EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|DARK STAR (director/writer: John Carpenter; screenwriters; Dan O'Bannon/from the story by Dan O'Bannon & John Carpenter; cinematographer: Douglas Knapp; editor: Dan O'Bannon; music: John Carpenter; cast: Brian Narelle (Doolittle), Dan O’Bannon (Pinback), Andreijah Pahich (Talby), Cal Kuniholm (Boiler), Cookie Knapp (Voice of Computer); Runtime: 83; MPAA Rating: G; producer: John Carpenter; United Home Video; 1974)|
lightweight outer-space hippie spoof."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
The debut sci-fi film
of John Carpenter ("Halloween"/"Assault on Precinct 13 "/"The Fog") is a rare cult comedy
about astronauts who
become weary in outer-space. It's a parody of
Kubrick's 2001: A Space
Odyssey. Considering its low-budget ($60,000), its
special effects are
based on the
story by Dan O'Bannon & Carpenter.
The two were students at the University of
Southern California when they made the film.
Carpenter has referred to
the film as his Waiting for Godot in space.
Set in the middle of
century, where the spaceship Dark Star has been for
twenty-years on a mission in outer space to explore
unstable planets, that might threaten the galaxy, with
talking bombs. When Commander Powell accidentally is electrocuted because
seat short circuits, he's stored
half-alive in deep freeze where the crew from time to
time can seek his
advice. The remaining four men crew--the dreamy acting
ex-surfer Lt. Doolittle (Brian Narelle), the restless neurotic
Sgt. Pinback (Dan O’Bannon), the gun happy psychotic
Boiler (Cal Kuniholm), and the
loner star gazer Talby (Andreijah
try to keep
sane by writing diaries as they deteriorate along with
The crew must cope
boredom, personal disagreements, an unruly alien
mascot in the form of
a beach-ball with claws, a faulty talking female
computer system due to
being hit by an asteroid shower and a "smart bomb" that questions the new
order to abort a bombing mission which will destroy them
since it's stuck in
the cargo section. The only way it can be stopped is
if Doolittle can
talk some sense into the bomb and convince it that it
should cancel its
countdown because conditions have changed.
An enjoyable lightweight outer-space hippie spoof.
REVIEWED ON 11/15/2010 GRADE: B
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ