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In flying saucers 

"When an armed and threatening power lands uninvited in our capital, we don't meet him with tea and cookies!" --General Hanley (Morris Ankrum), Earth vs. the Flying Saucers

Indeed, we do not. In this 1956 sci-fi thriller, Dr. Russell Marvin (Hugh Marlowe, The Day the Earth Stood Still) and his cronies attempt to protect Earth from those pesky extra-terrestrials via Operation Skyhook, a program replete with rockets, artillery and plenty of probing. But when a UFO is hit by military fire, a message is delivered to the crafty doctor, foretelling that the Earth will fall into alien hands within 60 days. Dr. Marvin quickly develops a sensational anti-magnetic beam that is successful in knocking down the UFOs, yet is less adept at felling them into anything other than national landmarks. Witness this hilarious and entertaining example of vintage sci-fi which prompted Tim Burton's less-pleasing parody Mars Attacks (1996) at 7 p.m., Friday, June 6, at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences, 11 W. Jones St. Free. Info: www.naturalsciences.org

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