Fire In The Sky & “That Scene”

By Jordan Gerdes

Some films have scenes that stick with us through time. Little things, often uncanny fears, that resonate so deeply with us that when we see them, it is ingrained on our psyche. I know when I was little, I was terrified of the heart ripping scene from Temple of Doom. But today, I want to point out another sequence that seems to have affected almost everyone who saw it.

In 1993, Fire In The Sky was released. This sci fi biopic follows Travis Walton’s legendary alien abduction in Arizona in 1975. While the film itself is a solid science fiction story, whether you believe it or not, it is the film’s depiction of abduction itself that is the real horror here. The special effects were coordinated by Industrial Light and Magic, a division of George Lucas and Lucasfilms.

What make’s this sequence so terrifying is the practical quality of the scene. Awakening in a strange place, Travis Walton, played by D.B. Sweeney, is thrust upon a lab table, and greeted by extraterrestrial beings. The aliens themselves are particularly horrible, with large heads and beady black eyes, looking at Walton with disdain.

From here, it becomes a full body horror segment, as Travis is cocooned, asphyxiated, and intubated with alien technology. His eyes are held open, as white liquid is poured into the ocular cavity, with the final scene showing the slow advance of a massive needle aiming right for his eye.

It’s an absolutely batshit sequence and one that pops up every now and again on social media, prompting nightmares and PTSD for all of us that saw it on TV growing up. However, it is one of the great science fiction/horror scenes and one that is severely underrated. It’s definitely worth tracking down, even if only to scare yourself once more.

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