The tale begins when a mysterious spacecraft lands near the White House, frightening the residents of Washington, D.C. A pair of alien beings, Klaatu and Gort, emerge from the spacecraft, and are immediately fired upon by a soldier. Klaatu, despite his injury, announces that he has a very important message for all of humankind. The message, however, cannot be delivered until all of the world’s leaders agree to meet with him. The extra-terrestrial’s request is denied, and he is sent to a hospital to recover from his newly acquired injury. Soon, Klaatu escapes and takes refuge in a boarding house where a widow and her son take pity on him. Seen by many as a political, religious and humanitarian effort, the film is based on Harry Bates’ story, "Farewell to the Master," and features a thoroughly eerie soundtrack from longtime Alfred Hitchcock collaborator, Bernard Hermann.