Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.
USA, 1951. Monogram Pictures. Screenplay by Arthur Strawn. Cinematography by Harry Neumann. Produced by Walter Mirisch. Music by Marlin Skiles. Production Design by Ted Haworth. Film Editing by Richard V. Heermance.
A group of scientists and one reporter are bustled into a spaceship and sent to the red planet, eventually landing and discovering a race of beings who look and talk exactly like humans! Naturally their costumes are a lot more fabulous, but the Martians turn out to be sympathetic and hospitable, which we all know means they’re secretly up to no good. It turns out that a vital resource of Mars, Corium, is running low, and these guys need to steal the Earthlings’ spaceship in order to invade our planet and replenish their stores. Unsubtle allegory regarding post-war nuclear themes (talking and sympathy lead to mutual benefit instead of always trying to win the upper hand) is appreciated here, but the cheesy sexism of the plot (the female scientist wants to know where the kitchen is as soon as she arrives on Mars) and hilarious outfits might not convince you to take it too seriously. Great colour photography, though, even if the years have not been kind to this forgotten charmer and it is not being kept in superb condition.