HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Whoopee Boys, The
Set, The
Cyrano de Bergerac
Death Walks in Laredo
Gemini Man
End of the Century
If Beale Street Could Talk
Raining in the Mountain
Day Shall Come, The
Scandal
Buzzard
Race for Your Life, Charlie Brown
Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon, A
Sons of Denmark
Light of My Life
Umbrellas of Cherbourg, The
Jerky Boys, The
Chambre en Ville, Une
Joker
Relaxer
Mustang, The
Baie des Anges, La
Ready or Not
Seven Days in May
Bliss
Hollywood Shuffle
Uncut Gems
Wilt
Daniel Isn't Real
Presidio, The
Curvature
Puzzle
Farewell, The
Challenge of the Tiger
Ad Astra
Winslow Boy, The
Pain and Glory
Judgment at Nuremberg
Rambo: Last Blood
Sansho the Bailiff
   
 
Newest Articles
Demy-Wave: The Essential Jacques Demy on Blu-ray
The Makings of a Winner: Play It Cool! on Blu-ray
Sony Channel's Before They Were Famous: A Galaxy of Stars
Start Worrying and Hate the Bomb: Fail-Safe on Blu-ray
Completely Different: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 2 on Blu-ray
Bash Street Kid: Cosh Boy on Blu-ray
Seeing is Believing: Being There on Blu-ray
Top Thirty Best (and Ten Worst) Films of the 2010s by Andrew Pragasam
Top of the Tens: The Best Films of the Decade by Graeme Clark
Terrorvision: A Ghost Story for Christmas in the 1970s
Memories Are Made of This: La Jetee and Sans Soleil on Blu-ray
Step Back in Time: The Amazing Mr. Blunden on Blu-ray
Crazy Cats and Kittens: What's New Pussycat on Blu-ray
No Place Like Home Guard: Dad's Army - The Lost Episodes on Blu-ray
A Real-Life Pixie: A Tribute to Michael J. Pollard in Four Roles
We're All In This Together: The Halfway House on Blu-ray
Please Yourselves: Frankie Howerd and The House in Nightmare Park on Blu-ray
Cleesed Off: Clockwise on Blu-ray
Sorry I Missed You: Les Demoiselles de Rochefort on Blu-ray
Silliest of the Silly: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 1 on Blu-ray
Protest Songs: Hair on Blu-ray
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
   
 
  Fantastic Voyage Inside OutingBuy this film here.
Year: 1966
Director: Richard Fleischer
Stars: Stephen Boyd, Raquel Welch, Edmond O'Brien, Arthur Kennedy, Donald Pleasence, Arthur O'Connell, William Redfield, Jean Del Val, Barry Coe, Ken Scott, Shelby Grant, James Brolin, Brendan Fitzgerald
Genre: Science Fiction
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: A scientist named Benes (Jean Del Val) has fled the totalitarian states behind the Iron Curtain to relay some important information that he has not written down to the Americans, but on the way from the airport, after bidding farewell to Agent Grant (Stephen Boyd) who has been guiding him through the process up to now, the car driving him to the laboratory is attacked by enemy spies. Benes hits his head badly and has to be rushed to a very special facility to treat him: he is now unconscious from a blood clot in his brain, and as Grant discovers when he is woken that night and taken to the top secret base, the top brass there have to resort to drastic measures to save the man's life...

This science fiction favourite was written by Jerome Bixby (adapted by David Duncan), and at the time was unique in its central miniaturisation gimmick, for that's the plan of the boffins, to shrink a submarine to such infinitesimal size that it can be injected into the bloodstream of the patient and then its crew will set about clearing the clot, thereby restoring the defector to consciousness. The crew of the Proteus make their way around the body, visiting the heart, the lungs, the ear and, er, the mind (they never travel below the waist, you'll be relieved to know) in a guided tour of the innards as rendered by the best high concept special effects the studio were willing to shell out for.

Stephen Boyd is our hero, although it's difficult to see why they brought him along, his useful suggestions at times of crisis notwithstanding, while glamour is provided by beautiful lady scientist Raquel Welch, who gets attacked by the antibodies (which is oddly appropriate as was frequently observed at the time). Arthur Kennedy meanwhile is the chief surgeon given to religious awe and philosophical musings (he makes observations along the lines of every heartbeat "separates man from eternity"), so that the audience felt our heroes had God on their side as they travelled to "innerspace" (not coincidentally the title of a Joe Dante movie which owed this some debt). Then there's William Redfield piloting, and Donald Pleasence as the nervous, atheistic scientist who is continually trying to get the Proteus to give up the mission.

One of those people is a potential saboteur working for the bad guys, and if you have trouble working out which one it is, which apparently everyone on the sub does, then just ask yourself which one of those characters was not like the other and take it from there. There was a clinical air to Fantastic Voyage that adds a little credibility to the preposterous story, as if applying a veneer of scientific method (actual scientists are thanked at the end credits) will make the audience forget all the moments where they think "I find that hard to believe". The lengthy, mostly silent, scene where the submarine is shrunk is fascinating to watch, the tension only broken by the claustrophobic Pleasence. When they finally get into the body, the old science versus nature conflict rears its head, with the crewmembers battling against natural defences and the perils of their anatomical surroundings.

The effects are decidedly psychedelic, echoing the consciousness expansion beginning to infiltrate the popular culture of the sixties: the bloodstream looks like a lava lamp and the vessels and organs are coloured in muted pastel shades, as if the crew are actually making their way through someone's mind - indeed, there was a sequence where they did just that. Maybe a little more imagination could have made Fantastic Voyage exceptional; once you know its one great idea you can second guess the film for the rest of the running time. For example, during the ear sequence the operating room has to be completely quiet, so what happens? Yeah, someone drops the scissors! That said, you can well understand why the film continues to capture the attention of science fiction fans, if only to demolish it scene by scene, especially the ending which falls apart the second you apply the logic of both the real world and the fictional one. Music by Leonard Rosenman. Watch for: James Brolin as a technician, and the great title sequence.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 7473 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Richard Fleischer  (1916 - 2006)

American director whose Hollywood career spanned five decades. The son of famed animator Max Fleischer, he started directing in the forties, and went on to deliver some stylish B-movies such as Armored Car Robbery and Narrow Margin. His big break arrived with Disney's hit live action epic, 20,000 Leagues under the Sea, and which he followed up with such films as The Vikings, Compulsion, Fantastic Voyage, The Boston Strangler, true crime story 10 Rillington Place, See No Evil, cult favourite Soylent Green, Mister Majestyk, Amityville 3-D and sequel Conan the Destroyer. He became unfairly well known for his critical flops, too, thanks to Doctor Dolittle, Che!, Mandingo, The Jazz Singer remake, Red Sonja and Million Dollar Mystery, some of which gained campy cult followings, but nevertheless left a solid filmography to be proud of.

 
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 is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Butch Elliot
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
  Rachel Franke
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
Paul Shrimpton
   

 

Last Updated: