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THE ASTRO-ZOMBIES (1968)

Article 2701 by Dave Sindelar 
Viewing Date: 9-24-2008
Posting Date: 1-4-2009
Directed by Ted V. Mikels
Featuring Wendell Corey, John Carradine, Tom Pace
Country: USA

A bizarre creature is running around loose murdering and mutilating women. The police try to investigate. Meanwhile, a mad scientist tries to explain his work to his mute assistant, who is intent on experiments of his own on a bikini-clad girl tied to a table. Meanwhile, spies led by Tura Satana's breasts (followed closely by Tura Satana) look for the scientist to get his secrets.

Though it has something of a cult reputation, let's face it; this one is wretched. This is not to say there's not a certain appeal to the movie. Tura Satana has a presence that is not soon forgotten, and there's some fun to be had with John Carradine and his assistant. The opening murder made a huge impression on me when the movie popped up on a my local Creature Feature, and the scene where an astro-zombie makes his getaway while holding a flashlight to his forehead is good for some laughs. Unfortunately, the plot is a mess, most of the scenes are talky and dull (the scene where they set a trap for an astro-zombie by having a woman keep busy in a lab is one of the most tedious stretches of non-activity ever committed to celluloid), and the movie mostly just lurches from one scene to the next with no real point. The script was written by director T.V. Mikels along with Wayne Rogers of "M*A*S*H" fame. Amazingly enough, Mikels would eventually pen and direct a sequel which, if the IMDB ratings are any indication, is superior to this.

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