I enjoy creaky old low budget sci-fi movies but don't recall having ever seen this one. You only have to scan the reviews then read between the lines to get a good impression of what to expect from "The Terrornauts" (1967)... Now none of us are kidding ourselves that this is actually a great movie - most of those who buy it won't be expecting the like.
I expected a silly story - I got one. I expected it to be played out in a cheesy, tongue in-cheek manner - it was. The special effects were sub-Clangers - lovely. The alien mothership looks like a pressure cooker - brilliant! I've no idea what the actual novel the movie was based on was like, but it didn't enjoy a successful transition to the silver screen - understandable maybe with such a meagre budget. With little going for it, the movie needs a certain something to give it a lift, and the decision to include accomplished character actors Patricia Hayes & Charles Hawtrey was a wise one, and went some way to brightening up proceedings, while attractive Zena Marshall also provides a welcome distraction. The performances are OK though mostly on autopilot. For the most part the movie is a pretty lacklustre and uninteresting viewing experience - not the worst example of the genre but I must admit to struggling to finish watching it (and that was the 59-minute shortened version). I tried to develop an affection for it but failed. Not a movie to linger in the memory, and not one I will be returning to in the near future.
*PROS: *Good picture quality (on shortened version). *Clear, consistent sound quality. *It's an Amicus production! *Directed by Montgomery Tully. *Produced by Max J. Rosenberg and Milton Subotsky. *Light relief courtesy of Patricia Hayes and Charles Hawtrey. *Zena Marshall looks tasty. *Skid row budget special effects. *It's corny entertainment. *A masterpiece compared to "The Wild Women of Wongo". *You don't have to watch it again.
*CONS: *No subtitles (of course.....) *It didn't win an Oscar for special effects. *It's not a patch on my beloved "Clangers". *Too long. *Too scary for me.....
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