Author Archives

Janne Wass

Janne is a journalist and magazine editor from Finland, who in his spare time runs the science fiction blog Scifist.

Jungle Hell

UFO’s hover over Sabu & friends as they investigate the mystery of radioactive rocks found in India, among an endless stream of stock footage elephants. This 1956 curio was cobbled together from a failed TV pilot. 1/10

X the Unknown

A primordial radioactive mud creature threatens the Scottish countryside in Hammer’s taut and atmospheric 1956 Quatermass knockoff. As a film it is a footnote, but notable for gathering the Hammer Horror roster. 6/10

The Werewolf

Evil scientists turn an unwitting family man into a werewolf and let him loose in a sleepy small town. Made on a shoestring with bit-part actors, this 1956 Columbia melodrama packs some nice visuals and interesting, adult themes. 6/10.

Satellite in the Sky

The UK’s 1956 answer to Destination Moon is visually impressive, but marred by a tedious script and uninspired direction. But it does offer a chance to see Lois Maxwell before her Miss Moneypenny fame, and Thespian Donald Wolfit in a space suit. 5/10

Los platillos voladores

A poor young couple escape their small town in a rocket car and crash land in Mexico City, where they are mistaken for Martians. This Mexican 1956 musical comedy is thin on plot and substance, but charms with its good cast and sincerity. 6/10

Hilfe ich bin unsichtbar

An amateur inventor turns himself invisible, and is only able to reverse the effect by drinking alcohol. The gag is all that carries this German 1951 SF comedy, and it doesn’t carry it far enough, despite a great cast and and a seasoned director. 2/10

Croisières sidérales

A company offers “time trips” 25 years into the future through the science of time dilation in space. It’s a passable entertainment romp, but this French 1942 comedy fails to make anything interesting out of the intriguing premise. 5/10

The World Will Shake

What would happen if a machine could predict the time of death of every living person? This forgotten French SF melodrama from 1939 has a remarkably well-crafted script and a superb cast led by Claude Dauphin and Erich von Stroheim. 7/10

Once in a New Moon

The gravity from a passing “dead star” pulls a small British village into space in this 1934 comedy. Class tensions and romantic rivalry come to the fore as the villagers try to adapt to their new roles as inhabitants of Earth’s newest moon. 4/10