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This was a movie in color 50s 60s maybe 70s. It opened with two men, maybe scientists, who were in an office or at a home, and who were compelled by a telepathic force to build a device - they had no idea what they were building. It turned out to be some sort of screen on the wall - I seem to remember the keystone shape of the Heinz 57 shield - and it either functioned as a communication device, a teleportation device, or both. The two find themselves on another planet and during one scene they see a demonstration of a laser generator that burns a hole through a very thick steel plate. I don't remember much else, including what the aliens wanted...

marked as duplicate by Edlothiad, Buzz, Organic Marble, amflare, Community Dec 29 '17 at 1:46

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    This Island Earth (1955) was my first thought, too. – John Thompson Dec 28 '17 at 5:39
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    You are all amazing. This is the movie - sorry the question was a duplicate - my memory of the plot was not sufficient or accurate enough to realize that! – ArlennS Dec 28 '17 at 17:05