HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
True Don Quixote, The
Babymother
Mitchells vs. the Machines, The
Dora and the Lost City of Gold
Unholy, The
How to Deter a Robber
Antebellum
Offering, The
Enola Holmes
Big Calamity, The
Man Under Table
Freedom Fields
Settlers
Boy Behind the Door, The
Swords of the Space Ark
I Still See You
Most Beautiful Boy in the World, The
Luz: The Flower of Evil
Human Voice, The
Guns Akimbo
Being a Human Person
Giants and Toys
Millionaires Express
Bringing Up Baby
World to Come, The
Air Conditioner
Fear and Loathing in Aspen
Kandisha
Riders of Justice
Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki, The
For Those Who Think Young
Justice League: War
Fuzzy Pink Nightgown, The
Plurality
Scooby-Doo! Moon Monster Madness
Night of the Sharks
Werewolves Within
Honeymoon
King and Four Queens, The
Stray Dolls
   
 
Newest Articles
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
   
 
  Abbott and Costello Go To Mars They've Seen Us On Venus
Year: 1953
Director: Charles Lamont
Stars: Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Mari Blanchard, Robert Paige, Horace McMahon, Martha Hyer, Jack Kruschen, Joe Kirk, Jean Willes, Anita Ekberg, James Flavin, Jackie Loughery, Ruth Hampton, Valerie Jackson, Renate Hoy, Jeanne Thompson, Jeri Miller, Harry Shearer
Genre: Comedy, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Orville (Lou Costello) is demonstrating a toy plane for the kids at the orphanage he works at, but he is also demonstrating that he knows nothing about jet propulsion or how space rockets work. Befuddled, he allows the toy to fly into a policeman, knocking off his hat, so to escape punishment Orville jumps into the back of a delivery van driven by Lester (Bud Abbott), who inadvertantly takes his stowaway to the site of an actual space mission. When he discovers him, Lester marches him to his boss, but Dr Wilson (Robert Paige) decides Orville has seen too much...

And so Orville is put to death - oh, no, not really, this is a silly comedy and nothing truly serious is going to happen to our bumbling heroes, who couldn't even follow the directions in the title of their own movie, as famously they never went anywhere near Mars and ended up on Venus instead. This was one of the duo's final movies, as their appeal was getting to be solely based on their fanbase of kids rather than their parents who had made them such stars in the previous decade. Nevertheless, Universal opted to give them a fairly high budget for what wasn't exactly a prestige production.

You can see that quite a bit of money was spent on special effects, set design and costumes, even if they were rarely convincing but as this was dedicated to getting the laughs how realistic the film was didn't exactly run high on the list of priorities. Actually, there were two reasons for making it, one for a vehicle for the ageing comedians, and two to make good on their promise to the contestants of that year's Miss Universe contest to offer them roles in one of the studio's movies. This being the beginning of the sci-fi boom, the obvious choice was to place them all in a fantasy setting, and Arabian Nights just wouldn't cut it anymore.

But before we reach Venus and those beauties who populate it (this was before the planet was revealed to be labouring under constant, fierce and toxic storms, not that this movie was any more plausible before) we had to visit the New Orleans Mardi Gras. This is where the buffoons end up having accidentally shot the rocket into space with them the sole occupants, but instead of the Mars they think they've wound up on they're actually part of the celebrations that ask the crowds to dress up in masks that naturally make the boys see Martians when they're actually seeing costumes. Obvious gags ensue, along with the inclusion of two more characters.

They are the escaped convicts Harry (Jack Kruschen) and his sidekick Mugsy (Horace McMahon) who in this light look to have been the basis of the relationship between Lex Luthor and Otis from the first two Superman blockbusters of twenty five years later, but that's probably just coincidental. They use paralysing ray guns stolen from the rocket to rob a bank, Lester and Orville get the blame, and have to flee, which leads to the second half of the plot where they reach space and that distant planet, a premise of it being full of lovely ladies blessed with eternal youth that was quite the fantasy in this era - Cat Women of the Moon and Queen of Outer Space used it as well, among others. Cult pin-up Mari Blanchard essays the Queen role here, and it's the basis of mild sexism and daft humour that is at least more palatable than the rather too forceful slapstick that takes up the rest of the film. As kitsch, this isn't too bad, but for anything better there were plenty of other options.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 5504 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 probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: