Tuesday, October 02, 2012

31 Days of Halloween - Day 2 - Movie 2

Another movie that shares some elements with Alien (1979) is Queen of Blood (1966) a staple of my childhood since it appeared on television regularly. The comparisons to Alien are easy to make, but I feel this movie comes a lot closer to sharing similarities with A.E. Van Vogt's "Black Destroyer."

John Saxon and Dennis Hopper star as two of the astronauts sent to Mars to rescue alien ambassadors from a civilization outside our solar system whose ship crashed on its way to earth. Only one survivor is found, an uncanny, mute, green skinned woman with unusual nutritional requirements and a sinister purpose for the residents of earth.

The DVD is a vast improvement over the grainy faded prints that I'm used to, and gives this low budget film a polished look. The film achieves a grander scale because it was constructed around special effects taken from two Russian science fiction films with a design sense that has similar feel to William Cameron Menzies' Invaders from Mars.

The dialogue is pretty clunky, and Basil Rathbone as the lead scientist behind the rescue mission seems out of place, but the movie does have an eerie beauty to it, and some genuinely creepy moments once Florence Marley as the alien survivor is brought aboard the rescue ship. As a bonus, Forrest J Ackerman's self conscious acting is on display as Rathbone's assistant.

I still enjoyed this movie quite a bit.


Karswell said...

Love this movie... I have an original half sheet poster from it too!

John Rozum said...

That half sheet is great. On facebook one of my friends gloated that he has his signed by John Saxon. Me, I got nothing.

ToB said...

Thanks for posting this; I had not heard of this movie - will track it down. The light on her eyes in the poster is a nice simple effect; it makes me miss the good old pre-CGI days.