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Fire Maidens of Outer Space (1956) - Blu-ray Review

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Fire Maidens of Outer SPace

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1 star

Cy Roth’s Fire Maidens of Outer Space from 1956 is 78-minutes of black-and-white science fiction B-movie cheese.  It should be noted that most of that cheese has spoiled.  While this isn’t the worse film ever made, it is a close contender.  Having admitted that the film does indeed suck, one can’t help but have a good time … laughing at its many, many flaws…or cry.

Most of the many 1950′s science fiction B-movies have a redeeming naivety that makes them at the very least a bit watchable; Fire Maidens of Outer Space – because it doesn’t even try to be plausible or funny – is simply not one of them.

Roth’s movie is cheaply made entertainment that – as its centerpiece – has a bunch of scantily clad women writhing their bodies in front of a cardboard background over and over again all for the enjoyment of the five chain-smoking American and British astronauts who have discovered there is oxygen and semi-intelligent life on the 13th moon of Jupiter.  And all they want to do is dance, dance, dance.

The life we are speaking of is, of course, the atlanteans who – long ago and once upon a time – took a rocket to space and landed on Jupiter’s 13th moon.  They built a fortress when they weren’t dancing for their own enjoyment or running away from the dime-store costumed beast in the shadows.

Say what?

Listen, the astronauts – to prove they aren’t just sexist pigs leering at women - have to save the girls from something so writer/director Roth has a kids Halloween masked black creature – with visible zippers in the front of his furry costume – stalking the ladies in the shadows of the moon set.  The monster knows the secret behind their constant dancing.  And he lusts for more.  How could he not?!  The English-speaking women, running around in mini-skirts and little else look so very pretty speaking their lines and doing what they’re supposed to for Roth.

There are no characters in this movie.  The cast – led by Anthony Dexter and Susan Shaw – simply quote lines and move around, directionless, on the set.  There’s a bunch of mumbo jumbo nonsense and overuse of stock footage – including a superimposed V-2 rocket zooming across space – to try to make it look authentic but … no…absolutely no one is biting.  The cartoon meteor storm should have been our warning that this journey to Jupiter was not going to go well.

Fire Maidens of Outer Space was one of Mystery Science Theater 3000’s best episodes.  As a feature film, it’s as hollow as the imaginary gas grenades the Queen of Atlantis uses to roast the beast alive with and as ludicrous as the telephone NASA uses to contact their astronauts in space with.

Mission … accomplished?

{2jtab: Film Details}

Fire Maidens of Outer SPaceMPAA Rating: This title has not been rated by the MPAA.
Runtime:
73 mins.
Director
: Cy Roth
Writer
: Cy Roth
Cast:
Anthony Dexter, Susan Shaw, Paul Carpenter
Genre: Sci-fi
Tagline:
ROCKET-MEN'S SENSATIONAL DISCOVERY IN OUTER SPACE! World of Women seeking male partners to carry on race!
Memorable Movie Quote: "By the law of Atlantic, I am yours."
Distributor:
Saturn Films
Home Video Distributor:
Olive Films
Official Site:
Release Date:
September 6, 1956
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
July 20, 2013

Synopsis: A team of astronauts lands on a moon of Jupiter to find it populated with beautiful young women looking for mates. An old man explains to the explorers the group's story, as well as the moon's dangers.

{2jtab: Blu-ray Review}

Fire Maidens of Outer SPace

Component Grades
Movie

Blu-ray Disc
1 star

2 stars



Blu-ray Experience
1.5 Stars

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Available on Blu-ray - July 30, 2013
Screen Formats: 1.75:1
Subtitles
: None
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio Mono
Discs: 25GB Blu-ray Disc; Single disc (1 BD)
Region Encoding: A

Presented on Blu-ray courtesy of Olive Films with an AVC encoded 1080p transfer in 1.66:1, the transfer is just about the only good thing about Cy Roth’s film.  Details are striking and, while there are some noticeable scratches and imperfections from time to time, the overall contrast is good.  Note to anyone expecting stock footage to look as slick as the rest of the movie wrapped around it: Never going to happen.  The film’s soundtrack – presented here in a lossless DTS-HD Master Audio Mono – suffers because the initial recording on the set suffered from poor quality.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • Uh, no.

Special Features:

Olive Films doesn’t do supplemental material for their Paramount titles.  Just be happy – really? – this cheesy nonsense found its way to Blu.

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