HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Meg, The
Christmas Blood
Equalizer 2, The
1985
Mowgli
Ski School
Ant-Man and the Wasp
Age of Shadows, The
Mission: Impossible - Fallout
Othello
First Reformed
Red White and Zero
Death Wish
Cry Wilderness
Heiresses, The
Millhouse: A White Comedy
Skyscraper
Born of Fire
Teen Titans Go! To the Movies
Lucia
Yanks
Sweet November
Ballad of Buster Scruggs, The
Real Men
Shoplifters
Redeemer
Incredibles 2
Big House, The
Night Eats the World, The
War Bus
   
 
Newest Articles
A Name to Conjure With: David Nixon's Magic Box on DVD
Which 1950s Sci-Fi was Scariest? Invaders from Mars vs The Blob
The Empire Strikes Back: Khartoum vs Carry On Up the Khyber
Stan and Ollie's Final Folly: Atoll K on Blu-ray
The Big Grapple: Escape from New York and Its Influence
The Conquest of Everett: The Kenny Everett Video Show on DVD
Bout for the Count: Hammer's Dracula in the 1970s
Nopes from a Small Island: Mistreatment of American Stars in British Films
You Know, For Kids: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box
If He Were a Carpenter and It Was the 80s: The Fog, Prince of Darkness and They Live
Tee-Hee, It's 80s Sci-Fi Horror: Night of the Comet, The Stuff and Night of the Creeps
Chance of a Ghost: The Uninvited and The Ghost and Mrs. Muir
3 Simian Slashers: Phenomena, Link and Monkey Shines
When is a Jackie Chan Movie Not a Jackie Chan Movie? Armour of God and City Hunter
Anytime Anywhere: The Complete Goodies at the BBC Episode Guide Part 2
   
 
  Saturn 3 I, RobotBuy this film here.
Year: 1980
Director: Stanley Donen
Stars: Farrah Fawcett, Kirk Douglas, Harvey Keitel, Ed Bishop, Douglas Lambert
Genre: Science Fiction
Rating:  3 (from 2 votes)
Review: A huge spaceship orbits the planet Saturn; within, it is planned that a mission to one of its moons should send a new experiment to the two person crew there. The craft is ready for launch, but it's not the right captain who takes his place inside, it's Benson (Harvey Keitel) who has just murdered the captain who was supposed to go to the moon by sending his body out into space. The craft sets out and journeys through Saturn's rings, eventually landing to be met by Major Adam (Kirk Douglas) and his partner Alex (Farrah Fawcett) who run the hydroponics system there. However, the imposter captain has other ideas that go beyond simple food production, ideas which involve the canister he has brought with him...

Have a look at that opening shot of Saturn 3. Does it look familiar? A vast spacehip soaring overhead on course for a massive planet? Well, get those thoughts of Star Wars out of your head right now, no this one is more lilke Alien with a robot. This glossy but underwhelming science fiction was scripted by Martin Amis of all people, and underwent its fair share of production troubles. Chief among those was the firing of its original director and story deviser John Barry, better known as the production designer on, yes, Star Wars and not to be mistaken with the composer; he had differences of opinion with producer Stanley Donen and it was Donen who took the reins when he left. Donen seems a strange choice for this type of thing, and there are no song and dance numbers for him to show off his talents.

Not that some singing and dancing wouldn't have brightened the film up because despite being filmed on expensive, shiny sets and boasting fairly impressive special effects it has pretentions to be taken seriously as adult science fiction. This means a little nudity - not only do we get to see Farrah starkers, but sadly Kirk also - and violence, along with an underdeveloped train of thought about machines taking on the personality of their inventors. What's in the canister? It's a big jar of human brain tissue, all the better for making a robot reason like a human, and the captain builds a very tall and gleaming android to house it.

We know this will end in tears because we've seen the captain is a psychopath, as is obvious by the way he talks in an emotionless drone (Keitel refused to dub his lines so is revoiced by another actor), demands to use Alex's body and greets the station's pet dog by picking it up and looking straight at its arse. He also has a little socket in the back of his neck, so when the robot, now named Hector, proves a slow learner he plugs himself into the machine and lets it share some of his knowledge. Bad idea: Hector may only have clumsily crushed a tumbler before, but now he is lusting after Alex in the same way that the captain does, and is a sore loser at chess. Predictably, Hector is about to gain the upper hand and start running the show the way he wants it to be run.

There's a lot to be ridiculed about Saturn 3. Marvel at the way Douglas is determined to show he's every bit the strutting action hero equivalent of a man half his age - how many times do we have to watch him exercise? Fawcett was just coming to the end of her phase as the next big thing in the movies, a phase sabotaged by some terrible films like this one where her role is pretty much decorative and not exactly a strain on her talents. After Star Wars and Alien were released, studios decided to cash in on making their own sci fi epics, but few really took off, and this effort must be regarded as one of the ones that refused to fly. It just about gets by as a standard thriller in space, but no more than that, and it is an undemanding watch at best. Music by Elmer Bernstein.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4891 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Stately Wayne Manor
George White
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Aseels Almasi
Rashed Ali
   

 

Last Updated: