Invaders From Mars (1953 – Review)

Invaders From Mars

Jimmy Hunt as David Maclean
Helena Carter as Dr. Pat Blake, MD
Arthur Franz as Dr. Stuart Kelston
Morris Ankrum as Col. Fielding
Leif Erickson as George MacLean
Hillary Brooke as Mary MacLean

One of the first generation of 1950’s alien invasion movies. Almost a classic. Almost a failure. Almost
unforgettable. Almost Famous. Excuse me… This movie predates Invasion of the Body Snatchers, yet shares some of the same themes. Those themes seem to be paranoia and fear of Commies. Instead of dwelling on them, the movie changes course midstream and become a aliens kidnapping children and women movie, where the military might of the USA must destroy those dirty Martian Commies and make outer space safe to become the fifty-first state. The kid in this movie is one of the few non-annoying children in science fiction movies you will come across. That is a big plus, as science fiction children are the most annoying children ever to grace this planet of ours. I hope that the Earth is not judged one day by alien races that have only older science fiction movies as their sole source of information, they would destroy this planet before the second reel.

Continue reading

Devil Girl From Mars (Review)

Devil Girl From Mars

Patricia Laffan as Nyah
Hugh McDermott as Michael Carter
Peter Reynolds as Robert/Albert Simpson
Adrienne Corri as Doris
Joseph Tomelty as Professor Arnold Hennessey

Let’s kick off Mars March with a hot one! This 1954 festival of cheese has an angry woman from Mars, escaped convict, cripple disintegration, and a robot that will make you think your refrigerator has sprouted legs and is making 1950’s B movies. I love that robot. This film is based on a play, and it shows. The set is basically one place (except for a brief drop off in the ship or right outside the inn) and the dialog is pure play. Even if your only exposure to play was being dragged to high school drama plays by your friends, you will recognize the styling, the explanations, the forced reasons for characters to exit the stage so the plot can happen.

Continue reading

Tarantula (Review)


John Agar as Dr. Matt Hastings
Mara Corday as Steve (Stephanie) Clayton
Leo G. Carroll as Prof. Gerald Deemer
Clint Eastwood as Jet Squadron Leader

Tarantula immediately sets the tone for it’s 1950’s sci-fi-ness by a bleak opening involving a dying mutant in the desert. Over the course of this movie the White Hero and Cold Female Scientist will work together to defeat the Monster Menace caused by the Old Mad Scientist in what would be a cookie cutter movie. It came out in 1955, one year after Gojira but one year before Godzilla with Steve Martin hit the US shores. How much that movie influenced this is unknown to me, but this is a pretty well made for the time giant monster movie on par with some of the earlier movies in the daikaiju genre. It even features a young Clint Eastwood as the leader of a jet squadron that is sent to send the spider to Spider Hell. This movie does differ in the spider is a real spider blown up to enormous size as opposed to a man in suit, so it is similar to other classics such as Giant Gila Monster.

Continue reading

Catwomen of the Moon (Review)

Catwomen of the Moon



Victor Jory as Kip Reissner
Marie Windsor as Helen Salinger
Sonny Tufts as Laird Grainger
Carol Brewster as Alpha

From the 1950s comes this harrowing vision of the future. Well, maybe not harrowing. More like terribly inaccurate, misogynist, and low budget.

From the opening with standard 50’s Narrator/Philosopher droning on about man reaching the stars: “Why must we wait…why not now?” we are in for a rocket ride of sci-fi “fun” (shame). The intrepid crew of Moon Rocket 4 wake up on their hammocks as the first people in space. They are all white, but there is an actual woman on board!

Our Crew

Captain Laird Grainger — Jerk.
Kip Reissner — Co-Pilot. In love with…
Helen Salinger — Navigator, and an actual woman, loves Kip but is with Laird.
Walt Walters — Engineer, mustachioed and wants to make a buck on everything, especially moon souvenirs
Doug Smith — Radio Operator, young.

Continue reading