The War of the Worlds (also known in promotional material as H. G. Wells' The War of the Worlds) is a 1953 American Technicolor science fiction film from Paramount Pictures, produced by George Pal, directed by Byron Haskin, and starring Gene Barry and Ann Robinson.
The film is a loose adaptation of the H. G. Wells novel of the same name, and is the first of five feature film adaptations of his famous 1898 novel concerning an invasion of Earth from the planet Mars. Large meteorite-spaceships come crashing down all over the Earth, disgorging manta ray-shaped Martian war machines armed with fearsome heat-ray and "skeleton" beam energy weapons; they slowly begin the rout of humanity wherever they move.
The War of the Worlds was deemed culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant in 2011 by the United States Library of Congress and was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry. The Registry noted the film's release during the early years of the Cold War and how it used "the apocalyptic paranoia of the atomic age." The Registry also cited the film's special effects, which at its release were called "soul-chilling, hackle-raising, and not for the faint of heart."
(Summary from Wikipedia)