Galaxy of Terror – Review
A ship and crew is commanded to investigate a downed ship on a desolate planet called Morganthus set somewhere on the edge of the universe. Upon their arrival, the crew find a pyramid structure that contains a labyrnth of nightmares brought on by their own personal fears, pawns in a game played by a being called the Master.
Written and directed by Bruce D Clark, Galaxy of Terror is not an aweful movie. A lot of these directors are one hit (or miss if you prefer) wonders, although the film is actually better than I remembered it to be. Yes there’s cheezy effects, some mediocre at best acting, and some questionable storytelling, but its a fun ride for genre fans. I mean c’mon, how many films do you get to see Sid Haig karate chop his own arm off, only to have it later spew maggots that grow into a twelve foot giant worm that performs the very first on-screen tentacle rape scene ever… classic! Yeah, Sid Haig (Captain Spaulding) is in this one, joined by Erin Moran (Joanie from Happy Days), Robert Englund (Freddy Kreuger), and the late Ray Walston (Mr Hand from Fast Times at Ridgemont High). Some talent can be found in the performances, but nothing that really stands out.
There’s a surprisingly good amount of gore for a film of this age, and some of the shots are actually quite good. Erin Moran’s death scene is handled quite well as tentacles pretty much tear her apart…. ooops SPOILER…. you probably weren’t gonna watch it anyways. The set designs and models were also fairly good. Where it stumbled was the creature effects. The giant worm wasn’t bad, but the other creatures were shot in quick darkened blinks, and didn’t really appear to have any animation to them. Still, where it lacked in creatures, it gained in gore, which is done better than a lot of film from this period. I remember really liking this as a 15 year old kid… and even with the shortcomings, I still quite enjoyed it.
Galaxy of Terror is definately an 80s gem, and brings back those familiar feelings of years gone by, waiting for it to air on First Choice or Super Channel (remember those… back before you had a VCR). For it’s time the film featured some truly intense scenes of gore and violence. Any fans of classic sci fi or horror should have this one in their collection. Galaxy of Terror is being released on Blu Ray July 20th, 2010!
Fun fact: Production design was worked on by none other than James (Avatar) Cameron who also served as a second unit director on the film.