imagesWILD, WILD PLANET. also released as The Wild, Wild Planet, is a 1965 Italian science fiction/horror movie, the fist of four featuring the characters. Originally intended for television, they ended up being released to theaters. That might have been because of one of the stars. Franco Nero plays Lt. Jake(no last name in this film), a small part in this first movie for an actor on the verge of becoming a gigantic star in the burgeoning spaghetti western genre.

The movie is one of those really bad movies that rise, or fall I suppose, to the level of fun movies. The special effects are bad, the dialogue atrocious at times, the scenery affiche-wild-wild-planet-1965-6really low budget.

Tony Russel plays the space station commander Cmdr Mike Halstead. In all credits, they add an extra L to his name. His character doesn’t seem the sort to be a forward thinking spaceman. He derides a representative of The Corporations(mostly how they refer to the people in charge) for his experiments in transplantation of organs(the first heart transplant was still a few years in the future), stating that “We’re more than hunks of meat. I’m all me and want to stay that way!”

That representative is Mr. Nurmi(Massimo Serato) who humorously states later in the film that “I’m not a mad scientist!” while all the time doing those things that all good movie5839421234_8b24b9ecc4 mad scientists do, down to laughing at the end, swearing to take all he knows with him. There are hints of Nazism in his words as he aims to make the perfect race.

Some of the sites for filming are clean to the point of overkill, others are dirty(probably where they could get free use). Possibly anything with a futuristic look.

The models were obviously fake. The space station looked like a balloon on a string, swaying a bit back and forth as it spun. Flying saucers(literally the classic look for such things) were used for short trips. Their laser guns(they called them that) were nothing but small flame throwers. The space ships had flames coming out of the rear, at times angled slightly away from the direction of flight.

MPW-69342The women were women as thought of at the time. In one instance when they’d killed one of the robot-like men and discovered he had four arms, one woman went into hysterics at the awfulness of the deformed thing while the men stoically observed the same creature. They were all members of the United Space Command and should not be so easily upset.

Our mad scientist has captured the Cmdr’s girl friend, Lt. Connie Gomez(Lisa Gastoni). I say girl friend because one character says early in the film that she belongs to the commander. They don’t act it though and, after she gets drunk and accepts a vacation invite from Mr. Nurmi, she is taken to The Corporations space station because she’s perfection and Nurmi wants to fuse his body with hers to make the perfect human. No, I didn’t get it either.

The Corporations’ space station had things one doesn’t normally see in such things: a huge lake of red water which flooded everything in the big finale. As the Cmdr and his menwar-of-the-planets--2 arrive to rescue Connie, they appear to enter through a big cave.

The bad guys have a device that shrinks people(they never explain why) and then restores them later. The device can make people shrink to nothingness when about to be captured, leaving only their clothes and footwear.

A bad film that one can enjoy. Don’t think I want to “enjoy” this one again though. I started out to watch the second film in the series, WAR OF THE PLANETS, but the Youtube version was in Italian. Don’t know whether there was ever a release in English speaking countries and so may not be dubbed anywhere.

Foe better overlooked movies and related stuff, check in on Todd Mason over at SWEET FREEDOM.

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