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Friday, February 3

This week in the lab we get a visit from the skies...

This week's dose of horror therapy comes via director Ed Wood Jr. with the 1959 Sci-Fi classic "Plan 9 from Outer Space." Alien invaders resurrect the dead to do their bidding - among the corpses brought back are Bela Lugosi, Vampira, and Tor Johnson. 

They're the best part of the film, to be honest, although the Bela scenes make little sense and are shoehorned in just to get a name actor into the film. In fact, it's actually footage of Bela that Wood shot earlier, unrelated to the movie. Bela passed away prior to shooting, so Ed figured he'd find a way to get what footage he had into the movie. It works... sort of. 

The entire film is entertaining in its own weird way, despite the cardboard tombstones, hokey sets, wooden acting and juvenile script. Or perhaps because of it. In hindsight those very attributes are the things that draw people to this film almost 65 years after its release. The amateurish touches make it a charming viewing, and the weird cast is oddly compelling. The film has a sincerity in it that is lacking in films that try to be "so bad they're good." You can't set out to make something like that, it never works. Wood and company set out to make the best film they could, and in the process made an enjoyable, if somewhat silly, picture that's still entertaining audiences to this day. Here's to you, Ed!

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