While tracking a hi-tech rocket named XZ, a group of scientists discover and research a loud wailing sound from outer space, only to deduce from the rocket’s explosion, and the intuitive behaviour of animals across the globe, that a series of meteors are coming to destroy Earth. Worse still, it is possible that the moon may intercept it, causing a detrimental effect on the tides and flooding the coasts. As a state of emergency is declared the world over, tempers fray and the scientists find it difficult to work with one another. Eventually however, some quick logical thinking (ignoring major plot holes) saves the day, and our heroes are able to breathe easy again.
In spite of the connotations given by its schlocky title, clumsy dubbing and overreliance on stock footage interstices, The Day The Sky Exploded isn’t a terrible work. Horror legend Mario Bava’s photography is, for the most part, rather impressive, the deliberately intermittent video feed from the rocket being perhaps the most forward-thinking aspect. The set design, while not groundbreaking, is suitable and believable. Some elements baffle however, such as the static interactions between characters (astronaut John notably never kisses his wife) which break from the genre and never really amount to any conclusion. It is remarkable also that, between the important scientific developments and shower of gloppy sound effects, the space crew manage to give enough attention to the control room dog, Geiger, often completely interrupting a significant development to pat him lovingly on the head.