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"'Planet of the Dinosaurs' is a typical sci-fi cheapie from 1979 starring nobody of any note. A spaceship explodes (in a visually amusing 'special' effect) and the survivors end up on a hostile planet ruled by dinosaurs, hence the title. The acting is fairly awful (particularly among male cast members) and the spaceship effects are fairly laughable, but the dinosaurs are done with stop motion (by Douglas Beswick), and are actually amazingly well done. In fact, they are about as good as stop motion dinosaurs can be done. For that alone the movie is worth seeing, but the interplay with the humans is priceless (wait till you see some of the human vs. dinosaur battle scenes.) In fact the humans are as bad as the dinosaurs are good. Interestingly everyone is wearing hideous 1970s one piece disco survival ensemble uniforms, which make the downright homely cast appear even dowdier. The only remotely attractive human in the film is the gorgeous Mary Appleseth, who is, unfortunately, eaten by creatures early on. This film is also a favorite of mine for a totally different reason. Footage of the spaceship and dinosaurs was bought for $500 and used in the appallingly hilarious 'Galaxy of the Dinosaurs' in 1992, with additional footage shot on location in Mogadore, Ohio (behind the producer's parents house, if memory serves me correctly.) It is available in the "Bad Movie Police" series on DVD from Amazon, and it is highly recommended as well as this, the original.This is a type of movie not seen anymore. Bad acting and varying quality scenery and effects combine to make this a quintessential low budget sci-fi film from the 1970s. It's good in its own unique way, so go ahead and check it out."
This movie is PERFECT!
lektrotek | La Mesa, CA United States | 09/21/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Sometimes production companies try to make a b-movie, and it's no secret that it's supposed to be funny. Those moves are lame. Planet of the Dinosaurs, however, is AWESOME. Each line of the horrible dialog is delivered with all the intensity of a Knight Rider-era Hasselhoff. You actually get the impression that they were trying to make a decent movie, and that makes it even more hilarious. I first saw this on tv when I was a kid. I was excited to see that it was out on DVD! The dinosaurs are most likely totally innacurate and out of scale if you asked a paleontolgist, but see, these are SPACE dinosaurs! ROCK! The best part is the plot. They crash, some of them die, and then they never find a way off the planet! It just ends with a scene of them washing their clothes in a pond! Their space suits are rad, and the dude's beard is sweet! Easily worth 5 stars."
Not so special after all. . .
Kevin R. Pyrtle | NC | 09/29/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I've loved this film ever since I was a kid and, after some good press, was really looking forward to this DVD. Retromedia drops the ball again, however, in providing an artifacty interlaced transfer crudely blown up to fit the extra resolution of a 16:9 enhanced frame.
Even worse, new digital special effects have been added in at random and for no discernible purpose. The audio commentary is a wonderful asset, but it isn't worth paying $13 - stick to the old Goodtimes DVD. It was sub-par, sure, but at least it kept the film intact."
Shawn | Arizona | 01/14/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm going to start by saying this- if you don't like really, really cheesy, bad movies, then you're not going to like "Planet of the Dinosaurs".
On the other hand, if you can appreciate a really bad movie for how good it is underneath all the cheese, terrible acting, and hideous special effects, then this movie is probably the penultimate late 1970's cheesy sci-fi horror pic.
The intrepid crew of "The Odyssey" (played by an ensemble cast of nobody you've ever heard of) crash lands on distant planet populated by fierce dinosaurs. Armed only with a few lasers (with are terribly ineffective against dinosaurs) and their wits, they must learn to survive on this harsh new world.
The special effects in this movie are actually not that bad for the genre. The stop-motion dinosaurs are a little silly sometimes, but overall the stop-motion is pretty good. The movie actually won a "Best Special Effects" award at a Science Fiction festival for it's special effects, so you know that at one time they were pretty good.
The acting is horrible. But not horrible in a "Matt Damon" kind of way... more like horrible in a "this is the best movie I've ever seen" way. You'll probably have to pause the movie after a few choice lines, to give yourself time to laugh the tears out of your eyes.
The music is... interesting. It fits the movie pretty well, but it's not really music so much as unpleasant noises strung together to form basic melodies. Granted, it's perfect for the movie, but if you ever heard it somewhere else, you'd be convinced there was a dying cat nearby.
I don't know if you've ever seen "Mystery Science Theater 3000", but this movie is basically like one of the ones they watch on that show. If you like that show (and those types of movies), you'll probably love "Planet of the Dinosaurs". Personally, as someone with a great deal of experience in bad B-movies from the late 1970's, I am firm in my belief that "Planet of the Dinosaurs" is and shall remain the best bad movie ever made."
Good B-grade fun, but what's with the "official" description
T. Weber | USA | 08/07/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"My sister and I have long had a soft place in our hearts for this late-70's sci-fi effort. The back of the DVD hypes it as a bold space adventure with spectacular effects and a gripping plot. I don't know what movie they were watching when they wrote that, but it wasn't Planet of Dinosaurs. It tries so hard to be deep and profound, following its sad little band of stranded astronauts as they try to survive on a prehistoric world, that you have to feel sorry for it. Nice dino FX (for the time) aside, this is a B-grade work all the way, with terrible acting, lousy lines, pointless characters who mostly exist to provide the local wildlife with ample fodder, and hilariously lame music. If, like us, you enjoy laughing at a good bad movie, this is a great pick. If only MST3K had taken a crack at this one..."