The first spaceship to Mars, presumed lost, is found in space and brought back to Earth by remote control. Only two from an initial crew of four are still alive, but one is unconscious due to an attached alien growth, while the other is traumatized, blocking out all memory of what happened. In hopes to save the unconscious crewman, the amnesiac is interrogated back into remembering. Those in charge thereby learn of the terrible dangers awaiting anyone venturing into the spooky, ruddy stillness of the very alien Martian ecosystem. Written by
How come there are so many negative reviews about this one? It actually holds up better than many other sci-fi films of that period (wasn't "Teenagers From Outer Space" also made in 1959?), and if it's clunky at times, its clunkiness is part of its innocent charm. The effects and the matte drawings may not be perfect, but they're sure colorful and entertaining, and the movie's restrained approach (at least more restrained that the title indicates) is most welcome. The presence of a woman scientist is also worth noting; although her treatment by the ship's captain is often sexist, ultimately she proves to be quite intelligent and competent. (**1/2)
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