|A touchy-feely alien gets another victim|
GALAXY OF TERROR (aka Mindwarp/1981). Director: Bruce D. Clark. Produced by Roger Corman.
"There's no horror here we don't create ourselves."
A spaceship is sent to a distant planet to see if they can find the survivors of the last expedition. What they find are the remains of the spaceship, some weird creepy-crawly aliens that attach themselves to their body parts, and a giant pyramid-like structure in which they are stalked by half-seen creatures and must confront their own fears. This is an old idea -- astronauts bedeviled by materializations of their own terrors -- but it's also an obvious copy of Alien. The movie has surprisingly good production design, courtesy of James Cameron [later famous as the director of Titanic] and Robert Skotak, and an interesting cast, including Edward Albert, Erin Moran, the ever-brooding Zalman King, Ray Walston as a cook with secrets, Robert Englund [Nightmare on Elm Street], Sid Haig as an astronaut who's murdered by his own severed arm, and Grace Zabriskie as a kind of butch captain, sole survivor of something called the Hesperus disaster [as if any vessel would be named after a famous shipwreck!]. Taffee O'Connell is pursued by a maggot grown to giant size that seems more interested in tearing off her clothing and licking her naked body than it is in eating her. Despite some fairly impressive sequences and decent acting, Galaxy of Terror has a cheapjack look and feel to it, and while not awful, it's not that memorable, either.
Verdict: One of the better Alien imitations, so you can imagine how awful some of the others were. **1/2.