Forbidden World

August 27, 2013 at 11:58 pm (7 Heads, Forbidden World) (, , , )

Forbidden World – 1982 – United States

In Forbidden World’s beginning, a soldier and an android wage a spaceship dogfight. Shortly after, Forbidden World stops imitating Star Wars (1977) and starts imitating Alien (1979) as the pair reach a research facility on a desolate planet and help scientists destroy an amok genetic experiment. In the claustrophobic dungeon-like facility, the soldier meets a stoic cynical black dude, a grungy wild-eyed scientist, a calculating secretive scientist, and two babes desperate to ball for no good reason. Also roaming the halls is an intelligent, aggressive mutant monster intent on eating everybody. Following lots of splashing gore, a scientist removes his cancerous tumor and feeds it to the monster, thereby killing it.

Produced by Roger Corman, Forbidden World is derivative. Beyond its unoriginal premise, almost every aspect of the film can be traced to another source. The roguish soldier is Han Solo, and the snide android is C-3PO (looking like a Storm Trooper). The staff of the research facility resembles the crew of the Nostromo, and the monster’s elongated cranium recalls the titular Alien. Recycled spaceship footage from Corman’s Battle Beyond the Stars also makes an appearance.

While lacking creativity, Forbidden World is at least entertainingly sleazy. Nudity and gore are copious, occasionally occurring simultaneously in the case of a scene where a screwing couple is intercut with someone being messily mauled. The repulsive bits are too numerous to mention. A completely dissolved man lives for days as a squirming, fleshy mass. Chest cavity surgery is performed without anesthetic. And there is a lab full of genuine animal corpses.

But spewing blood and puke does not make suspense. As a result, Forbidden World is more amusing than terrifying, evidenced by tales of uproarious laughter at test screenings. In one hilarious scene, the monster interfaces with a computer and a woman tries to communicate with it.  At a terminal she types “Can we coexist?” to which the monster replies “PLEASE STAND BY…” and then kills her.

Cinema history is cluttered with Star Wars and Alien clones. If nothing else, Forbidden World is an enjoyable example. It is often compared to Corman’s Galaxy of Terror (1981), which also borrows from Alien as well as Forbidden Planet (1956). See both together for a super plagiaristic double feature.

Rating: 7/10 Shrunken Heads. It earns heads for the grossest slimy viscera.

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