|THE X FROM OUTER SPACE
|Copyright 1967 Shochiku Films
| Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'
- Captain Sano - Dashing, confident, and entirely confused by women, that's our mission commander.
- Lisa - Female biologist who is gunning hard for Sano's attention. Tends to display demure smiles with little provocation.
- Dr. Kato - Supposedly the mission's medical expert even though he succumbs to something very similar to food poisoning early on. Does not die, but it's hard to be an effective character when the part involves sweating and nausea.
- Miyamoto - Here is the cheerful oaf we all knew would be part of the crew. On a more interesting note, three male friends wave good bye upon his departure from the moon base.
- Michiko - Sano's girlfriend, she spends about half the film in a jealous (and foul tempered) stew.
- Dr. Stein - Forced to take Dr. Kato's place and we are constantly reminded that he would rather be home with his wife. Considering his looks I do not imagine his wife being the "lights on" kind.
- Dr. Berman - German scientist who is in charge of something or another important.
- The UFP - Which stands for "Unidentified Flying Pie." This extraterrestrial spacecraft looks just like a snack pie, except very few of those fly around Mars and menace exploring spacecraft.
- Guilala - Space poultry! Though the monster might be only vaguely fowl in shape (it also shares some attributes with a gravy server) I cannot help making the comparison. Which came first, the chicken or the weird green spore?
|We start with the planning session of the FAFC's (don't ask me what it stands for, I've watched the film multiple times and haven't a clue) when a couple of startling facts surface. The one which really slaps me in the face is that this is not the first mission to Mars and all previous attempts met with failure when a mysterious UFP appeared. So, the briefing is pretty much, "Everyone else we sent has died and we do not know why, but third time is a charm right?" Sounds fantastic guys, where is the door? Think I left the iron on... ...at home... ...in Canada.
Things fall into place and the rocket does launch, revealing itself to be shaped like something usually covered with slogans for beer and speeding across lakes. All those aerodynamics are of little use when a meteor storm crosses their path and one stray piece of rock punches a hole in the side.
Miyamoto comes to the rescue as he heroically seals the hole with his backside. Imagine something like the little Dutch boy and his leaky dike, except slightly embarrassing. He does not have a girlfriend, which is fortunate since explaining a dinner plate sized hickey on your ass might be dicey at best.
Eventually the astronauts do approach Mars and encounter the UFP. After menacing the tourists, as all unsaturated fats are liable to do, it sprays their ship with glowing spores then departs. The overworked cast keeps one such spore for examination on Earth and heads home.
Back in the lab things soon go wrong as the outer covering splits and something escapes. By something I mean Guilala of course, the strange creature (it's shaped sort of like Oprah Winfrey during a bad month) feeds on any sort of energy it encounters during a march across the countryside.
Of course the military attempts to stop the creature, of course we see fighter planes strafing with rockets during this melee, and (of course) they are ineffective until a goofy super-weapon is developed later on. On at least three separate occasions one of the jet jockeys has his craft low enough for Guilala to make physical contact with it, including one fool who runs smack dab into Guilala's forehead! You absolutely have to be kidding me, presumably the pilot had a driver's license as well, no wonder the roads are not safe. About that super weapon I mentioned: it does the trick in stopping the monster while suspiciously reminding me of shaving cream.
The poor vision afforded to the wearer of this particular rubber suit is painfully apparent in a couple of scenes. Notice how Guilala's head is tilted back while stumbling across the set. I imagine the actor was desperately peering around in an attempt to figure out what was going on. Good luck buddy, I have the benefits of perfect vision plus third person perspective and haven't a clue, but it is still plenty of fun.
A big thanks to Chris Brown, he pointed out that at one point you can see a sign. It plainly says "Fuji Astro-Flying Center." FAFC!
The B-Masters Cabal celebrates Godzilla 2000 being released in U.S. theaters, read more reviews for giant monster films:
|Things I Learned From This Movie:|| |
- Nuclear fuel is transported in old station wagons.
- Cotton candy machines can be filled with glitter and used to detect radiation.
- The United Space Authority had a contract with Lawrence Welk to provide radio entertainment.
- Artificial water is inferior to "real" water. It's those cheap Hydrogen atoms they use...
- If the hull of your rocket is punctured by a meteor then it can be sealed by sitting on the hole.
- Tanks are not equipped with a reverse gear.
- Astronauts wear business attire under their spacesuits.
- Japanese military crisis centers have little boxes full of monster silhouettes to use on the status board.
- 1 min - If there is such a thing as Japanese polka music then this is it.
- 11 mins - Pretty foggy outside, is this outer space or Maine?
- 22 mins - Airtight gloves that you can just pull off! Hehehe!
- 26 mins - Two women, in the shower, on the moon... ...okay, if they would only start jumping. I promise to be good for the next five years if they just start jumping - please. Please? PLEASE?
- 31 mins - Of all the idiotic decompression scenes. Stuff is blowing in the hole for crying out loud!
- 47 mins - Satan's prize rooster is loose!
- 56 mins - Deja' Vu.
- 63 mins - RANDOM ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST A MOUNTAIN!
- 70 mins - The UFP was flying circles around their ship, how did they escape?
- 78 mins - Obviously Steven Spielberg watched this movie at some point before making "Jurassic Park."
| ||Audio clips in wav format||SOUNDS||Starving actors speak out|| |
||Miyamoto: "Nothing beats a good hot bath! How did they know where to drill for water on the moon captain?" |
Sano: "This isn't water, it's man made."
Miyamoto: "What's the difference?"
Sano: "Quite a bit."
||Official: "Doctor, whatever made those tracks is clearly bound for Tokyo." |
Official 2: "Tokyo has to be saved!"
||Scientist: "AAB-Gamma, the monster Guilala is still loose. Your cargo is our last hope. Get that Guilalanium back to us at all costs!" |
||Scientist: "Guilala wants that nuclear fuel." |
Miyamoto: "It will be the most powerful meal he's had yet."
|Theme Song|| Listen to a clip from the soundtrack. |
| ||Click for a larger image||IMAGES||Scenes from the movie|| |
| ||Watch a scene||VIDEO||MPEG video files|| |
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