Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


THE PHANTOM PLANET (1961). Director: William Marshall.

Captain Frank Chapman (Dean Fredericks) winds up on a asteroid that can maneuver through space and upon which the inhabitants are only a few inches high. Chapman shrinks inside his space suit, encounters the space Lilliputians, and winds up embroiled in their conflicts and problems. The women on the asteroid include Colleen Gray as Liara and Delores Faith as Zetha, while the male aliens include Anthony Dexter (Fire Maidens of Outer Space; ValentinoThree Blondes in His Life), former silent star Francis X. Bushman (The Three Musketeers; 12 to the Moon, also with Dexter) and even Richard Kiel (Jaws of the Bond movies) as a silly-looking "Solarite" monster. One good scene shows a lieutenant floating off into space after an accident, and some of the other FX in the film aren't bad. Some interesting ideas in this if nothing else. Gray starred as The Leech Woman a year earlier.

Verdict: Save it for a lazy afternoon. **1/2.

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