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Not Rated
Copyright 1960 American International Pictures
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Dr. Iris Ryan - Nicknamed "Irish," she is here to scream at all the scary monsters. Her entire face unhinges. I swear the woman is part snake.
  • Colonel Thomas O'Bannion - Mission commander who starts putting the moves on Iris before the ship is even out of orbit.
  • Chief Warrant Officer Sam Jacobs - Gleeful moron with a freeze-ray gun, spends most of his time lavishing affection on it until the amoeba eats him.
  • Professor Theodore Gettell - We are informed he is the spaceship's designer and an expert on such things, then watch him wander around with a pipe. Dies of a heart attack or stroke.
  • General George Treegar - Why in the heck was a military officer in command of this?
  • The Bat-Rat-Spider - Give some disturbed kid a chainsaw, thread, and the named animals. He will make one for you. (You need a lobster too.)
  • The Carnivorous Plant - Tries to eat Iris, they chop her free and move to a safe distance, then Sam freezes it out of spite.
  • The Giant Amoeba - The largest single celled organism ever, this thing must be a hundred yards across. Col O'Bannion rewires the radar to fry it with electricity.
  • The Martians - The galactic equivalent of farmer Joe with his shotgun, don't like no humans trespassing on der property!

Buy It!

The Plot: 

A film, from 1959, which deals with the exploration of Mars is going to be cannon fodder so I'll stick with common sense aspects. Two months after it was presumed lost on Mars, the rocketship MR-1 is discovered in a stationary orbit around Earth, but attempts to raise the crew via radio are useless. Two months? Pathfinder took seven months just to reach Mars, who made this ship, Ferrari? General Treegar and the other experts (No meeting with the President and the brightest minds available?) decide to land the craft under remote control. What followed left me dumbfounded, a launch - in reverse, as they land this enormous rocket with no problem. I'm pretty sure that part cheeses off the Mars Polar Lander fellows to no end. Two survivors are on board, Iris and Colonel O'Bannion, the latter's arm is covered with a strange growth. She is finally able to relate the mission's fateful journey, including having gravity the entire flight! You heard me, the astronauts walk around their spacious craft under normal gravity, which is explained as "constant acceleration." It's almost as if they were actually on the set of some movie studio... ...reality is a gossamer thing I tell you. After landing they spend several minutes looking out viewports and describing the sights to us, then Iris sees a scary face in the window and screams. Everyone suits up and goes outside to explore, boy are strange things waiting for them: carnivorous plants, huge bat-rat-spider-lobster things, a giant amoeba, and the Martians themselves. How they mistook the bat-rat-spider-lobster beast for a patch of trees is still a mystery, but common sense fled me (Early on and under a hail of blows from the film.) anyway.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • The Pentagon has screen doors.
  • A rocket landing looks just like a rocket taking off, except in reverse.
  • Shifting desert sand dunes make excellent landing pads.
  • Earth is orbited by deadly radioactive meteorites. (I do not mean small particles, I mean glowing hunks of rock.)
  • Palm trees grow on Mars.
  • If it looks like a man-eating plant then it probably is a man-eating plant.
  • Having your eyes flash frozen sucks.
  • Nobody likes us. (Us humans that is.)

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 2 mins - Is it called the X-1 or the MR-1?
  • 3 mins - They flew to Nevada in a B-52? (A bomber.) Why not a passenger aircraft?
  • 16 mins - That is a darn roomy spaceship.
  • 27 mins - Why is she cleaning everything, it wasn't clean when they first packed the gear?
  • 32 mins - Stole those spacesuits from the local service station didn't you?
  • 42 mins - I really think that their helmets are open, no faceplates. (I'm right you know.)
  • 66 mins - Maybe you should check out the top of the tree...
  • 77 mins - Even through this crazy red effect I can tell that is a drawing.
  • 84 mins - This is the first point I can confirm one of my suspicions, their control room is where the engines should be...


  • Sam: "If those Martians are out there they must invisible."
  • Sam: "Some baby, that rat-bat-spider nightmare, huh?"

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note angryred1.wav Control: "Stand by to check interior radiation."
Treegar: "Hold it, look!"
Control: "Recovery squads, hold!"
Treegar: "Someone's alive!"
Guy: "The girl!"
Treegar: "To hell with radiation, let's go!"
Green Music Note angryred2.wav O'Bannion: "Mars, the angry red planet."
Iris: "Sounds so foreboding, doesn't it?"
Green Music Note angryred3.wav Sam: "Well, should we go out and claim the planet in the name of Brooklyn?"
Green Music Note angryred4.wav The Martians laying down the law.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipangryred1.mpg - 2.4m
The Bat-Rat-Spider! Even with the effects available when this movie was made he is one of the more memorable creatures to ever come out of Hollywood. My humble opinion of course.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 2 [3] 4 5 ... 9
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #17. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Tuffy
Anyone who doubts that this is both a great and influential film would do well to note that the rat-bat-spider creature is prominently featured on the sleeve of the MISFITS album "Walk Amoung Us." What higher recommendation could any movie have???
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #18. Posted on November 04, 2001, 07:32:38 PM by A LOVER OF SCIENCE FICTION
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #19. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Priss Asagiri
I'm just curious here. If my memory is right I think that Mystery Science Theater 3000 did this movie. Hmmmm....I wonder if so whether the movie has been released on video in MST'ied format? Otherwise I probably won't watch it.
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #20. Posted on January 02, 2002, 03:22:14 PM by Stug
This movie freakin reeked, my life has been diminished as I can never reclaim the 90 minutes or so I wasted on it.
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #21. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by The Heuristcally Brain Damaged One
Simulated gravity by use of "Constant Accelleration" as explained in this film is a false premise. Why? Because when a vehicle, (be it a car, plane, cheesy rocketship, or cheez-whiz fueled baby stroller) is in motion, everything and everyone on board moves at the same speed as said vehicle. Try dropping a ball from the top of the mast of a sailing boat, for instance, and you'll see what I mean (when wind conditions are minimum, of course. Preferably nil) Hell, drop something while you're driving your car and you'll see what I mean. This was known LONG before this movie was made, and the writers of ARP could have gleaned this knowledge with only the most basic research: BY DROPPING SOMETHING WHILST DRIVING THEIR CAR(S), which I'm sure everyone who has driven or ridden in one has done at one time or another. Estimated research costs: 5 seconds (worst case scenario)

Well, what do you expect? This is, after all, a B-movie, which, like many B-movies, are often produced by people with a collective IQ of twelve who don't care if they drink from the toilet or not (and who often expect their audience to have an IQ of ten and don't even notice if said toilet has even been flushed or not until it's too late. Eeeewww!) Which of course, makes B-movies so much fun to watch.

And, like everyone else, I too was enthralled by the Bat-rat-spider-crab. Now in need of a seeing eye dog; said dog would not be in danger of being eaten, since having one's eyes turned into novelty ice cubes by freeze-ray wielding astronauts without faceplates tends to turn one vegetarian (or gay, I can't remember which)

"We just lost Sam to the ameoba. Is Lawrence Welk on yet?" Yes, some humanity amonst our... AHEM ...heroes would have helped this film alot. So would some scenes in the Martain city.

My scathing review has ended. We now return you to your regularly scheduled cheese.
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #22. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by mark
Its on sci fi channel as I type. It is the epitome of late fifties sci fi flix. Its silly, but it dosn't trip over its self, it keep going reguardless of how ridiculous everything is. I always ask myself 'why, was hollywood  pumping out movies in the fifties that insulted humanities babarism, when the U.S was constantly making war on everyone in the fifties?' Historians will see much irony there.
Yes, this movie is the classic sci fi movie. Not as interesting as forbidon planet, but it WAS scary when I was a kid and first saw this flick on creature double feature in the early eighties, oh how far I've come psychologicly.
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #23. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by shaker
I dimly remember that when the Giant Amoeba was hauling a$$, that it looked like a Fisher-Price toy, with it's eyball rolling around as if connected to a crank-and-wheel underneath "fronds" in near contact the the "ground". You know, I'll buy it just to see that again...
The Angry Red Planet
Reply #24. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Matt McIrvin wrote:

'Simulated gravity by use of "Constant Accelleration" as explained in this film is a false premise. Why? Because when a vehicle, (be it a car, plane, cheesy rocketship, or cheez-whiz fueled baby stroller) is in motion, everything and everyone on board moves at the same speed as said vehicle.'

No, you're thinking of constant *velocity*, not constant *acceleration*.  Constant acceleration would mean that the velocity is changing all the time.  When you stomp on the gas (or the brakes) and the speed of your car changes, you feel it.

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