(allepaca) from TEMPE, AZ
Reviewed on 10/30/2009...
Gawd, what a disappointment. "wide-screen" or not, it's a waste of time. Somehow, I'd had fond memories from my teen years about this flick... I must have been pretty drunk or stoned (or both) at the time. Maybe I saw it at a drive-in on a hot date, and only really saw a few parts? Or maybe my teenaged libido just reacted to the then-rare excitement of seeing a brief glimpse or two of Jenny Aguttar's naked body, I don't know, but something possessed me to try to relive some past joys by buying this thing. What a mistake.
The only cast member who could even act his way out of a paper bag was Peter Ustinov, who must still be spinning in his grave to have ever been associated with this silly piece of tripe. And could that cardboard cutout really be the same Michael York who was so effective in Cabaret? As for Jordan and Aguttar... well, one never really expects much from them anyway. But it is actually painful to see Fawcett stumbling her way through this early movie role... you can almost hear the director yelling "look just like the poster, Farrah-- just smile, don't move!"
The props/effects are almost entirely laughable-- a "killer robot" who appears to be made from tinfoil, "energy guns" that look like halloween sparklers, fight and chase sequences that would fit right into any c-rated 60's Japanese monster movie, etc. The whole thing actually seems like more of a spoof on sci-fi flix; but sadly, it isn't... at least, not intentionally.
It's hard to believe this stinker came out the same year they were filming Star Wars, and the advent of the "new" sci-fi era... it really belongs back in the early 50's, with such "classics" as Invasion of the Green Saucer People from Another Planet. I guess this might serve as a pretty good party movie-- the guests could all get trashed and laugh their butts off at the sheer stupidity of the writing & acting.
With the exception of some of the "Washington in ruins" backdrops toward the end of the film, and maybe Ustinov's quirky character, the ONLY good thing about this movie is the wonderful score by Jerry Goldsmith-- one of the first real film composers to effectively use electronic effects merged with the usual orchestral arrangements. It would be worth it to search out this soundtrack on a cd, so's not to be distracted by the inanity of the movie itself.
Don't waste your time with this arfer. If you want to see some much better sci-fi's from that general time period, try Soylent Green, Rollerball, Planet of the Apes, or Silent Running (I won't even mention 2001-- that's in a class by itself). Hell, even Westworld and Zardoz were far better than this bit of shallow fluff.
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