Culture

Sgathaich: 20 Million Miles to Earth

sgathaich bannerIt’s time to look at what might be my last black and white Ray Harryhausen film (as mentioned need to check on what I have, and turns out I had reviewed Monolith Monsters). So we take a look at one that once again takes cues from Frankenstein, since the monster, isn’t really something malicious.

The film opens in the Mediterranean (well after some science babble) as we view some fisherman off the coast in Sicily see an alien space ship crash into the ocean, but these aliens aren’t extra terrestrial, they are AMERICANS (DUN DUN DUUUUN).

20 million miles to earth 2

The brave fishermen go through the sinking ship and manage to save 2 men (though one dies later of a space illness that is irrelevant to the plot). Turns out this ship had been on a trip to Venus and after months had just got back only to be hit by a meteorite. Talking to the only important survivor Bob Calder they find that when they got to Venus they all slowly died of not being able to breathe properly….. excuse me for a moment while I rant for the next paragraph.

OK so apparently they were able to send a rocket to Venus for around a whole year, and did such an amazing job no one knew about it, yet they were so idiotic they didn’t wear space suits! AIHSGFOUHSOUHSOUAPDHSOUHAPUGDIYSGDOA *starts yelling into a pillow to muffle the rage*

Ok so stupidest science fiction plot I’d heard so far aside, the child of the brave fisherman finds a capsule and being a stupid child decides to open it finding a weird gooey slug like mass with something inside. In an act that is semi stupid rather than putting two and two together and thinking it’s probably from the space ship, he instead sells it to a zoologist because he wants to go to Texas (see semi stupid, he knows who to give it to when not doing the right thing). Well we learn from Bob (can’t unhear Blackadder) that they took a live specimen from the life on Venus to study and try and work out how to survive. So yeah they kidnapped an innocent child and flung it through space, OUR PROTAGONIST EVERYONE!

Well the creature hatches into the Yimr another master piece of Ray Harryhausen effects. He correctly shows this isn’t some malevolent being but a creature lost in a unfamiliar world only lashing out when threatened or attacked. Have to give it credit for him seeing between the lines and seeing this creature was innocent and our heroes are kind of all dicks. The small child hid things from the government for his own gain and the protagonist kidnapped an innocent creature to experiment on.

20 million miles to earthWell after the creature got loose, mauled a farmer then got caught in an electric net, it continued to grow to a large size, this was explained as a reaction to Earth’s atmosphere causing its cells to keep multiplying. But though it was kept in constant status because everyone in this film who isn’t a minor character is a dick or a moron, they end up short circuiting their own machines and the Yimr gets loose in Rome, fights an elephant then gets killed in the Colosseum.

I’d like to say there’s more to the film but that’s it, it’s really bare bones and the more you look into it the more you find everyone is a dick (except those fishermen at the start). If you’re coming to see this, it’s for the Yimr and the Yimr alone the poor innocent creature, stolen to a world not its own and lashing out at those that threaten it, fortunately it was made by Harryhausen so whenever it’s on it’s a treat but those scenes without it… urgh I hate plot required stupidity.

Rating: spear  spear spear

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