Cult Camp Classics Volume 1: Sci-Fi Thrillers

January 28, 2012 7 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

If you’re a fan of B movies, then you have to be thrilled with Warner’s new series, titled Cult Camp Classics. The initial wave of four volumes offers themed collections, each with three films on three discs. Warner has done B movie enthusiasts a huge favor by offering these collections at low prices, so fans can put together quite an impressive archive. This review covers Volume 1: Sci/Fi Thrillers, with three classic B movies, Attack of the 50 Foot Woman, Queen of Outer Space, and The Giant Behemoth. These are the kind of flicks you’d see in a double or triple feature at a drive-in, just pure camp. Attack is quite hilarious, with memorable special effects and while the movie is bad, its short and makes a fun watch. An odd inclusion is The Giant Behemoth, as its a solid movie that tries to be more than the typical monster mash. Not an instant classic, but quite good and while not as cult camp as the others, is a most welcome addition. Queen of Outer Space is 100% pure camp, with Zsa Zsa Gabor on deck and some of the most dated, but hilarious lines around. This a nice selection of sci/fi madness and all are worth a look. So I recommend this first volume and at this price, I hope to see many more of these from Warner.

1. Attack of the 50 Foot Woman- Nancy is fresh off a stint in a mental ward, but she doesn’t intend to relax upon her return. She has learned that her husband Harry had a little fun while she was gone, fun that involved a beautiful woman named Honey. He plans to take as much of Nancy’s wealth as he can, then run off with Honey to live the good life. But Nancy isn’t going to let that happen, especially after a run in with aliens that leaves her quite changed. Now Nancy has the kind of power she could only dream of, so Harry had better hope her wrath isn’t in proportion to her new stature…

2. Queen of Outer Space- A lot of men dream of being surrounded by countless females, but when one group of space explorers lands on an all female planet, they learn how difficult life can be. The planet the crew lands on forbids the mere presence of men, which is bad news, since the crew is all males. In addition to the hatred of the male of the species, The Queen of the planet plans to take out Earth, just for good measure. But not all of her fellow females despise the men that much and for some like Talleah, believe the males could serve a purpose, or several. As the sides clash over the masculine crew members, which side will win out and what will become of the space crew?

3. The Giant Behemoth- London has survived global warfare and internal turmoil, but it is about to face a challenge on a much larger scale. Thanks to high levels of radiation in the water, air, and plants, mutations have started to surface, most harmless, but some quite dangerous. The threat that London faces is a most lethal mutation, known as a Thunder Lizard, a huge reptile like something from the era of dinosaurs. In addition to the raw power that comes from such immense size, this creature also boasts a sick radiation ray, which leaves pure destruction behind. In order to battle this monster, mankind will have face it head on, but is there a chance to defeat this powerful, rampaging beast?

Video: How does it look?

Attack of the 50 Foot Woman and The Giant Behemoth are presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, while Queen of Outer Space is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen. I didn’t expect too much from these transfers, but all look quite solid and should delight fans. You will see some grain and debris at times, but that is unavoidable in these cases and overall, I think good prints were used here. Attack and Behemoth are black and white, so contrast is important and in both cases, black levels are up to snuff. Queen has color to spare, with an insane color scope that has to be seen. So while a little rough at times, these movies look good and I think fans will approve.

Audio: How does it sound?

All three films sport the original mono audio and while unremarkable, I found all three to be acceptable. I heard minimal flaws really, as harshness, hiss, and distortion were never problems. These are older, more limited mono soundtracks, so some of the audio comes off a little thin, but that can’t be helped. The audio in all three cases is up to par and with movies like these, you don’t need a lot of added bells and whistles. All three films also offer subtitles in English and French.

Supplements: What are the extras?

In a most welcome move, we have an audio commentary on each movie, with film historian Tom Weaver covering Queen and Attack, joined on each by one of the film’s stars. These prove to be brisk, entertaining sessions, a skillful blend of humorous memories and Weaver’s incredible insight into the movies. This is in contrast to Behemoth’s track, in which special effects veterans Phil Tippett and Dennis Muren handle the honors. Their information is mostly second or third hand stuff, which dilutes the insight, while their critiques of the movie could have been left out. This release also includes theatrical trailers for Behemoth and Queen, but sadly, not for Attack of the 50 Foot Woman.

Disc Scores