"Keep Watching the Skies," the perfect pre-Halloween watch, is now available to stream for free on the Irish Film Institute's IFI Archive Player.
Inspired by the American Horror films from the late 1950s, in a remote American lake, a fisherman dislodges a canister that has been jettisoned from a flying saucer.
A teenager and his girlfriend manage to convince the police of the existence of an all-consuming creature that has emerged from the canister, but it’s not long before all hell breaks loose and the creature from space consumes everything in its path.
"Keep Watching the Skies" is a part of the IFI's Roy Spence Collection.
The Irish Film Institute’s Roy Spence Collection
Roy Spence is an award-winning amateur filmmaker. For the past 50 years, Spence has been making and screening a series of remarkable and sometimes eccentric films in his cinema in Comber, Co Down. The films span many genres from sci-fi, horror to folk-life documentaries shot between 1965 and 1986.
Born in Co Down in 1944, Roy Spence and his twin brother, Noel, became fans of the American science-fiction B-movies of the 1950s and of the work of directors such as Ed Wood, Jack Arnold, William Castle, and Roger Corman. The pair spent their youth at their local cinemas, in particular, the Tudor Cinema in Bangor, and thus began their filmmaking journey with Roy as director and special effects creator, and Noel acting as distributor.
As Northern Ireland descended into the Troubles of the 1970s, Spence built his house and private film studio, surrounded by his collection of antique Wurlitzer jukeboxes. His work was distributed mainly via small film clubs and regional and national film circuits, and it often appeared in Movie Maker – a popular magazine dedicated to small and medium gauge filmmaking.
While Spence has never had his work theatrically released, the two brothers opened two cinemas, the Tudor and the Excelsior in Comber each becoming destinations for cinephiles across the world.
Over the past decade, there has been a renewed appreciation of his work and his films are considered to be of national significance. Through a joint initiative set by the British Film Institute, Northern Ireland Screen and the Irish Film Institute, a curated selection of 22 films from this collection is now available on the IFI Archive Player. His entire filmography is now preserved at the IFI Irish Film Archive in Dublin.
"Keep Watching the Skies" is published here thanks to the Irish Film Institute (IFI), who IrishCentral has partnered up with throughout 2022 to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collection entails. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.
To watch more historic Irish footage, visit the IFI Archive Player, the Irish Film Institute’s virtual viewing room that provides audiences around the globe free, instant access to Irish heritage preserved in the IFI Irish Film Archive. Irish Culture from the last century is reflected through documentaries, animation, adverts, amateur footage, feature films, and much more. You can also download the IFI Archive Player App for free on iPhone, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Roku.
IrishCentral has partnered up with the IFI throughout 2022 to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collections entail. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.