Thursday, July 31, 2008

July's Monster Movie of the Month - Invasion of the Saucer-Men (1957)

Okay, this movie is kind of fun (-ish).

It's played pretty tongue-in-cheek, which is what keeps it fun (-ish) and saves it from going completely down the toilet. A B-movie in the truest sense, it's got no budget, unheard of actors, way-less-than-special effects.... So.

Plot goes like this: Couple of horny teens (Johnny and Joan), decide to go make-out in the woods outside their little town of - ahem - Hicksburg. (They plan to elope afterward, so they can finally get further than second base.)

In the midst of their pre-wedding fondling, Joan spies a couple of wee little spacemen running about. When these wee spacemen try to kill the two teens, it's decided they're malicious and Johnny calls the cops. But the cops (surprise) don't believe Johnny, so the plucky kids will have to fend for themselves.

"Fending" then, becomes comprised of:
running over little green men (LGMs) with their car;
trying to avoid being killed by a drunken bull;
running to and from and to and from the cops;
trying to kill LGMs, which nothing seems to work;
et cetera, et cetera, et cetera....

On the production side of things, the little green men are played by little human men in big scary masks and little black jumpsuits. (Note the forbidding size of the Saucer-Men on the movie's poster above. That's a trifle misleading.) Apparently there were more big scary masks on hand than little black jumpsuits, because sometimes you can see little green men wearing little black leotards and sneakers instead of little black jumpsuits.

Anyway, the movie did clear up a childhood mystery for me.

I've had this memory, ever since I was a little kid, of watching a scene from a black and white movie where a man and woman are driving in a car, and in the back seat is a severed hand (with an eyeball just behind the knuckles) slowly crawling up the seat back toward the girl's neck. Very creepy. So I've watched about every severed hand movie I could find (surprising how many there are) but have never found the movie that matched my memory.

Well then, what do I see in the middle of this movie? Why, one of the LGMs gets his hand torn off (yes, torn), and instead of just lying there - it grows an eye and scurries off to hide in our hero's car!

I know!)

And later, sure enough, it shows the hand crawling up the seat back toward the girl's neck. (With creepy music and everything.)

Huh. How about that.

Below, a "gigantic" Saucer-Man menaces our heroine, but has to stand on a box to do it. And Saucer-Men relaxing between takes (including one in a leotard and penny loafers).

This is also a movie with some great lame-o dialogue:

JOAN: (as she and Johnny run through the woods with LGMs hot on their trail) "Oh, I wish we'd stuck to the road; these shoes just aren't made for hiking!"

JOAN: (as she and Johnny speed away from the LGMs in Johnny's car) "I expected to be frightened on my wedding night, but nothing like this!"

COLONEL ARMROUGE: "Our job is to prevent a possible nationwide panic by keeping the information from the public."

SERGEANT: (with bullhorn) "Answer me! You in the spaceship! We have you surrounded!"

BETTY: (as she and Chuck are making out in his car) "I've been thinking...."
CHUCK: "I've got a cure for that - have some more beer."

COLONEL ARMROUGE: "Makes you proud, doesn't it Lieutenant?"
LIEUTENANT WILKINS: "What does, Colonel?"
COLONEL ARMROUGE: "Being part of a show like this, protecting our country from alien invaders."

Yep. Pretty good stuff....