Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Kim Milford, Cheryl Smith, Gianni Russo, Ron Masak, Dennis Burkley
Director: Michael Rae
Genres: Action & Adventure, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Billys never been able to fit in where he lives suddenly thats not a problem anymore. A desert exploration leads to an explosive discovery for billy his own personal laser gun. Each time billy fires the laser he begins to ... more »
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Christopher M. (GilesGoatboy) from FAIRFAX, VA
Reviewed on 4/10/2011...
Stunning in its sheer audacity.....this low budget film, though released in the 70's is a product of the 60's and hearkens back to the genre of the great 50's sci-fi films which were nearly all low-budget B films that produced such classics as "The Incredible Shrinking Man", Invasion of the Body Snatchers", "The Day the Earth Stood Still" and "Invaders from Mars" to name a few.
The simple premise of what happens when unlimited power suddenly falls into the hands of somebody who is emotionally and psychologically immature is briliantly played out in the story of Billy, a sweet but sulky young surfer dude with a lot of powerful resentment and rebellion building up in him.
When he fnds the mysterious weapon left behind in the desert by alien visitors the film effectively takes on the quality of an impending train wreck about to happen as we witness the gradual transformation of sweet young Billy turning into something more and more monstrous, hurtling toward his inevitabe tragedy.
The filmakers wisely give the aliens a low profile and keep them in the background as it is not their story, but primarily ours.(and Billy's) They look like man-sized turtles with no shells and they are quite effective.
It is strange how every critic who pans this film still admits that it's fascinating. As one reviewer cogently put it "I'd rather watch this than Lucas-Spielberg stuff" because it is less ponderous and pretentious and a lot more fun.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
John H. (johnniemidnite) from LYNNWOOD, WA
Reviewed on 4/2/2011...
This is a great low budget sci-fi flick that is highly enjoyable as a good fun time. What kid wouldn't want to find a laserblaster and go out an destroy all the jerks who made his life miserable and then just destroying stuff for the heck of it. Cool music, stop action animation and great effects. Screen greats Roddy McDowall and Keenan Wynn have cameos in the film. Features the screen debut of actor Eddie Deezen. I'd rather watch this than any Spielberg / Lucas stuff any day.
Not Really Much of a Blast
Michael R Gates | Nampa, ID United States | 01/28/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Two extraterrestrials are in pursuit of another in the Arizona desert, and when they catch up to "him," they disintegrate all but the other's gun-like weapon. They seem uninterested in the weapon, however, and leave it behind. Enter young Billy, stereotypical teenage pariah. In an effort to escape his troubles for awhile, Billy wanders into said desert and--you guessed it!--stumbles across the powerful weapon left behind by the murdered extraterrestrial. It isn't long, of course, before he learns how to successfully wield and fire this laser-like weapon. Then, bent on meting out his revenge to those who shun him, the misguided youngster takes the weapon back to town and proceeds to blast just about everything in sight. There is a price, however, for joining the intergalactic NRA: When Billy uses the weapon, it temporarily makes his skin greenish and his teeth pointy and sharp. And worse, these changes seem to be edging more and more towards permanency each time the weapon is used. Meanwhile, back at the cosmic ranch, the aliens that own the weapon--probably kin to the murdered bloke--are aware of Billy's activities, and they are on their way to Earth to reclaim their property. Will Billy finally overcome the addictive allure of the laser weapon, or will he permanently mutate into his demonic, laser-wielding alter ego? Will the aliens get there in time to save Billy, or will they be forced to commit euthanasia and put Billy the Mutant out of his misery?Of all of the pieces of cinematic flotsam that were churned up in the wake of the highly successful (and much, much better) STAR WARS (1977), 1978's LASERBLAST is truly among the worst. The film suffers from the lack of a coherent and comprehensible plot, and the bit of story that is there is thin, cliché, and amounts to little more than a cheap teen empowerment fantasy. Michael Rae's direction is erratic at best, non-existent at worst, and this only adds to the confusion of the lousy plot. Terry Bowen's cinematography makes everything look abysmally flat and washed-out, and most of the acting is as flat as the cinematography. The few exceptions to the latter are the performances of the beautiful Cheryl Smith, who plays Billy's girlfriend; venerable and longtime character actor Keenan Wynn, who has a minor role here as a military type; and master thespian (and genre regular) Roddy McDowall, who appears here in a bit part as a physician. Alas, the skills of these talented actors are wasted here, though, since their performances get lost within the muck and mire that is LASERBLAST.There are a few bright spots in the production values of this dull piece of celluloid. While not quite on a level with the work of master animator Ray Harryhausen, Dave Allen's stop-motion animation of the extraterrestrials is really pretty cool. Fortunately, Allen would go on to do FX work for better films like 1981's THE HOWLING and 1989's HONEY, I SHRUNK THE KIDS, to name but a few. Also very cool is the alien spaceship in LASERBLAST. The model was designed and built by Greg Jein, who also worked the on the models for CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND (1977) and STAR WARS (1977) at about the same time. Jein has gone on to do miniature and FX work for both the theatrical and television incarnations of STAR TREK, as well as for other notable films and TV shows.In spite of the few minor highlights in LASERBLAST, the film is best avoided by serious filmgoers who prefer flicks with quality writing, talented actors, and skilled filmmakers. The DVD from Full Moon does offer a few bonus features. One is a behind-the-scenes featurette; the other is a very enjoyable supplemental featurette with tons of campy trailers for even cheesier films. Indeed, this bonus material is much more entertaining than the feature film. But unless you're really interested in what happens on the set of an awful film, or unless you're a collector of kooky film trailers, these extras are hardly incentive to purchase the disc."
So Bad It's Beautiful!
K. Brown | Walnut, Ca USA | 11/12/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The funny thing about B-Movies is that they become campy classics only when they were made with somewhat serious intentions. We crack up over "Plan 9 From Outer Space," but when they crank out contrived spoofs like "Attack of the Killer Tomatoes," we grow bored.
Laserblast is one of those classics in the spirit of Ed Wood Jr. Released in 1978, it stars the late Kim Milford (best known for popularizing the role of Rocky Horror in the Roxy version of "The Rocky Horror Show") as Billy, a handsome but shy and dysfunctional young man who comes across this groovy space gun that blows people & things to smithereens. There is a catch to this magical zapping-machine: with each blast, poor Billy gradually turns from the sweet & shy guy to a physically grotesque and murderous creature who begins taking out his enemies (not to mention a few innocent bystanders). Being that the film takes place the year after "Star Wars" was released, Billy even takes his aggression out on a small billboard advertising the film!
All this time these Claymation Space Creatures are cruising about in a spaceship, monitoring the earthly activity of their potent zapping machine, speaking in a way-out tongue that is never revealed.
As one who enjoys spotting familiar celeb faces in B-Movies, I had a field day with this film as the cast includes Roddy Mc Dowell (it always interested me how he appeared in as many campy films as he did quality films), Keenan Wynn, Gianni Russo (best known as Carlo in "The Godfather"), Eddie Deezen (character actor known for his ultra-nerd roles in movies like "Wargames," and most recently in "Polar Express"), and the late Cheryl "Rainbeaux" Smith, who appeared in scores of B-Movies throughout the 1970s. The movie was directed by Michael Rae, who went on to direct.....uh, nothing else ever again.
On a "bad movie scale" of 1 through 10 (1 being SO bad that it doesn't even pass as a fun B-Movie experience, 10 being a wonderful viewing experience because it's so bad!) I give Laserblast a 10+!!! You can pick up this DVD for a very reasonable price, so check out these Clay Creatures and their Monster-Making Laser Gun!
C. J. Elder | Santa Maria, CA United States | 12/08/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I pretty much agree with ALL the reviewers here. This is a bad cheesy movie which I enjoyed for some strange reason. It's hard to describe, but this movie makes cheesy film-making an art form. It probably is for nostalgics only, but who knows. I saw it once when I was very young and it stuck in my mind until I accidentally stumbled across it on amazon.com 24 years later. As soon as I saw it listed here, I just HAD to get it, and I wasn't disappointed. It is what it is, and I like it for that."