In an attempt to discover the composition of meteors, three astronauts are sent out into space in three specially designed rockets. Their mission is to capture a meteor and bring it to ... See full summary »
Tonight, first contact will be made! A beautifully-crafted tale of a superior being from Venus who has the power of life and death at his touch. Academy Award-winning actress Patricia ... See full summary »
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Edward L. Cahn
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In an attempt to discover the composition of meteors, three astronauts are sent out into space in three specially designed rockets. Their mission is to capture a meteor and bring it to Earth. Written by
Patrick D. Rockwell <email@example.com>
Actually, when the scientists arrive, they are told that the base is operated by OSI. Also, the jeeps seen at the beginning have OSI stenciled on the hoods. See more »
When Lockwood panics in the rocket and begins to climb out of his seat, the film is run in slow motion to give the illusion of weightlessness. In these scenes, Lockwood's dialogue, even his screams, are all clearly looped in post-production, as his mouth is closed throughout almost all of these scenes even as he's heard speaking. See more »
This low budget science fiction film from the Middle Fifties is illustrative of just how far we've come in space travel. Now folks like United States Senators like Jake Garn and pop stars like Lance Bass vie for the privilege of space travel. It's proved to be quite a money maker for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
But back in 1954 there was no NASA. The Army, Navy, and Air Force all had rival space programs if you can believe that. It took Sputnik for the Eisenhower administration and Congress to create NASA in 1958.
A group of competent B players bring us Riders to the Stars and the object here is just a quick trip up in space to capture a meteor before it burns up in our atmosphere. One thing is certain, they somehow survive the Van Allen radiation belt that surrounds the Earth, a recent discovery that Riders to the Stars was capitalizing on.
Herbert Marshall heads the scientific team who are looking for a few good men and among those gathered are William Lundigan and Richard Carlson. Martha Hyer is around to be decorative as Marshall's girl Friday and to provide a little romance.
The best part of Riders to the Stars was the intensive physical training that is shown for these astronauts to be. Not unlike what was done in NASA for the original Mercury astronauts. You had to be one peak physical specimen to qualify back in the day. Not that you can have health issues now, but a 60 something US Senator Jake Garn has gone in space and pop star Lance Bass aspires to.
Riders to the Stars is educational, but a bit on the dull side. It really peaks in the last 25 minutes or so with the actual flight. Still it's an earnest film and worth a look.
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