Monday, January 14, 2013

Not of This Earth (1988) Review

Not of This Earth 1988 posterDirector: Jim Wynorski
Stars: Traci Lords
Genre: Science Fiction, B-Movie

The 1988 remake to Roger Corman's 1957 classic Not of This Earth. Starring Traci Lords.

On the planet of Davanna, in the aftermath of a nuclear war, all the planet's people suffer from an incurable blood disease. One of Davanna's citizens is sent to Earth under the guise of Mr. Johnson to test the blood of humans and see if it is useful in helping cure his planet's people. But when some humans find out that he is not of this world they make things a bit hard for Mr. Johnson.

This film was actually the result of a bet that the director, Jim Wynorski, made. The bet was that he could remake Roger Corman's 1957 film of the same name in the same amount of time and with the same (inflation-adjusted) budget. Yes, that is why this movie exists. That's pretty fucking awesome if you ask me. I think it's safe to assume he won that bet. Also Roger Corman serves as the film's producer.

Anyway, if the above paragraph didn't clue you in, this remake has B-movie written all over it and it knows it, shows it, and it doesn't take itself serious in the slightest. Which is a good thing if you ask me because if you were to try and remake Not of This Earth as a serious movie you'd get...well, you'd get the 1995 remake. But thankfully this 1988 remake knows its place.

It's a pretty exact remake; many of the same scenes and dialogue are used straight from the original.

The film stars Traci Lords who replaces Beverly Garland as Nurse Nadine. Lords may be just as beautiful as Garland, but her acting capabilities fall short. This was Traci Lord's first acting role outside of her short (yet disastrous) career in pornography. For those who don't know, Lords lied about her age when she was 15 and got roles in a lot of porn films, illegally. She starred in dozen of pornos and only one of them was filmed legally after she was 18. She caused a lot of trouble in her time. Not of This Earth marks the last time she'd appear nude on camera ever again.

Not of This Earth 1988 Traci Lords nude
Not of This Earth 1988 Traci Lords nude

And, boy, is there plenty of nudity. Plenty of tits and ass in here. Even when there is no actual nudity on screen, Traci Lords always looks sexy whether in lingerie or bikini. Heterosexual males (or homosexual females) will surely be pleased.

As I mentioned before none of the acting is very good. Even the acting in the original was much better. The only recognizable name in here is Traci Lords. But it's a B-movie; I'm sure you weren't expecting good acting anyway.

Not of This Earth 1988 Traci Lords bikini
Not of This Earth 1988 Traci Lords bikini ass

The film is pretty funny. Mostly because it's so self-aware of itself. Like there's an opening credits sequence that has a bunch of awesome monsters fighting and shit blowing up, and it almost looks like you're watching a trailer for a movie. Too bad it's not this movie. All the monsters and explosions and deaths in the opening credits have nothing whatsoever to do with the movie. It's damn genius if you ask me.

The effects (despite a 30 year advantage) are only slightly better than the 1957 version. And I hesitate to even say that much. They're bad; cheesy bad.

Not of This Earth 1988 vacuum salesman

One disappointment I had was that the character of Mr. Johnson is nowhere as cool or awesome as he was in the original. He's even missing his creepy eyes. Overall the film just misses what made the original so good. 

Not of This Earth 1988 Mr. Johnson

It's an enjoyable movie. And all the T&A make it easy to get through. It's a pretty pointless remake, but it's a must see for any Traci Lords fans or anyone looking for some great B-movie camp. For what it is it's a fun time, though you'll probably be better off watching the original

2.5/5 stars

Purchase Not of This Earth on Amazon: DVD
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