The Girl from Rio

Anyway, this leads to a lot of scenes of people walking down hallways and through vaguely futurist architecture, all while women in skimpy black uniforms of leather and… umm… is that cardboard?… stand at attention.

Fantomas

If I rack my brain, I can come up with an English language corollary by which to describe Fantomas. But that doesn’t change my perception that there is something irreducibly French about the character. Certainly, Sax Rohmer’s Fu Manchu is similar, in that he is one of those rare examples of a villain serving as…

Ikarie XB-1

That Ikarie was a high profile undertaking for the studio is clearly evidenced by the obvious expense that went into the film’s large cast, it’s for-the-time above average special effects and, above all, Jan Zazvorka’s production design.

Mission Stardust

Two-fisted astronauts, a swankadelic soundtrack, good looking women, pop art design, and a climactic sequence involving sexy nurses with machine guns fighting robots who shoot lasers out of their eyes.

Wild Wild Planet

Margheriti has to be credited for creating that rarest of rarities: a piece of pulp entertainment that delivers exactly what its title advertises.

Moon Zero Two

Although Hammer was best known for horror films, their entry into horror actually came by way of science fiction. Up until the 1950s, Hammer was pretty much your average low-to-medium budget production house, cranking out a lot of comedies, adventure, and war films. In 1955, however, the studio released a film featuring a popular sci-fi…

Santo and Blue Demon vs. The Monsters

I love Santo y Blue Demon contra los Monstruos. And, judging by the way it struggles so mightily to give me so many of those things that make me the happiest — like cheesy monsters, masked wrestlers, low budget gore, and lots of incoherent but frenetic fight scenes — I have to conclude that it loves me, too.

Iron Claw the Pirate

For myself, I would like to believe that watching Iron Claw the Pirate enriched my life in some imperceptible–if perhaps stupid–way, even though it really just represents another ninety minutes of my life spent watching grown men in masks punching and shooting one another.

Temptress of a Thousand Faces

Thanks to the release over the past decade of a large portion of the Shaw Brothers catalog on DVD, it should no longer be a secret to anyone who cares that the venerable Hong Kong studio was responsible for far more than the martial arts movies that got imported to the U.S. or horror movies…

300 Spartans

The film strives for historical accuracy almost to a fault. If you don’t have a passion for history and for Greek (or Persian) history in general, then this film could seem a little draggy in spots, I suppose. It adheres tot he historic accounts almost tot he point of becoming a docudrama. Boredom never occurred to me, though, and I found the whole thing a thoroughly rousing adventure.

Scorpions & Miniskirts

If you can roll with the first five minutes of Scorpions and Miniskirts, a movie that shows utter contempt for bothering to explain anything at all or connecting one series of actions to the next, then you are probably going to be able to walk away from the viewing experience with a mild sense of…

Masque of the Red Death

Francesca he intends to press against her will into decadent royal society, which in classic style involves lots of cavorting, eating of turkey legs, mild orgies, and devil worship