Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Christopher Plummer, Monroe and ...Hasselhoff?

Well, sort of. Yes, “Sound of Music” Christopher Plummer and yes, oh god yes, David “Bay Watch” Hasselhoff. But the Monroe in question is Caroline Monroe, the beautiful and almost famous Italian “actress”. The film is, of course, “Starcrash: The Adventures of Stellar Star” made only months after “Star Wars” and tries ever so hard to cash in every way possible except in quality.

Still, there is something lovable about this film. Just as it is hard to resist the flattery of someone who wants you to like them so much, you give in eventually and find a good point or two to make hanging with them seem worthwhile, this movie manages to reel you in.

Mme Monroe's performance is like nothing else you've ever seen. Even laughing she is totally blank, sucking thoughts right from your mind as they occur. She changes her costume in almost every scene (all of them worthy of “Barbarella”) and even though playing some sort of tough, mercenary pilot (the best in the galaxy) she gives up at at the first sign of trouble. “Ok... you win... this time”. I wish I could put “this” in caps... but she says everything in monotone.

Each shot is filled with coloured lights like some sort of bad acid trip, even space seems over-lit, and that the plastic models take on an over the top, pop art look. There is terrible stop motion animation in some weird attempt to mesh the old “Sinbad” movie series with space opera. The villain flies around in a spaceship shaped liked a giant hand that makes a fist when he is angry... I'm not lying!

EVERYONE wears inappropriate costumes. Plummer looks like a knight from the round table ( and really tries to give his character’s ridiculous lines meaning - making them even more ridiculous), Stellar wear less leather and more plastic as the film goes on and the villain Count Chocula... no that's not it.. whatever... is way too fat for his leather suit with an uncomfortable red “V” at the crotch. He has a cape (no surprise) to fling open at every other word, proving that black is not always flattering.

I searched for this film on DVD for years, my VHS copy had long worn out from multiple viewings and finally got it a couple of weeks ago. I think it sold for about 10$... well worth it!


*Mark* said...

what more do you need in a film?
Such a great kinky mop of curls on the former child preacher turned actor.

speaking of late 70s space schlock

remember Farrah Fawcett and Kirk Douglas' sexy Sci Fi flick "Saturn 3" (1980)?

oh how I loved Richard Benjamin in TV's "QUARK" -- about a space sanitation ship and the zany crew.

Vincent-louis said...

Loved Quark as well... I thought it was a very under rated show. Saturn 3 was a little dull to me, but at the video store where I worked.... it was a huge hit and people would rent it over and over! What do I know though.. I would force the employess to watch "Planet on the Prowl" if they misbehaved.

Chilly said...

Shazam!! Marjoe Gortner! What an actor that guy was. Screaming every line, grinning like Hannibal Lecter with a plate of favah beans & sweetbreads. I love it.

Wish TCM would show films like this one.

Vincent-louis said...

I didn't realize Marjoe Gortner has such a following!

Donna Lethal said...

See Mark's 3-D post - who knew Candy Clark and Marjoe were once Mr and Mrs? We just do a Marjoe post soon!