Director: Not Roger Corman
Starring: Wendy Schaal, Klaus Kreepy Kinski
Review Author: Tony & Adam
Well, shit!! It’s been four months since our last Beer Goggles and that’s a damn crime and a shameful display on our part. In case you don’t know the rules well it’s simple; Pick obscure B movie, get smashed, write drunk, edit sober. Complicated stuff. Luckily we spotted the error of our ways and went straight to the off-licence and scoured Netflix for the dodgiest looking movie we haven’t seen. Low and behold, Creature answered the call and gave us the most Roger Corman movie that Roger Corman was somehow not involved in.
This film unknowingly set the tone for the next 20 years- it’s a rip off a popular film (Alien), that sways into the territory of other popular films, meandering between genres, creating cliches with varying levels of self-awareness. Its budget was $750k in 1985, but after the joy it brought us through the rubber piping, close up shots, zombie space nudity, and laughable one-liners – it’s priceless. Somehow this team found work on Aliens the next year. Creature must have been a lost bet amongst staff or the only B-Movie of the 80’s that Roger Corman didn’t get his hands on.
It’s funny watching this now with what we know about modern film. I tried really hard to put myself in the cultural context of 80’s cinema and forget what I’ve seen. Well, four drinks in and we see the coldest head-shot ever of the rubber abomination that’s the films, titular protagonist. We realised this is the proto-cliche alien horror shot, shrouded in shadows to try to hide all the shortcomings of the costume design. This film was doing the big cliche moments before they became cliches, it was doing them while they were genuine groundbreaking scares, and it nailed them.
But then it got weird. Around five drinks in, a German space molester (GSM) shows up. The GSM is none other than Nosferatu, Klaus Kinski, (and all-round horrible human being). He legit tries to rape a woman, and we don’t think it was even scripted. It’s literally his introduction scene, AND EVERYONE IS OK WITH THIS, IT’S JUST WRITTEN OFF AS HE’S JUST A WEST GERMAN. Yes, this is the 80’s remember, Germany was still divided and somehow the West part was in a space race. I need to talk about the fact that the GSM is hammering into a sandwich during a pivotal scene, again, it seems unscripted.
In true 80’s fashion, there’s a conflict between ship’s captain, Captain Handsome McBangs-his-crew, and the corporate stiff, who can’t keep still in his seat during a crash and just wants to crunch them sweet space numbers. Where it breaks the mold is basically when they team up to take down a massive black shrimp in the final act using a mixture of electricity, racism, sexism, perms, and a bomb. Also, Space Love Interest McNoPersonality (thank’s 80’s screenwriters) vanishes, after just kind of filling in the plot with zero logic.
This film just kind of gives up on its own narrative and plays out the last 40 mins of Alien. And we’re fine with that. The practical effects vary from serviceable to functional (the crash scenes) to downright awesome (exploding heads for the win). This is the 80’s, they made a Delorean fly, but this crew made a crash scene out of nothing other than a chair, shaky camerawork, and suspect head movements- and it’s the purest cinema.
This is available on (Ireland & UK) Netflix, but also in full on YouTube. Get on it for 90 minutes of time travel back to a period where people tried their hardest to just have fun on set, and the copyright rules just didn’t matter. Also, it’s like the only space horror in the 80’s not directed by Roger Corman.