in Shocktober

Shocktober: Day 1

Robot Monster (1953)

Here it is in all it’s glory the sci-fi triumph of the silver screen Robot Monster! If you’ve ever read my past Shocktober entries then you may of remember that I reviewed this a year or two ago, but let’s recap anyways. Robot Monster was one of many in the “Atomic Shit” as I like to call it, craze of the 1950s. Ya know movies about giant insects, radiation, alien invaders and whatever. It was a golden age for b-movies and from it we got some of the greatest, some of the worst, and some of the most memorable “so bad they are good” flicks like Robot Monster.

Written and directed by Phil Tucker who was only in his early 20s at the time, Robot Monster was shot on a minuscule budget in an outstandingly quick four day session. Even with the results I think that shows some great initiative and effort. I like to think that at least every film ever made at least deserves a half star just for the fact that it was finished, but enough of that, let’s get down to the shit.

The brilliant premise follows the evil alien “Ro-Man”, who I guess is also a robot, and his one man invasion of Earth. We pick up the story after Ro-Man has apparently killed all but eight people with his death ray. These eight people have somehow become immune to Ro-Man’s death ray and have therefore decided to fight back, even if it takes all the mighty stupidity they have at their disposal.

So that’s fine and dandy but I do have a few queries. First off, why is the supposed “Robot Monster” a guy in a gorilla costume with a space helmet? What is he the lost member of the Banana Splits? He’s supposed to be some fearless, emotionless, destroyer yet he’s a complete joke, not to mention how easily distracted he is by women. So you’re telling me this guy destroyed everyone else on Earth? Everyone in this movie is a complete moron yet they are all that’s left?

Adding to the already immense shit foundation this film is built on, the dialogue is juvenile and laughable in the saddest way and the flow of the film is always flat. On the other hand R.M has gained somewhat of a cult following for appearing on Mystery Science Theater 3000, so at least it has that going for it. I hope this didn’t annoy or sadden you too much cause we still got 30 days left.


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