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Forbidden World
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by Jack Sommersby

"A Pleasing Creature Feature."
4 stars

Check your brain at the door and just sit back and let it pleasurably work on you.

The Roger Corman production Forbidden World is exactly what I hoped it'd be - an enjoyable B-movie ripoff of Ridley Scott's extraordinary 1979 sci-horror classic Alien with plenty of gore and nudity to sate the tastes for undemanding viewers. Corman, a legendary low-budget producer, has ponied up just under one-million dollars this time (not all that small an amount), and while the sets and even the costumes were reportedly recycled from his Galaxy of Terror of the previous year the movie is technically adept and never boo-hiss-worthy. What there is of the meager plot consists of Commander Mike Colby (Jesse Vint), the best officer in the federation, arriving at at the isolated planet Xarbia where at a huge scientific compound a genetic-engineering experiment has gone terribly awry - a small organism with a metabolic rate one-hundred and fifty times that of humans has escaped and is continually getting bigger. Colby wants to blast the thing to smithereens (he makes clear his philosophy on inimical non-humans, "If it moves and it's not one of us, I shoot it"), but the lead scientist wants to preserve it if possible but isn't prepared for both its quintessential hostility and cunning intelligence; it doesn't take long before its exponentially bigger self starts devouring the humans one by one. The debuting director Allan Holzman smartly keeps our sightings of the creature as sparse as possible to hide the mediocre special effects, though what we do glimpse possesses a decent amount of primal terror (like Scott's extraterrestrial it consists of a lot of razor-sharp teeth) and is by and large acceptable-looking as far as these things go. There's no shortage of blood to be had during the proceedings, and with two beauties in the cast, June Chadwick and Dawn Dunlap, there's bountiful gratuitous boobs and buns - the outpost doesn't get many visitors, and Colby succeeds in seeing these lonely babes in their birthday suits in record time for most mortal men. Vint, a character actor in his first leading role, is solid and appealing as the no-nonsense hero, and the dialogue, penned by the three credited screenwriters, surprisingly doesn't suck. Oh, some of the characters do palpably moronic things like getting too close to a known danger zone (the nadir is certainly the two women in nothing but bathrobes trying to communicate with the beast via computer keyboard), but you gotta hand it to the movie in coming up with a novel way of doing away with the flesh-consuming adversary using a scientist's cancerous liver cut out with a scalpel while he's still alive. Sitting through the agreeable Forbidden World won't improve your life in any discernible way, but it's awfully fun for what it is and packs plenty of color and energy into practically every scene in this seventy-seven-minute guilty pleasure.

Gets the job done.

link directly to this review at https://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=25085&reviewer=327
originally posted: 10/28/20 09:06:22
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USA
  07-May-1982 (R)

UK
  N/A

Australia
  N/A


Directed by
  Allan Holzman

Written by
  Tim Curnen

Cast
  Jesse Vint
  Dawn Dunlap
  June Chadwick
  Scott Paulin
  Michael Bowen



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