Horrors of the Red Planet (1964)

Genres - Horror, Science Fiction  |   Run Time - 81 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Released theatrically as The Wizard of Mars, this incredibly strange (and cheap) science fiction spin on The Wizard of Oz involves the journey of a stranded rocketship crew (in the far-off future of 1975), which includes an astronaut named Dorothy (Eve Bernhardt). Low on oxygen and desperate to find their missing booster rocket, they stumble upon the ruins of an ancient civilization, through which winds a paved road... constructed of strangely-familiar yellow bricks. The road leads them to the central Martian (Emerald) city, in which they are greeted with a projected message from the Wizard himself (the ubiquitous John Carradine), who tells a melancholy tale of the Martian people's fate, brought upon them by their foolish manipulations of time itself. As his visage fades, he leaves them with a small piece of this time-altering technology, which allows them to return to their ship at a point in time before the accident. Though this may seem like a novel concept in print, this is not the film to carry it off -- writer-producer-director David Hewitt's reach far exceeds his grasp, thanks to the film's abysmally tiny budget of $33,000. Famous Monsters magazine founder Forrest J. Ackerman served as a technical advisor.

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Keywords

accident, alien [not human], astronaut, creature, Mars, space-exploration, wizard