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

Thursday, October 23, 2014


WORLD WITHOUT END (1956). Director: Edward Bernds.

Four American astronauts on a trip to observe but not land on Mars, wind up caught in a super-speed time warp and arrive on Earth in 2508 AD. There they find that one-eyed mutates rule over savage humans who roam the countryside, while the dregs of intelligent humanity hide inside a mountain HQ. The men are old and eunuch-like and wear hideous outfits, while the younger women are clad in glamorous gowns that show up sexy legs. Yes, welcome to the future -- or rather 1956! The astronauts also encounter two giant mutated spiders -- unconvincing mock-ups -- in a cavern. World Without End has a few ideas -- it's not as dumb, say, as Queen of Outer Space, also directed by Edward Bernds -- but most of them are recycled. Like Queen, this is also decked out in CinemaScope and Technicolor. The astronauts are played by Hugh Marlowe, Rod Taylor (who would have somewhat similar adventures in The Time Machine a few years later), Nelson Leigh (The Adventures of Sir Galahad), and Christopher Dark, while the attractive ladies are Nancy Gates, Shawn Smith (The Land Unknown), and Lisa Montell. Everett Glass plays aged Timmek, who rules the underground society, and Booth Colman is Mories, who can hardly wait to take over. The credits for most of these actors were largely on television. Not enough is made of the fact that the astronauts will never see their loved ones or time period again, but then this isn't exactly intellectual material. Very influential, for better or worse, on such later movies as Beyond the Time Barrier.

Verdict: Even big spiders can't save this from being rather boring. **.

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