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Not Rated
Copyright 1960 American International Pictures
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Dr. Iris Ryan - Nicknamed "Irish," she is here to scream at all the scary monsters. Her entire face unhinges. I swear the woman is part snake.
  • Colonel Thomas O'Bannion - Mission commander who starts putting the moves on Iris before the ship is even out of orbit.
  • Chief Warrant Officer Sam Jacobs - Gleeful moron with a freeze-ray gun, spends most of his time lavishing affection on it until the amoeba eats him.
  • Professor Theodore Gettell - We are informed he is the spaceship's designer and an expert on such things, then watch him wander around with a pipe. Dies of a heart attack or stroke.
  • General George Treegar - Why in the heck was a military officer in command of this?
  • The Bat-Rat-Spider - Give some disturbed kid a chainsaw, thread, and the named animals. He will make one for you. (You need a lobster too.)
  • The Carnivorous Plant - Tries to eat Iris, they chop her free and move to a safe distance, then Sam freezes it out of spite.
  • The Giant Amoeba - The largest single celled organism ever, this thing must be a hundred yards across. Col O'Bannion rewires the radar to fry it with electricity.
  • The Martians - The galactic equivalent of farmer Joe with his shotgun, don't like no humans trespassing on der property!

Buy It!

The Plot: 

A film, from 1959, which deals with the exploration of Mars is going to be cannon fodder so I'll stick with common sense aspects. Two months after it was presumed lost on Mars, the rocketship MR-1 is discovered in a stationary orbit around Earth, but attempts to raise the crew via radio are useless. Two months? Pathfinder took seven months just to reach Mars, who made this ship, Ferrari? General Treegar and the other experts (No meeting with the President and the brightest minds available?) decide to land the craft under remote control. What followed left me dumbfounded, a launch - in reverse, as they land this enormous rocket with no problem. I'm pretty sure that part cheeses off the Mars Polar Lander fellows to no end. Two survivors are on board, Iris and Colonel O'Bannion, the latter's arm is covered with a strange growth. She is finally able to relate the mission's fateful journey, including having gravity the entire flight! You heard me, the astronauts walk around their spacious craft under normal gravity, which is explained as "constant acceleration." It's almost as if they were actually on the set of some movie studio... ...reality is a gossamer thing I tell you. After landing they spend several minutes looking out viewports and describing the sights to us, then Iris sees a scary face in the window and screams. Everyone suits up and goes outside to explore, boy are strange things waiting for them: carnivorous plants, huge bat-rat-spider-lobster things, a giant amoeba, and the Martians themselves. How they mistook the bat-rat-spider-lobster beast for a patch of trees is still a mystery, but common sense fled me (Early on and under a hail of blows from the film.) anyway.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • The Pentagon has screen doors.
  • A rocket landing looks just like a rocket taking off, except in reverse.
  • Shifting desert sand dunes make excellent landing pads.
  • Earth is orbited by deadly radioactive meteorites. (I do not mean small particles, I mean glowing hunks of rock.)
  • Palm trees grow on Mars.
  • If it looks like a man-eating plant then it probably is a man-eating plant.
  • Having your eyes flash frozen sucks.
  • Nobody likes us. (Us humans that is.)

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 2 mins - Is it called the X-1 or the MR-1?
  • 3 mins - They flew to Nevada in a B-52? (A bomber.) Why not a passenger aircraft?
  • 16 mins - That is a darn roomy spaceship.
  • 27 mins - Why is she cleaning everything, it wasn't clean when they first packed the gear?
  • 32 mins - Stole those spacesuits from the local service station didn't you?
  • 42 mins - I really think that their helmets are open, no faceplates. (I'm right you know.)
  • 66 mins - Maybe you should check out the top of the tree...
  • 77 mins - Even through this crazy red effect I can tell that is a drawing.
  • 84 mins - This is the first point I can confirm one of my suspicions, their control room is where the engines should be...


  • Sam: "If those Martians are out there they must invisible."
  • Sam: "Some baby, that rat-bat-spider nightmare, huh?"

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note angryred1.wav Control: "Stand by to check interior radiation."
Treegar: "Hold it, look!"
Control: "Recovery squads, hold!"
Treegar: "Someone's alive!"
Guy: "The girl!"
Treegar: "To hell with radiation, let's go!"
Green Music Note angryred2.wav O'Bannion: "Mars, the angry red planet."
Iris: "Sounds so foreboding, doesn't it?"
Green Music Note angryred3.wav Sam: "Well, should we go out and claim the planet in the name of Brooklyn?"
Green Music Note angryred4.wav The Martians laying down the law.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipangryred1.mpg - 2.4m
The Bat-Rat-Spider! Even with the effects available when this movie was made he is one of the more memorable creatures to ever come out of Hollywood. My humble opinion of course.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 ... 4 5 [6] 7 8 9
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #41. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by iriegirl
I thought it was very good for the times.  I just saw it yesterday and was kinda impressed.  The red effect was creepy as hell.  As was Batratspidercrab.  But the fish with the eyeball spinning around; now THAT'S comedy!
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #42. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:03 PM by roberto
The angry red planet is really orange. Was orange Kool-Aid or Tang used in the editing process.

Anyway, we should never criticize the limited resources of B films. Mental resources, that is.

I think the director should have thrown in the chicken sink when making the giant bat-rat-crab-spider. Chicken sink? You heard me right. He could have added a wattle, some wings and a beak and made the giant bat-rat-spider-crab-chicken. Pecking up his prey would have been more efficient than that stupid claw.

By the way, is that toot, in the backround, to the giant rat-bat-spider-crab what the pop is to the weasel?
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #43. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by eman
I saw this movie in 1959, at the age of four. For the times it was scary as hell. I still remember the movie and I'm going to buy it, so I can relive the experience. Of course, this movie would not hold up to todays special effects. Nor could anyone reasonably expect that it could. IMHO
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #44. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Bat-Ratty
A superior sci-fi movie for it's time - we can now look back at those more "innocent" times with affection (and hilarity) at what passed for science "fact." Yes to all the comments that the Bat-Rat Spider was one of the cooler monsters ever made. If you go a convention, you can pick up a model of it for a decent price. Does anyone know that Gerald Mohr (the lead actor) was the voice of Mr. Fantastic in the Hanna-Barbera "Fantastic Four" cartoon series of the 60's? - some "get a life" trivia for you!
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #45. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Tojo
I am a 50 something avid fan of the old sci-fi movies, " Angry Red Planet" may seem cheesy to the younger crowd but very little was known about mars or what if any kind of lifeforms would be encountered. This movie and "Robinson Cusoe on Mars" are still my favs on the subject of Mars.
My grandson who is 8 still thinks the Batratspidercrab is one of the coolest monsters he's seen. It's so bad it's Great!
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #46. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Manuel Antares Richard Sanchez
   Poor Jack Kruschen, the planet Mars just doesn't agree with him. He gets blasted to pile of ashes when he tries to make friends ('The War of the Worlds'), rendered a thug and sidetracked to Venus ('Abbott and Costello Go to Mars'), and had for dinner when he finally drops in for a visit('The Angry Red Planet'). "Angry-at-the-Red-Planet" should justly be his mantra. Sheesh!

   The Nora Hayden school of dramatic emphasis: pause before uttering the last word of any important...      ...line! "Sounds so foreboding," doesn't it?

   Not HAL, not IBM, but Burroughs!

   Standard issue interplanetary space wear: penny loafers! (a friend pointed that one out to me)

   "To hell with radiation!" -?!?!- Now that's one fearless person or someone perhaps too desperate for the opposite sex!

   If the martians could prevent our hapless crew from lifting off the surface of Mars, why did they not stop the original trespass that got their antennae so in a twist? Maybe the martians were asleep, I mean, what with all that "millennia" of watching us. 60 winks (remember they have "three bulging eyes") proved just too irresistible I guess.

   And speaking of the martians, is it only a population of one? I don't know, maybe it's someone who prefers when addressing others, the use of the editorial "we", like royalty on Earth.

  "Here's another 'if'": if the spaceship is steadily accelerating at "1G" and the travel time to Mars is 47 or 49 days (I've forgotten which it was), just how fast would the crew be traveling by the end of that period, and how far from Earth would their craft actually be?

   Less Les. I suppose "Irish" disposed of Gettel, flushing him out into space, where his disembodied voice would one day, far in the future, recount for the movie going audience of 1956, the interstellar achievements of the human race ('Forbidden Planet'). How prescient of her.

   In 1959, I was five and a poltroon, watching 'The Angry Red Planet' with cowardly fascination from my vantage place behind a theater seat. I loved every minute. Today, of course, it's different: I'm fifty one.
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #47. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Bob the mutant chicken
I remember reading in one of MELCHIOR'S books that there was surpose to be a giant flying reptile in this movie but it was taken out because of the budget.That would of been cool if they just kept it in.Also the BATRATSPIDERCRAB was surpose to be a ONE EYED SNAKE.Anyway I enjoyed this movie bad effects and all the scene where IRIS gets grabed by the PLANT MONSTER was my favorite scene you can actually see her wrapping herself in it's tentacles that was very hilarious.Everyone should have this movie in thier collection.Glad they stuck with the BATRATSPIDER it wouldn't been a great movie without KING KONG'S big brother.
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #48. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Ghastley Gilbert
The so called Cinemagic invention was to mellow out the rather crappy drawings used at the beginning to show the Martian landscape. Don't get me wrong, I love this flick. It's one of my all-time favs. As a matter of fact I paid through the nose to buy it on DVD then found it at Walmart for 7 bucks.
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