HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
My Life as a Courgette
Cold-Blooded Beast
Lake Mungo
One-Eyed Jacks
20th Century Women
Monster Trucks
Lookout, The
Black Belt
Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
Their Finest
Stella Cadente
Water Drops on Burning Rocks
Replace
Belladonna of Sadness
Aquarius
Erik the Conqueror
Baghead
Guns at Batasi
Gang Story, A
Magnificent Ambersons, The
Climber, The
It's a Big Country
Raw
Last Man Standing
Transfiguration, The
Alien Nation
Kajaki
Certain Fury
Life
Hundra
   
 
Newest Articles
The Empress, the Mermaid and the Princess Bride: Three 80s Fantasy Movies
Witching Hour: Hammer House of Horror on Blu-ray
Two Sides of Sellers: The Party vs The Optimists
Norse Code: The Vikings vs The Long Ships
Over the Moon - Space: 1999 The Complete Series on Blu-ray Part 2
Alpha Males and Females - Space: 1999 The Complete Series on Blu-ray Part 1
Animated Anxieties: From the Era of the Creepiest Cartoons
Manor On Movies--Clegg (1970)
Plans for Nigel: The Crunch... and Other Stories on DVD
Let's Get Harry: Repo Man and Paris, Texas
   
 
  Morons from Outer Space About As Welcome As A Fart In A Space SuitBuy this film here.
Year: 1985
Director: Mike Hodges
Stars: Mel Smith, Griff Rhys Jones, Jimmy Nail, Joanne Pearce, Paul Bown, Dinsdale Landen, James Sikking, Tristram Jellinek, George Innes, John Joyce, Mark Lewis Jones, André Maranne, Miriam Margolyes, Jimmy Mulville, Derek Deadman, Shane Rimmer
Genre: Comedy, Science Fiction
Rating:  6 (from 3 votes)
Review: Four aliens from the planet Blob are drifting lost in space, close to the planet Earth. While their ostensible leader, Bernard (Mel Smith) goes out to play a zero gravity game of space ball, Desmond (Jimmy Nail) commandeers the podule of their spacecraft and sets off to look for a drink, leaving Bernard stranded. Down on Earth, lowly TV journalist Graham (Griff Rhys Jones) has been left alone in the news studio to answer the phones, and is shocked when a report of a motorway crash comes in - aliens have landed on the M1...

Comedy team Smith and Jones scripted this big screen sci-fi spoof after their success on British television with Not the Nine O'Clock News and Alas Smith and Jones, but the end result was seen as a failure by most people, and got terrible reviews. It does seem strange that they should write a story where their two characters never meet until the last minute of the film, so there was none of the droll banter between them that marked their small screen appearances, even if there is an episodic, sketch show feel to the action that indicates their TV roots.

The main joke, which is clearly spelled out in the title, is that the visiting aliens are not super intelligent and fantastically advanced as in other science fiction movies, but they are basically idiots. Bernard is the brightest of the bunch, but as he is abandoned in the U.S.A. while his comrades are the centre of attention elsewhere, no one knows about him, and he is disbelieved and forgotten about. Meanwhile Desmond, Sandra (Joanne Pearce) and Julian (Paul Bown) are quizzed by scientists and the military, who find to their dismay that there is nothing worth learning about them.

The aliens have an ally in Graham, who has infiltrated the top secret compound where they are held, and helps them escape when the American colonel in charge (James B. Sikking) incites the scientists and soldiers to kill them. The news gets out (the crash had been explained away as an out of control hovercraft) and the aliens are now celebrities. Meanwhile Bernard, protesting that he is from outer space, is held in a mental institution for some One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest parodies.

Not all the jokes work, and the film is too concerned to draw in the Americans (spot the terrible accents), but Morons from Outer Space is by no means a disaster. There are genuinely funny moments, like Bernard's hospital trolley hitting a locked door, or the guard Graham tries to knock out by clonking him over the head - the guard just shouts, "OW!" The tone may be crude, as seen in the sneezing in your space helmet gag, or the whole of Jimmy Nail's amusing performance, but it's not as cynical as you might expect. It's more disappointed - the aliens resemble us, because we are all morons, too.

As the fame goes to the aliens' heads, they become showbiz monsters, staging a rock concert in New York City, and it takes another Close Encounters spoof to bring them back down to earth. Everyone is left feeling foolish, and you feel a bit sorry for Bernard, who alone grasps the scale of the situation, but is largely ignored. Reducing the incredible to the mundane is the line the film takes, and it won't be everyone's cup of tea. I like it though, it's not often you see a British science fiction film, even if efforts like this are probably the reason why. Music by Peter Brewis.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 11011 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Mike Hodges  (1932 - )

British director, from television, with an interesting take on crime movies. His first film was the gritty, gangster cult Get Carter, but the offbeat follow-up Pulp was not as successful. The Terminal Man was a Hollywood science fiction thriller, and Flash Gordon a gloriously over-the-top comic book epic which showed Hodges' good humour to its best effect.

However, the straight comedy Morons from Outer Space was a flop, though it found a few fans, and while IRA drama Prayer for the Dying and the supernatural Black Rainbow weren't successful either, gambling thriller Croupier was an unexpected sleeper hit in America. Tough gangster movie I'll Sleep When I'm Dead followed.

 
Review Comments (1)
Posted by:
Mj Simpson
Date:
28 Nov 2003
  Viewed as what it is - a feature-length NTNON sketch - Morons from Outer Space works very well and personally I find it consistently funny so I'm delighted to see it given a reasonably positive review. it seems to be mostly derided by people who either haven't seen it or want it to be something else - but then that's British films all over.

I know it's a minority opinion but I consider this one of the best big-screen SF comedies. I would rather watch this than Men in Black anyday.

MJ Simpson
(owner of the world's largest collection of MFOS memorabilia)
       


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
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Ian Phillips
Jensen Breck
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
Stately Wayne Manor
Paul Shrimpton
  Vikki Sanderson
   

 

Last Updated: