The Wizard of Mars (1964)

wizrad of mars 2

Director: David L Hewitt.
Starring: John Carradine, Roger Gentrey, Vic McGee, Jerry Rannow, Eve Bernhardt. USA. 1h 25m.

A group of amazing explorers venture deep into space on an amazing adventure!! This film does promise a lot of adventure. Four American astronauts are trying to orbit and map Mars, but a strange and MYSTERIOUS force pulls them down through the atmosphere and they explore the surface of the red planet in order to find the source of their capture. After discussing the options the intrepid team leave their ship and embark on a journey of suspense. The find golden roads that lead them to rivers filled with giant leech infested waters, bizarre martians and of course the Wizard, who seems to be the source of all martian consciousness.

Three Earthmen and a girl encounter the horrors of MARS!

This decrepit low budget sci fi movie developed from L Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The Yellow Brick Road becomes Golden and the inhabitants all weird and kooky. Three guys and one girl become a brazen science fiction version of Dorothy and her companions, the only thing missing is Toto and he’s probably missing the rains down in Africa… . The budget alone cannot be blamed for this movie being so poor, the acting is like a highschool musical and the sets look shifty.

Despite the story not being all that original, the concept of rewriting a classic can sometimes be a fruitful process but all aspects of this film are quite bumbling, even down to crediting an actor who has nothing to do with it, maybe the Wizard knows why Lon Chaney is mentioned in the cast. Sadly it’s not one of hidden sci fi gems that offers an interesting look into the future from the past, throughout most of the movie I felt sorry for the cast walking about the desert in shiny silver and gold space suits.

There is just no imagination here, and it feels like a bunch of adults acting out a children’s play, it’s not even so bad it’s good and it’s not something that I’ll return to.

AOFA02

Rating 2/10

RWizard of Oz (1939), Planet of the Vampires (1965)
L – Space Explorations, A-Z of Sci Fi, Astronauts,
5S – John Carradine
Vs – Wizard of Oz Vs Wizard of Mars

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