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Prepare yourself for a vintage science fiction adventure film you will never forget, as the sultry Stella Star (Caroline Munro) and her alien sidekick Akton (Marjoe Gortner) team up with robot lawman Elle (Judd Hamilton) on a high adventure to save the universe. It is a cosmic mash-up of daring escapes, wild special effects, beautiful women in sexy space bikinis and nonstop action on a dozen alien worlds. Roger Corman presents the ultimate European space opera, a colorful and dazzling chase through the galaxy that will blast you through the blackness of a hundred million nights!
Kicked into hyperspace by a maelstrom of ingenious low-budget special effects and the talents of Academy Award winning composer John Barry, the film was a smash hit in 1979 when the wild and humorous sci-fi adventure hit theatres. For over 30 years the film has gained a massive cult following, inspiring devoted legions of Crashers fan clubs and more. Now, for the first time on DVD, the film is presented in a deluxe two-disc special edition.
Is there anything Starcrash doesn't have? Robots, hyperspace, troglodytes, Caroline Munro in a space bikini, "reality" star Marjoe Gortner as an alien, a pre-everything David Hasselhoff, and--most incredible of all, under the circumstances--a terrific score by the great John Barry. This jaw-dropping 1979 Star Wars knock-off is something of a cult item, prized in equal measure for its anything-goes visual attack (the universe glitters with Christmas-tree lights) and its ludicrous dialogue and acting. Munro plays Stella Star, a space smuggler traveling the stars with sidekick Gortner (the former child evangelist who had a run of roles after the success of the 1972 documentary Marjoe). There is a plot of sorts, but mostly Munro stands around trying to channel Raquel Welch while director Luigi Cozzi kicks the story from one outlandish set to the next. Hasselhoff shows up halfway through, looking as though he's auditioning to be a dancer at Studio 54--but everybody else in the picture looks that way too, even veteran villain Joe Spinell, as the universe's cape-clad personification of evil. Cozzi tosses in a little Ray Harryhausen-style stop-motion animation, multiple references to other sci-fi classics, and lofty Christopher Plummer as a space Emperor demanding his forces to "Halt the flow of time!" Barry's music (this is the same year he did The Black Hole) is truly enjoyable, and one theme suspiciously resembles a key melody in his subsequent Out of Africa score. The dialogue, meanwhile, sounds as though it's been translated into English from Japanese, and is delivered in styles that range from the incompetent (Munro) to the deranged (Gortner). Clearly, this is a prime candidate for Bad Movie Night, something that becomes clear even before the "Amazons on horseback" come galloping into view. Shout! Factory's two-disc Special Edition has lots of goodies, including a long interview with Cozzi that explains a lot. --Robert Horton
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If you like cheaply made science fiction movies that will get you laughs, this is one for you, but DON'T expect it to match up to anything in the SW universe. This movie is the result of an Italian movie lover of Science Fiction and adventure movies. I often look at it as an Italian homage to our American counterpart of Star Wars.
Here's what you get: A Two disc set (one Blu-ray, one DVD) with reversible cover, a very nice color booklet with Caroline Munro on cover, lots of Special Features.
Disc 1: (Blu-ray)
Movie in Widescreen
Featurettes: Interview with Luigi Cozzi, The Music of John Barry, Photo Galleries
(Designs, Storyboards, Behind The Scenes, Fan Artwork, Promotional Artwork),
Theatrical Trailer with Commentary by Joe Dante
Theatrical Trailer with Commentary by Eli Roth
2 Radio Spots
Audio Setup: 5.1 DTS-HD Surround Sound, 2.0 DTS-HD Stereo, Audio Commentaries with writer and Starcrash expert Stephen Romero
History of Starcrash making of the film and it's importance in 1970s fantastic cinema
Scene By Scene Production Trivia, Anecdotes, and Critical Analysis
Disc 2: (DVD) More Special Features
Interview with Actress Caroline Munro who discusses her career from modeling and beyond (looking very well, I might add),
(If you are a fan of hers, this is a must see.)
17 deleted and Alternate Scenes
Making of the Special Effects (With exclusive never before seen footage)
Behind the Scenes Footage with Commentary
Original Screenplay (Illustrated with storyboard and concept art)
If you are a fan of this movie and late 1970s science fiction "rip off" movies of SW, this one is for you.
A. Play Movie
B. Chapter Selection
C. Special Features
i. Interview with Luigi Cozzi – 41 minutes
ii. The Music of John Barry: Commentary of the Score by Composer Marc of Deadhouse Music – 12 minutes
b. Photo Galleries
i. Play All
v. Promotional Artwork
vi. Fan Artwork
a. Theatrical Trailer – 2 minutes
b. Theatrical Trailer with commentary by Joe Dante – 2 minutes
c. Theatrical Trailer with Commentary by Eli Roth: courtesy of Trailers from Hell – 2 minutes
d. French Theatrical Trailer – 2 minutes
e. TV Spot
f. Radio Spot
E. Audio Setup
17 Deleted and Alternate Scenes – 36 minutes
Interview with Caroline Munroe – 1 hour & 12 minutes
Making of the Special Effects by Armando Valcauda (with exclusive never before seen footage) – 23 minutes
Behind the Scenes Footage with Commentary – 19 minutes
Original Screenplay (illustrated with original storyboard & concept art)
You can find people on The Innanette that call this "the worst movie ever made." Stephen Romano, who does both (!) full-length commentary tracks for this two-disc set, defends this film as "important art," and by the time you hear him out, you'll lean toward his side of the argument. It's a mess, no denying - the script is confused, the performances are jarringly inappropriate, and the look is bargain-basement and yet amazingly dreamlike and even..beautiful. The cheap, cheap stars and 3rd-grade-art-class spaceships somehow actually take you in to the movie, while still generating the yuks. This movie doesn't take itself seriously one bit, yet it's no spoof. See it, laugh your butt off, and marvel at the colors and heart inside this elementary school diorama of a movie. David Hasselhoff is in it. With lots of makeup. I probably just sold 20 copies of the disc right there.
The commentary tracks are a huge plus - you don't just get a Classic Bad Film, you get to hear from someone who loves a movie unconditionally and explains why, and it's hard not to get caught up in his enthusiasm. It's not quite the way Paul Karasik's editorial coda transformed I SHALL DESTROY ALL THE CIVILIZED PLANETS! from a collection of lost comic books into a powerful work of literary nonfic (add that one to your list, btw - amazing), but there's something close enough going on that I was reminded of it. Part of the Show, then, is seeing a fan's love for the unloveable, and damn it if it doesn't affect you, too, a bit.
I'll admit it - the entire time i was writing this review, I thinking of bouncing quarters (PINNNNNG!) off Caroline Munro's abs.
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