye, and The Flying Eye. Both versions are directed by Quentin Lawrence and feature Laurence Payne as journalist Philip Truscott, who investigates unusual accidents occurring at a Swiss resort. The film also stars Forrest Tucker as United Nations troubleshooter Alan Brooks. Peter Key wrote the story for the serial, and Jimmy Sangster scripted the film version based on Keys’ story. It was the final film to be produced by Southall Studios, one of the earliest pioneer film studios in the UK.