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"Saturn 3" 1980

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Adam (Kirk Douglas) and Alex ( Farrah Fawcett) are scientist (?) living on a space station on one of Saturns's moons- they spend their day jogging, playing with a cute dog and having sex- they act like they are in a beach house in Malibu not in outer space.  The May-December couple's fun is interrupted by the arrival of Benson ( Harvey Keitel with dubbed voice by Roy Dotrice) an obvious psycho who brings along Hector- a robot who goes out of control once he gets a look at Farah in short shorts.  John Barry the production designer had written the original story and was suppose to direct but because of creative differences was replaced by Stanley Donen.  Mr Donen shows off his MGM musical heritage by staging a space launch as if it was Busby Berkley production number.  The effects are good for that time but feel very generic now.  Hector the robot has a cool body but I wonder who came up with ridiculous flimsy head which could easily be knocked off .  The movie feels truncated we never get too see the effect of the drug when the couple take it- which Mr Donen could have staged as dream ballet.  My favorite shot in the trailer is Miss Fawcett wearing a Barbarella like costume which does not appear in the final cut of the  film-( maybe that was part of the dream ballet? )

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Its dismaying to think a production designer could write a little garden-of-eden symbolism like this and get it produced with the likes of Donen at the helm; and top talent like Kirk Douglas and Harvey Kietel. Definitely does not happen these days.

Hard to believe, but Keitel and Douglas both made at least two other SF romps between them; both of them better. I refer to 'The Final Countdown' and 'Death Watch', respectively.

Former fashion model Fawcett (who also appeared in one other SF than this, namely "Logan's Run") had a nice body but not enough to carry this flick; (not chesty enough) and yeah the robot Hector had to have a head that could be knocked off. "Robby" the Robot --as I recall--also had an unprotected top.

Overall: just an oddity, a throwaway film riding on the wave of Luc/Berg. But from a different industry, an industry where wild ideas and small ideas --and wild small ideas--could still get made. Not so in this era.

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