A Guide to Apocalyptic Cinema

By Charles P. Mitchell | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Robot Monster (1953)

Rating: ** Threat: Alien death ray

Astor. Written by Wyott Ordung; Photographed by Jack Greenhalgh; Special effects by Jack Rabin & David Commons; Edited by Bruce Schoengarth; Music by Elmer Bernstein; Produced by Phil Tucker & Al Zimbalist; Directed by Phil Tucker. B & W, 63 minutes.


ANNOTATED CAST LIST

George Nader (Roy, scientist and astronaut); Claudia Barrett (Alice, his girlfriend); John Mylong (George, professor and Alice's father); Selena Royle (Martha, her mother); Gregory Moffett (Johnny, Alice's younger brother); Pamela Paulson (Carla, Alice's younger sister): George Barrows (Ro-Man, alien Invader; Great Guidance Ro-Man, alien leader); John Brown (voice of RoMan).


SYNOPSIS

Robot Monster is frequently cited, along with Edward D. Wood Jr.'s Plan Nine from Outer Space (1959) as the worst film ever made. While cheap, goofy and amateurish may be accurate terms to describe them, no one can deny that they are also fascinating films, mesmerizing in their camp value and tremendously entertaining. Movies that provide so much pleasure to audiences confirm the adage, “They're so bad they're good!” In fact, these films seem to have a surreal logic at times. In actuality, the worst films ever made are dull, boring, ponderous and impossible to sit through. None of these terms applies to Robot Monster. So the solid two star rating for Robot Monster is earned through its sheer entertainment value, not quality of the production.

The credits of Robot Monster display a background of science fiction comic books. Each actor appears in an iris as his or her name is displayed, but Selena Royle's name is misspelled as “Royale.” Some prints also integrate footage of dinosaurs in a pre-credit sequence that may have been added later to lengthen the film for television broadcast. Children Johnny and Carla are playing a game of spaceman in Bronson Canyon. They come across two archeologists, Roy and George, digging in the cavern. (Perhaps they do not know Bronson is actually a man-made test boring.) Johnny's mother and big sister call for him, having laid out a comfortable blanket in a field of rocks. Johnny asks his mother if they are ever going to have a new father, and if so, will he be a scientist? After eating heartily, everyone falls asleep but Johnny, who sneaks back to the cave so he can explore. At this point, everything changes.

A strange ray from the sky hits the cave, and Johnny stumbles and hits his head. Dinosaurs appear and indulge in a terrific fight. Johnny gets up and sees

-189-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
A Guide to Apocalyptic Cinema
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 315

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?