Written by: Michael Den Boer on May 17th, 2006
Release Date: USA, 1965
Director: Robert Gaffney
Writers: R.H.W. Dillard, George Garrett, John Rodenbeck
Cast: Marilyn Hanold, James Karen, Lou Cutell, Nancy Marshall, David Kerman, Bruce Glover, Robert Reilly
DVD released: May 30th, 2006
Approximate running time: 77 Minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital mono
DVD Release: Dark Sky Films
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $14.95
Invaders from Mars are on their way to Earth to kidnap women to help them repopulate their now fertile world. Around the same NASA has planned to send an astronaut Colonel Frank Sanders who also happens to just be an android in a rocket ship to Mars. The Martians mistake the rocket ship as a missile and shot it down. Meanwhile the Marians continue their invasion by kidnapping women from pool parties and beaches. In the midst of all this chaos Colonel Frank Sanders has somehow survived the destruction of his rocket ship. Now with burns that cover half of his body will he be able to stop the Martians and put an end to their diabolic plan once and for all.
Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster now that is one hell of a title and with a title like that one has to go into this film with lofty expectations. The film starts off innocent enough. They things really go down hull after Colonel Frank Sanders near death rocket ship crash. Colonel Sanders is the Frankenstein part of the film and outside of some horrible burns he doesn’t carry the Frankenstein legacy with any real conviction. The other half of the equation The Space Monster is even more laughable as it looks like a gorilla with a skull mask on.
One thing that is pretty cool is how all the male Martians still respected their queen even though she is no longer fertile. Her evil sidekick is a mister clean looking dude named Doctor Nadir who is not freighting in the least. Too his credit his is creepy. The film is filled with many instances of stock footage from NASA and various other sources and these moments stick out like a sore thumb. There are way to many plot holes to save this sinking ship before the final credits arrive and for those who are not brave enough to make it to the end don’t worry you didn’t miss that much.
Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster is presented in an anamorphic widescreen with an aspect ratio of about 1.85:1 and the image looks proper as none of the framing looks cramped. The quality of the image varies with the stock footage that was inserted looking not as clean and sharp as the footage that was shot specifically for this film. Overall this is without a doubt the best this film has look in many years.
This release comes with only one audio option the films original English language track which is presented in a Dolby Digital mono. There are some minor instances of hiss and outside of these the audio track is pretty clean. The dialog, music and effects are all evenly balanced. Removable English subtitles that are easy to read and follow have been included.
Extras for this release include the films original trailer, a stills gallery and a booklet that comes with liner notes written by the films director Robert Gaffney as well as excerpts from various reviews that were written about the film.
The home video market has really expanded with the advent of DVD and now more then ever we can easily access some of cinema’s greatest disasters via this wonderful media. If you are a fan of schlock monster movies then do yourself a favor and check out Dark Skies Films DVD release for Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster a film that is so notoriously bad it makes the cinema of Ed Wood look inspired.
For more information about Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster and other titles released by Dark Sky Films visit their website.