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First Spaceship on Venus
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In 1907, a mysterious magnetic spool crashed into the desert wasteland of the great Gobi. Nearly eighty years later, an international crew is assembled on the spaceship ""Kosmokrator"" for a manned mission to Venusthe enigmatic artifact's suspected origin.
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Hopefully one day all of these WW Collection films will be remastered onto Hi-Def Blu-ray for an even more improved picture (and one the actually fills up the whole screen). Until then, even "small" the film is watchable and pretty entertaining if you're an old school sci-fi aficionado like me. For foreign space thrills, I much prefer Voyage To The Prehistoric Planet over First Spaceship On Venus, but 1SOV is still fun. 4 stars.
Fortunately for fans of FSOV, Wade Williams and Image have unearthed a virtually pristine print for this DVD transfer. It's letterboxed at 2.35:1 and the color saturation, color balance, black level, sharpness, and shadow/highlight detail are generally excellent. (There is a little blocking-up in the shadows at times.) Physical damage is limited to some very light speckling/blemishing, that does get a bit heavier around a couple of reel changes, and the occasional damaged frame. After years of watching cropped, faded, dupey TV prints it's a revelation to actually see the whole frame, and especially in such terrific shape. Until someone lays their hands on the original European cut this is probably as good as this film will ever look. (Be sure to avoid the awful full-frame Diamond DVD edition that's paired with Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet; and I haven't seen the Platinum DVD but it's a safe bet it's just as bad if not worse than Diamond's.) The trailer for FSOV is matted to about 1.85:1 and doesn't look nearly as nice as the feature, suffering from mediocre color, scratching, and a soft, dupey look. Five trailers for other Wade Williams/Image releases are also included. A can't-miss buy for admirers of this underappreciated Eastern European gem.