one long forgotten b movie gem begging for a dvd release has to be the classic 70s italian sci fi Humanoid. Richard ‘Jaws’ Kiel’s finest hour, his only leading role, and with bond babes Barbara Bach and Corinn Clery, its the cheesiest star wars rip off ever !! they sure dont make em like that anymore. the movies cool fansite has many rare pictures, articles, and even cast and crew contributions, together with a growing petition for an official dvd release in uk. any italian dvd release with english tongue too?
Hmm, cheesiest? I’m afraid you’ve never seen Star Crash.
don’t forget one of the best and inexpressive actor of italian bmovies leonard mann or Leonardo Manzella.
A brief review of The humanoid with images.
L’umanoide - year 1979
Director: Aldo Lado
2° unit director: Enzo G. Castellari
Actors: Richard Kiel (Golob - The humanoid)
Leonard Mann (L.Manzella) as Nick
Ivan Rassimov (Lord Graal)
Massimo Serato (Grande Fratello, Big Brother)
Corinne Cléry (Barbara)
Arthur Kennedy (Kraspin)
Barbara Bach (Lady Agata)
Marco Yeh (Tom Tom)
Subject: Adriano Bolzoni
Screenplay: Adriano Bolzoni, aldo Lado
Photography: Silvano Ippoliti (Technicolor)
Instrumental and electronic music soundtrack: Ennio Morricone (ed.RCA)
Scenography: Enzo Bulgarelli
Costumes: Luca Sabatelli
Special optical effects and space models and scenes: Armando Valcauda
Supervisor on special effects: Antonio Margheriti (Anthony M.Dawson)
Production: G.Venturini for Merope
Home video: VHS CHV Creazioni home video
Richard Kiel as Golob, after trasformed by Kraspin (mad scientist of the planet Noxon) in The humanoid with the “kappatron”.
The objective of Kraspin, Lady Agata, and Lord Graal is to conquer the planet Metropolis, where’s the reign of the Graal’s brother
"Grande Fratello-Big brother), with kappatron, substance that transform men in strong humanoids…
Here is The humanoid, interpreted by Kiel like a man of Neanderthal… :):
and this is his “pet” (mmh…is not much expressive…) :
The mad scientist kraspin:
Massimo Serato as The big brother- il grande fratello (no, he’s not the tv format…), the wise governor of Metropolis:
The very inexpressive Leonardo Manzella, in the part of Nick, an hero of Metropolis:
Corinne clery, as Barbara, the only people who can the secrets about kappatron, kill-target of Kraspin:
The strange figure of tom tom, a little boy with paranormal powers. He can resolve every situation (and perhaps the holes in the film script…IMO)
The couple of captives of planet Noxon, lady agata (Barbara Bach is much more expressive than Caroline Munro in Starcrash, imo!) and Lord graal (Rassimov ever covered-up
by the mask and the helmet…Lado could engage anyone…:)):
A scene of “maquettes”, a space scene by Valcauda (also author of effects in Starcrash)
The soundtrack by Ennio Morricone, edited by RCA:
01- un uomo nello spazio
02- estasi stellare
03- infanzia evoluzione e ritorno
04- informale primo
05- trasmissione difettosa, rotazione e rivoluzione
06- incontri a sei
08- informale secondo
Produced after Starcrash of Luigi Cozzi (1978),and after the planetary success of Star wars, this movie try to replicate the success of these films, and want to imitate Star wars, but the results are not of the same level of Starcrash (obviosly not of the same level of star wars…). We must remember the high profits realized by Cozzi.
Like said by Enzo Castellari: “Despite a good budget and the fairly good action scenes shooted by me, the result is not successful” (M.Giusti, Stracult, p.889).
The results are cheesy, a degeneration of our italian vision of sci-fi, if I think to 4…3…2…1 morte of Primo Zeglio, or Terrore nello spazio of Mario Bava,
or the other works of Margheriti: Space men, Criminali della galassia, i diafanoidi vengono da Marte…etc.), low-budget but high ideas realizations.
The difference about Starcrash and The humanoid are that the first had become a cult,but not this one: there is a reason.
(but for enthusiastic videoarcheologists is another movie to collect, and despite all certainly is not a torment to watch it).
Any other review or comment is welcome.
The Humanoid is suitable viewing for those who thought that Starcrash was too intellectually challenging.
It is the kind of movie that is like whacking yourself over the head with a cricket bat with a nail through the end of it. Though hitting yourself with this implement would be more preferable, because you would actually FEEL your brain beginning to suffer damage, whereas The Humanoid will permeate your grey cells and before you know it, your IQ will have decreased by a hefty percentage.
Apart from Barbara Bach & Corrine Clery being easy on the eye, it’s pretty heavy going.
However there are several points of interest - or should that be “take the piss out of” -
A sozzled Arthur “which way to the bar” Kennedy overplaying the role of Kraspin in a manner that makes his performance in The Living Dead At Manchester Morgue look positively restrained. With the way that Kennedy liked to hit the sauce, we guess it was never a case of Kraspin Dry (geddit? the cooking oil - he probably drank that, too!)
Richard Kiel is, well, Richard Kiel, as the writers (presumably in an effort to save money on casting two actors - though with Kiel, it’s doubtful that he stretches to one - and decided to combine Han Solo & Chewbacca into the one character.
The ambitious - yet crap - effects, which look several generations down the line as far as the optical compositing is concerned. The blatant rip-off of Star Wars’ Star Destroyers is simply jaw-dropping in its audacity!
It is interesting that the movie contains several story ideas that later found their way into the Star Wars prequels, most notably having young boy as “the chosen one” and a “Jedi Council” of sorts.
Columbia own the distribution rights to it, so it is probably not going to see the light of day for the forseeable future. Whether that is necessarily a bad thing is open to conjecture…
I saw this in a double-bill with Mysterious Island (Harryhausen and Herbert Lom).
I’ve been keeping my eyes peeled for a DVD release of this. There’s an Italian VHS edition, but I’m holding out for a shiny disk.
I was always a fan of this entertaininng turd, but since I’ve become an admirer of some of Aldo Lado’s other 70s work my interest has been rekindled.