Sign in to follow this  
scsu1975

RICH'S B (AND WORSE) SCI-FI THREAD

183 posts in this topic

(the restoration of this thread continues)

 

Day the World Ended (1955)

(originally posted here:  http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/25504-day-the-world-ended-1955/)

 

Decent sci-fi from Roger Corman, about a few survivors of a nuclear holocaust. Paul Birch plays a scientist holed up in a house with his daughter, Lori Nelson. Touch (Mike) Connors, pre-Mannix, and Adele Jergens, post-menopausal, crash the party. Rugged Richard Denning arrives shortly afterwards, carrying the slowly-mutating Paul Dubov, who inexplicably has a Moe Howard haircut. The last to arrive is Raymond Hatton, along with his mule. I am not counting the three-eyed creature as part of the cast, although it is played by Paul Blaisdell, special effects "genius." Jonathan Haze, a member of Corman's stock players, has a quick bit as another mutation.

Nelson pines for her lost love, played by Roger Corman (that's Corman in the photograph we keep seeing). However, she quickly gets interested in Denning. Meanwhile, Connors also wants a piece of the action, much to the dismay of Jergens. Denning and Connors have a few fist fights, and Jergens pretends to strip. Not good. While all this conflict is going on, Dubov continues to mutate and Hatton makes booze.

There are some interesting ideas in this movie. The three-eyed creature seems to be able to communicate with Nelson ... hmmm, might he be someone she knows? Dubov must eat contaminated food to survive. Birch wants the women to get pregnant so they can re-populate the earth. And the purifying rain saves the day.

At the end (which is "The Beginning"), two survive. Guess who. Chet Huntley narrates. David Brinkley was unavailable.


Mike Connors attemps to shoot off his finger. Adele Jergens is not amused.
KJFKlPe.jpg


Raymond Hatton and Lori Nelson are astounded when Hatton's mule starts talking.
5pRFAPb.jpg


Connors tells Nelson that really is a gun in his pocket. Jergens is not amused.
Deuf3y2.jpg


Too many Stooges stunts have taken their toll on Moe.
MLjbAmZ.jpg


Jergens shows off her placekicking skills. Connors is not amused.
TXIao8q.jpg


Hugh Griffith has a cameo.
i8VwrTJ.jpg


Nelson and Denning in a failed screentest for The Quiet Man.
6o0Vzj5.jpg


Joe Mannix shows he has a lot to learn about the private eye business.
YQl4Vve.jpg

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(the restoration of this thread continues)

 

The Phantom Planet (1961)

(originally posted here:  http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/25636-the-phantom-planet-1961/)

 

A near-miss, this opus stars Dean Fredericks, who looks like a guy I went to high school with, Anthony Dexter, who looks like Bronxgirl's cousin Bennett from Yonkers, Dolores Faith, who looks like Elizabeth Taylor, Coleen Gray, who looks great, and silent film legend Francis X. Bushman, who looks dead.

Set in 1980, two astronauts are sent on a mission to discover what happened to a previous spaceship. One of the characters exits quickly, while the other (Fredericks) is forced to land on a giant Chicken McNugget inhabited by teenie weenie people, led by Bushman. The atmosphere shrinks Fredericks down to their size, and he promptly gets in trouble by wrestling one of the inhabitants. Coleen Gray eyes Fredericks like he is a filet mignon, much to the consternation of Dexter. The inevitable duel occurs between Fredericks and Dexter, as they fight over who looks worse without a shirt on. Meanwhile, the mute Dolores Faith also wants Fredericks. (Once you see Fredericks, you may wonder why any of these women want him.) Richard Kiel is dressed up in a monster suit. The asteroid is under attack by his fellow Solarites. Eventually, things work out and Fredericks is restored to normal size, without the help of any pharmaceuticals.

This film had possibilities, but is done in by cheapness. Also, no one acts. Most of the cast seem to be waiting for their cues. Bushman appears to be reading from cue cards. Maybe he needed some organ music to get him in the mood. His character is named Sessom, which is almost "Moses" spelled backwards. He ain't no Chuck Heston, but he does manage to destroy the invading Solarites with his anti-gravity beam. Fredericks is cranky throughout, and threatens to "hang one on" Dexter. See if you can count how many times Fredericks crosses his arms. As a leading man, he is horrible. Gray and Faith are cute, however. The less said about Dexter, the better. The ending is pretty well done, although I am getting really tired of seeing "The Beginning" at the end.

Opening narration by Marvin Miller. Presumably, no one handed him a check for a million bucks.



Paul Lynde somehow becomes a Colonel (don't ask, don't tell).
DY952Cd.jpg



Another tough break for Gary Lockwood.
ffTQYDz.jpg



"OK, so maybe they're not Japanese, but they'd still be great in Mothra."
kp0LEtM.jpg



Dean Fredericks and Anthony Dexter play on a weightless teeter-totter.
1kiTyuz.jpg



Fredericks hears Richard Burton's footsteps.
PnA5DSv.jpg



Richard Kiel does the hula.
AubPMYZ.jpg



Francis X. Bushman shows off his Mr. T. starter kit.
twHHLnm.jpg

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(the restoration of this thread continues)

 

Robot Monster  (1953)

Directed by Phil Tucker

(originally posted here:  http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/25371-robot-monster-1953/)

 

Without a doubt, one of the worst movies ever made. An alien in a gorilla suit and space helmet ("Ro-Man") destroys the population of the earth, but somehow manages to leave eight alive. Idiot. Since we never see two of the survivors, there are basically six left alive, or, as we call them, the cast. George Nader, who somehow survived this brilliant career move, plays opposite Claudia Barrett, whose best role was that of "Miss Mud Turtle" in an Abbott and Costello TV episode. John Mylong plays the Professor; with his Austrian accent, the least he could have done was spout some Nazi diatribe. Here, he does not know his *** from a hole in the ground. There is dinosaur stock footage from One Million B.C., and lots of shots (way too many) of Ro-Man wandering around trying to decide how to kill the survivors. There is also some kind of bubble machine.

The dialogue is stupefying and nonsensical, especially during the exchanges between
Ro-Man and his superior, "Great Guidance":

Ro-Man: "Fact eight. My pulse has been reduced to plus zero zero."
Great Guidance: "Reject. Error."

The film gets considerably worse (if that's possible) when Ro-Man begins to have
Hu-Man feelings and waxes philosophical:

"I cannot, yet I must. How do you calculate that? At what point on the graph do must and cannot meet? Yet I must, but I cannot."

Holy crap.





A rare still of Buster Crabbe's first screen test.
rsd0xHM.jpg



Lawrence Welk sued Ro-Man over use of this bubble machine.
lE1yqOq.jpg



"We switched to high-def for this crap?"
4R2a9Yw.jpg



The film is 66 minutes long. You figure this out.
2zMZzql.jpg



Bigfoot makes a cameo appearance.
ssOlzL7.jpg



Claudia Barrett tries to convince George Nader to go straight. (It didn't work.)
GNhmWvU.jpg



Barrett and Nader team up in a handicap match against Gorilla Monsoon.
LuH27nU.jpg

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(the restoration of this thread continues)

 

Monster from Green Hell (1957)

Directed by Kenneth G. Crane

(originally posted here:  http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/26434-monster-from-green-hell-1958/)

 

This movie entertained me as a kid... but it stinks now. It's hard to imagine that a giant bug movie could be boring ... cheap, perhaps, poorly acted, perhaps, but not boring. Well, this one is boring.

Jim Davis and Robert Griffin are working out of a laboratory that appears to be in Monument Valley. I'm sure the Native Americans were thrilled about this. Anyway, these two clowns send some wasps into space, while we are treated to a typical Albert Glasser headache-inducing opening theme. The rocket crash-lands in Africa, and the wasps are exposed to radiation. Naturally, they grow to about the size of Orson Welles. Vladimir Sokoloff, not playing a Mexican for a change, portrays a scientist who goes off to investigate rumors about giant monsters. Adios, Vladimir. Meanwhile, Davis and Griffin arrive and wander aimlessly through the jungle for about thirty minutes of movie time, twenty of which is footage from Stanley and Livingstone. Boring. In the tight shots, we can see binoculars around the neck of Davis. In the long shots, the binoculars are gone, probably because Davis has changed into Spencer Tracy's stand-in. Their Arab guide is played by Eduardo Ciannelli, who specializes in cooking Ziti Allah Dente. Barbara Turner, who plays Sokoloff's daughter, comes along for the ride. Turner has the personality of a box of hair.

The wasps knock off a couple of natives onscreen, and several offscreen. They also scare animals and kill one snake. On occasion, they sound like Rodney Dangerfield passing gas in Caddyshack. In the exciting climax, Davis & Co. look on as the wasps are incinerated in a volcano. Stupefying. "Nature has a way of correcting its own mistakes," concludes Griffin. Unfortunately, the same does not apply to filmmakers.



Jock Ewing welcomes J.R. into the world.4ebUOtZ.jpg


Jim Davis looks on with skepticism as Robert Griffin tries to sell him a cattle ranch
named "Southfork" in the north of Africa.e3xgemY.jpg


Hey, didn't I see this scene in Stanley and Livingstone ?
zQgZ9GY.jpg


To combat insomnia, Jim Davis counts natives.
9VuloHi.jpg


"Ayatollah you I'ma no good for thisa part."
mkZ6XtA.jpg


Hey, didn't I see this scene in Stanley and Livingstone ?
dH7TyCK.jpg


"You're gonna need a bigger can of Raid."
K5zSuwA.jpg

 

Vladimir Sokoloff, as Charlie Chan, Jungle Doctor, finally calls out Mantan Moreland.zhNUXjf.jpg


Orson Buggy.

sm2ddau.jpg

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(the restoration of this thread continues)

 

Creature with the Atom Brain (1955)

Directed by Edward L. Cahn

(originally posted here:  http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/27065-creature-with-the-atom-brain-1955/)

 

Decent 50s sci-fi, with Richard Denning (neatly coiffed as always) playing a police doctor tracking down who, or what, is bumping off several important people. Michael Granger plays mobster Frank Buchanan. Granger enlists the aid of a German scientist (is there any other kind) Dr. Wilhelm Steigg, played by Gregory Gay. Steigg is a specialist in "amygdale stimulation," and has discovered a method for re-animating corpses by pumping some weird fluid into their veins, transplanting some weird stuff into their brains, and turning the eyeballs into miniature televisions. Naturally, he has done this for the good of mankind, but Buchanan has other ideas ... like using the creatures to knock off his enemies. The film starts to fall apart when Homicide Captain Dave Harris (John Launer) is turned into a creature, yet it takes the cast members quite awhile to notice the scars running around his forehead.

The rest of the cast is rather unusual ..."Killer" Karl Davis, Charles Horvath, and Dick Crockett turn up as creatures. Tris Coffin plays the D.A., and the always useful Pierre Watkin plays the Mayor of the city. However, my favorite character is Radio Broadcaster Dick Cutting. Folks, you just can't make this stuff up.

The film runs around 70 minutes and has some production value. Denning gives it his best shot, despite having to wear a ridiculous flat hat. However, Granger takes the fashion prize, wearing the worst-fitting suit since Frank Gerstle.



"Look Doc, you can mess with the brains and the eyes, but don't touch these."
unJdcjz.jpg



Michael Ross (right) misunderstands when Tris Coffin tells him to "take the wheel."

dbpvdpN.jpg


In this unused scene from Fantastic Voyage, two scientists investigate a patient
with Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
5yYltN8.jpg



John Launer brags in front of the boys.

sk92UNX.jpg



"That's the worst set of hair plugs I've ever seen."

no2Tr0i.jpg


Another Town Hall meeting is disrupted.

u6MejSu.jpg
 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(the restoration of this thread continues)

 

The Crawling Eye (1958)

Directed by Quentin Lawrence

(originally posted here:  http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/26221-the-crawling-eye-1958/page-2)

 

AKA The Trollenberg Terror, this film is not to be confused with The Hypnotic Eye, The Crawling Hand, or The Creeping Terror, all of which stink.

Forrest Tucker investigates strange goings-on in a Swiss town. A cloud has descended around a mountain, and anyone who goes up the mountain tends to end up dead and decapitated. Seems a similar thing happened in the Andes some time back, so Tucker wants answers. Janet Munro and Jennifer Jayne play sisters who have a mind-reading act; Munro's ability turns out to be real, as she can "sense" what is going on in the cloud. This puts her in jeopardy, because the things in the cloud are aware of her ability and want to knock her off.

There are some very eerie scenes in this film, with fog, strange noises, and people under the control of the monsters. Also, several heads get removed offscreen. But once the monsters actually appear, the movie goes into the dumper. The monsters are apparently giant scungilli Cyclops. Along with normal tentacles, they seem to have a long thin one, kind of like linguini, which they like to wrap around the actors necks.

In the climax, the cast is holed up in an observatory atop the mountain. A United Nations jet saves the day, and fries the calamari.

At 84 minutes, the running time is just about right. However, this film could have been greatly improved by not showing the monsters at all. Personally, I would have liked to have seen more of Jennifer Jayne.



Jennifer Jayne and Forrest Tucker read the morning head lyin'.
Bq2aws2.jpg



Laurence Payne watches his arm and career go up in smoke.
yUcnV51.jpg



Forrest Tucker tries his hand at Pac-Man.
xQqHbIu.jpg



This is when you know you're ready for AA.
5Y6PihN.jpg



Janet Munro should have quit while she was a head.
TICRSZL.jpg



Terry Bradshaw tries to get some Pittsburgh Steelers tickets for Tucker.
Szd9TEt.jpg



In the film's creepiest scene, Ludwig Stossel hits on Jennifer Jayne.
7yHvGF5.jpg



Tucker tries his hand (and neck) at interior decorating, with disastrous results.
PGnWjTc.jpg



Don't say you weren't warned.
ZkuplXy.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(the restoration of this thread is complete)

 

Cat-Women of the Moon (1953)

Directed by Arthur Hilton

(originally posted here:  http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/25423-cat-women-of-the-moon-1953/)

 

This film was a pleasant surprise. Sure, it stinks, but it's fun, and not a bad way to spend a little over an hour.

     Five assorted characters are on a rocket heading to the moon. They are led by Sonny Tufts. The word "actor" should never appear in the same sentence as "Sonny Tufts." He is simply horrible, possibly the lousiest I've ever seen. He is also the worst commander in the history of space, incapable of making decisions and being easily led astray. His "Bahston" accent does not help matters. Victor Jory, as "Kip," is the only person in the cast who i) acts, and ii) understands the plot. You know a film is in trouble when Jory is the one you are rooting for. Marie Windsor gets everyone else in trouble since the Cat-Women can control her mind. Rounding out the cast are Douglas Fowley as a guy looking to make a quick buck, William Phillips as a young schnook, and various babes playing Cat-Women. Each Cat-Woman is named after a greek letter; convincing proof that Archimedes was a moon-man.
    The Cat-Women want to take over the Earth. You know, for a change, I wish we would let someone else take over this planet, and let them see how tough it is.

     For a low-budget film, the sets are decent. The moonscapes are interesting to look at, as are the interiors of the city where the Cat-Women live. Oddly enough, the worst part of this film (aside from Tufts) is Elmer Bernstein's score. Watch the scene where the Cat-Women dance. The music sounds like something from the Dave Brubeck Quartet.
     This film was remade (sort of) as Missile to the Moon. In that film, there are rock creatures that look like Gumby.


The crew makes ready to leave the ship, while Marie Windsor prepares for her date with
the Man in the Moon.

vM77sCB.jpg

 

"Do you think these clothes make my *** look fat?"
aUn5dI9.jpg


Um, folks ... you might want to check out that hairy thing with legs in front of you.
qsSxn91.jpg

 

Victor Jory is initiated into Phi Beta Kappa.
2oabrvJ.jpg

William Phipps as the Man Who Loved Cat Dancing.towMVOF.jpg

 

 

Douglas Fowley admires the plant growing out of this Cat-Woman’s head.

YxUJwrQ.jpg


 

Victor Jory gets to make out with Marie Windsor. Yes, this is definitely science fiction.PwdaqS3.jpg
 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sonny Tufts is one of those actors that makes one wonder;  How did this guy get a start in Hollywood?

 

Well due to a football injury he wasn't eligible for service (and unlike Wayne,  Tufts really wasn't),  and he got his first role in the highly successful war film,  So Proudly We Hail.   

 

"Tufts' performance was praised by critics and the role served as a launching pad for Tufts' career. After the release of the film, Tufts received 1700 fan letters a week and was named "The Find of 1943." 

 

Of course after the war was over and actors like Stewart etc.. returned the 'find of 1943' was soon forgotten by studio producers.

 

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

New Members:

Register Here

Learn more about the new message boards:

FAQ

Having problems?

Contact Us