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March 29, 2009


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What do you have against zee délire de domination? Oh, and what kind of Cinéma does one expect from the guy who directed Lou Ferrigno in a bunch of Hercules movies, and whose ripoff of Alien has the heroine exclaim "There's an egg in my room!" ?

What makes you think I have anything against zee délire de domination?

I am happy to say that I have never seen anything else directed by Signor Cozzi. It frightens me that you can rattle off a list.

OMG! I've actually seen one of the Ferrigno Hercules movies. Now I need to see this...thing.

Susan... It frightens me that you can rattle off a list.

It frightens me too.

the fact that it is left-handed is a critical bit of symbolism

I'd tell you what it is, but then you'd have to kill me.

I'm just speechless with awe.

...the exciting planet of the miniskirted Amazons...

Doesn't narrow it down enough. I have 1,723 listed for this sector alone.

I can tell that you've made a detailed survey of the topic. Have H&K offered any opinions on Starcrash?

James Tiberius Kirk probably surveyed each and everyone of those 1723 planets populated by miniskirted Amazons, and only Good Taste prevents me from making a crude joke about that.

What if I just threaten you with the amazing rifle ray, assuming I can figure out which end is the business end and where the trigger is?

Ah! Your rifle ray cannot withstand my book-riffling ray or my piffle-pilfering tray or my wiffle bat! Bwahahahah!!!

Susan, have you ever watched Mesa of Lost Women? It is my favorite BadFilm ever. As one commenter said, wander out of the room or simply look away from the film for a few minutes and come back, and you'll think you're in a completely different movie. It's pretty readily available as part of various cheap horror compilations; I guess the rights don't cost much. Highly recommended.

In the dept of old SF movies that sound cheesy but manage to overcome their limited resources, I'd recommend The Angry Red Planet and, especially, Robinson Crusoe on Mars.

I have several bad films that I like to watch, but I think I'll let this one go!

Marilee... Which bad movies did you have in mind? I'm curious to know if I've already seen them. If I have, this will only reinforce the concerns that Susan expressed upon discovering my familiarity with Luigi Cozzi's oeuvre.

Well, one of my favorites is Santa Claus and the Martians. I watch that every year.

Marilee... I've got that one, or rather the MST3K version. Pia Zadora sure was young when she appeared in that movie, eh? I also have the MST3K version of a Mexican film where Santa dukes it out with one of Lucifer's devils.

Sadly neither I nor my blogging partner have ever seen Star Crash. However the Hoff is a favourite of two other movie night regulars (presumably from Knight Rider and, or course, the eponymous role in Nick Fury: Agent of Shield) and to counter my criticism of him I was given his autobiography for my last birthday. Let's what he has to say about the film:

I was offered a bigger role - and a $10,000 fee - in Star Crash, a cheap Italian rip-off of Star Wars directed by Luigi Cozzi in which I play Prince Simon, son and heir to the Emperor of the Galaxy (Christopher Plummer, light years away from his triumph as Captain von Trapp in The Sound of Music). The heroine, Stella Star (former Bond girl Caroline Munro in a spectacular leather bikini) has to rescue Simon from the clutches of Count Zarth Arn (Joe Spinell), evil leader of the League of Dark Worlds who has a doom machine which projects red monsters into space that drive astronauts mad...
We filmed these scenes at the Cinecita studios, Rome, in spray-painted star buggies on a plastic set surrounded by flashing neon lights and exploding papier-mache planets. [...] We also did location work at Bari in southern Italy, where I was struck down with food poisoning but it didn't stop me working. The director just wanted me to say the alphabet to get my mouth moving so he could dub something else in there. The film was released in 1979 to universal derision (it was so bad it has since become a classic example of the spaghetti space opera).
(It seems that Hasselhoff was looking for a way out of a soap opera at the time; as it turned out it was Knight Rider rather than cheap Italian Sci-Fi)

I will attempt a preliminary survey of miniskirted amazon planets over Easter. It's a tough job, but someone has to do it.

The strange thing is that Cozzi IS a fan of written SF. An imperial starship at the beginning is called the Murray Leinster. Hoff's Simon is named after Simon Ashton, who brings a young Eric John Stark back to civilization, in the Leigh Brackett stories. His ripoff of Alien has 2 astronauts go to Mars ans they're called Hubbard and Hamilton, uthor of Star Kings.

It goes to show that being a fan of SF does not mean one is encessarily qualified to make movies in the genre. Having talent helps.

I caught the Murray Leinster, and I mentioned the henchman Elric in my post.

There probably are other references I forgot. Thirty years will do that to a person, especially after wtaching Starcrash. By the way, I seem to remember that the robot chasing Munro was her husband.

I mean, the man playing the robot was Munro's husband. Too bad the robot wasn't her husband. We'd have wandered into Barbarella teritory, thus adding even more to the kitsch factor.

Alas, I have missed Mesa of Lost Women. I don't actually look for bad sci-fi films; they have to turn up in my life for some external reason.

No wonder the lip movements didn't match the dialogue. I think they even dubbed Munro, who is a native English speaker. I'm not clear on whether there was ever a version in Italian or maybe French, or whether the English dub is the version released.

Ah! Your rifle ray cannot withstand my book-riffling ray or my piffle-pilfering tray or my wiffle bat!

I am reminded of the infamous wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey...stuff in the fabulous Doctor Who episode "Blink." (Video clip here if anyone hasn't seen it.)

Ah yes, the wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey stuff... At first, I was dubious about Tennant as the Doctor, but what eventually won me over was his oh-this-looks-NEAT-let's-go-find-out! curiosity that would have killed himm if he didn't have more lives than a cat does. That quality seemed to be lacking in the last season seen on American TV though. I hope the next (shorter? season will have come back to that.

(That being said, my favorite episode of the whole revived series was the Eccleston one where the Doctor takes Rose to the Earth of 5,000,000,000 years into the Future.)

Susan... There was a French version of Le Choc des Etoiles. That's the only one I ever saw (phew!) and the dreadfulness of the whole affair transcended any language it might have been seen in. Having a nixture of dubbing would add to the vileness though,

I`ve seen StarCrash. It`s nod as bad as I expected. The girls kind of save the entire movie.

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