Monday, June 13, 2016

INVASION OF THE STAR CREATURES (1962)


"THE STORY YOU ARE ABOUT TO SEE IS TRUE. ONLY THE FACTS HAVE BEEN COMPLETELY DISTORTED."


Thus opens Invasion of the Star Creatures — and folks, it's all downhill from there. Shot in 1962 on a minuscule budget by director Bruno Ve Sota (The Brain Eaters), it tells the story of two dimwitted soldiers (Bob Ball and Frankie Ray) sent to investigate a crater made by a recent atomic test blast. Quickly separated from the other solders, our heroes are captured by a group of alien invaders inhabiting a local cave in a prelude to conquering Earth. The boys are confused (naturally) by the fact that the alien creatures are two very tall beautiful women dressed as if for a men's magazine photo shoot. The males of the alien race are nowhere in evidence but the grunt work around the cave is handled by some extremely silly looking VegeMonsters that the ladies grow themselves. Between the super-strong, badly costumed VegeMen and the women's deadly prop guns the intrepid GIs have their work cut out for them to save Earth from being overrun by dastardly alien invaders.


A hypothetical fan of this film would claim I'd left out any mention of the story's humor, but that's OK. The filmmakers left it out too. To call Invasion of the Star Creatures a lame, inept comedy is to insult lame, inept comedies. There is so little humor in this film that they would have been better off trying to play the story straight with just a wink and a nod a la Queen of Outer Space. But noooooo! They try again and again to foist off gags that were old when dinosaurs roamed the planet! Along with ancient vaudeville bits and 'funny' mugging for the camera they try to spice things up with the occasional bad celebrity voice impression. I've seen Saturday morning cartoons from my youth that have more sense of comedy than this movie. When the gorgeous aliens showed up I was hoping for a few '60s era politically incorrect double entendres, but only one is offered. And by the time they trot out a group of Native Americans for the sadly misplaced Cowboy and Indian jokes I was simply stunned... This is supposed to be funny? And I'm still trying to figure out if the people in the film were bad actors or just purposely acting badly. Screenwriter Jonathan Haze is best known for playing Seymour in Roger Corman's Little Shop of Horrors and a host of other bit roles. He should never have been allowed behind a typewriter as his strengths were definitely in front of the camera. As one of the Indian characters might have said: Ugh!

Love the poster art, though. 




1 comment:

Nick Rentz said...

I was disappointed by the mgm double feature of this and Invasion of the Bee Girls. This one, like you have written, is lame and Bee Girls is edited.