Tuesday, August 18, 2009


I haven’t really thought this through yet, but based on recent viewings, I’m thinking that the late 50’s was a bad time for science fiction cinema. The glory days of the trailblazing films of the mid-50’s, like GODZILLA, THEM, CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON, IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE, and the early Ray Harryhausen movies had been largely replaced by the sub-B likes of TEENAGE MONSTER, THE AMAZING TRANSPARENT MAN, and THE COSMIC MAN. This one isn’t so much SF as a cheapie police movie with Dragnet-like narration. After rocketship Space Master X-7 returns from Mars, scientist Paul Frees is examining some of the specimens when his ex-wife (Lyn Thomas) arrives, making trouble over a child custody case. She leaves in a huff, then later hears on the radio that Frees was found dead that night. Our hero, Bill Williams, discovers that a Martian fungus which Frees had named “Bloodrust” killed him and is being carried by Thomas, who, assuming the police are looking for her in connection with Frees’ death, is on the run. That’s it: a Typhoid Mary melodrama dressed up as science-fiction. The most interesting aspect is seeing Paul Frees, famous for his cartoon voices (particularly Boris Badenov on Rocky & Bullwinkle). The potentially scary fungus looks like a wet, pulsating tarp. The domestic drama between Frees and Thomas works up some tension, but goes nowhere. Folks on IMDb who saw this in their childhood found it scary, but now its only value is as a novelty item. [FMC]


Faith Cooper said...

I want to see this old movie. Maybe I'll just a dvd movie of it.

Nice Blog!

dfordoom said...

The most interesting sci-fi from the late 50s/early 60s seems to be the East European stuff. American sci-fi did seem to be running out of ideas. It didn't really start to get interesting again until the 60s.