Personal blog - and temporary home page until new website is finished - of writer, editor and graphic artist Christopher Mills

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Star Crash!

No lie. This is one of my favorite movies of all time. In fact, I defy anyone to not enjoy the hell out of this jaw-dropping Spaghetti space opera, starring the stunning Caroline Munroe, the apparently stoned-out-of-his-gourd Christopher "Captain von Trapp" Plummer, a pre-Knight Rider Hoff, and former child evangelist/Food of The Gods lead, Marjoe Gortner.

Normally dismissed as merely another astoundingly awful Star Wars knock-off, director Luigi Cozzi actually manged to craft an astoundingly awful knock-off of not only Star Wars, but all three Flash Gordon serials, Barbarella, hundreds of pulp space operas and comic books, and a half-dozen Ray Harryhausen movies. It literally has everything: a scantily clad heroine, a comic relief robot, stop-motion monsters, lightsabre duels, space amazons, space troglodytes, a galactic villain with a beer belly, ray guns, awful spaceship miniatures, beach ball planets, Christmas tree light stars... and a score by Academy Award winning composer John Barry!

Still, it's so mind-bendingly insane – like the bit where space troopers board an enemy starship by hiding in torpedos and crashing through their target vessel's plate glass windows before jumping out, rayguns blazing... without space suits! – and Caroline Munroe is just so breath-takingly beautiful, that really, how can I not love it? It's more fun than all three Star Wars prequels combined.

I would kill to have a widescreen, digitally remastered DVD of this, unfortunately the only ones floating around seem to be unlicensed, gray market, full-frame bootlegs sourced from VHS.


El Vox said...

I have to admit as big a SF fan as I am, and I've never seen it. I've run across the VHS tape in store many times, but sort of heard it was cheesy, so discounted the thought. Maybe I'll give it a look now though. I think they pull out all the tricks in the book for the special effects it looks like. Golly makes you wonder why it hasn't been put on DVD yet?

Christopher Mills said...

Chhesy? This flick is cinematic limburger. Still, for pure, unadulterated entertainment, I haven't found a film that beats it. In it's own, pungent way, it's a masterpiece.

There are several DVDs available, but I haven't found one yet that does the movie justice.

Charles Gramlich said...

How is it I've never heard of this? I must have. Must...

shonokin said...

I saw Star Crash at the drive in when it first came out. I recently bought a DVD from "Mac Filmworks" which seems to be from a VHS master. So it's full screen and a bit saturated but not in bad shape.

Supposedly there is a French widescreen DVD but I hear that the film transfer was botched and is too dark and flickery.

Ah well. I'm looking forward to the Moonstone Capt Midnight anthology!