: : : Dark Star

Story

The Dark Star's crew is on a 20-year mission to destroy unstable planets and make way for future colonization. The smart bombs they use to effect this zoom off cheerfully to do their duty. But unlike Star Trek, in which order prevails, the nerves of this crew are becoming increasingly frayed to the point of psychosis. Their captain has been killed by a radiation leak that also destroyed their toilet paper. "Don't give me any of that 'Intelligent Life' stuff," says Commander Doolittle when presented with the possibility of alien life. "Find me something I can blow up." When an asteroid storm causes a malfunction, Bomb Number 20 (the most cheerful character in the film) has to be repeatedly talked out of exploding prematurely, each time becoming more and more peevish, until they have to teach him phenomenology to make him doubt his existence. And the film's apocalyptic ending, lifted almost wholly from Ray Bradbury's story "Kaleidoscope," has the remaining crew drifting away from each other in space, each to a suitably absurd end. Absurd, surreal, and very funny. John Carpenter once described Dark Star as "Waiting for Godot in space." Made at a cost of practically nothing, the film's effects are nevertheless impressive and, along with the number of ideas crammed into its 83 minutes, ought to shame makers of science fiction films costing hundreds of times more. The DVD contains both the original 68-minute release and the director's full version. --Jim Gay

DVD Features

  • Color
  • Widescreen

Cast

Brian NarelleLt. Doolittle
Cal KuniholmBoiler
Dre PahichTalby
Dan O'BannonSgt. Pinback
John CarpenterTalby

Recent threads
  • Genre: Sci-Fi Movies
  • Director: John Carpenter
  • Producer: VCI
  • Length: 83 min
  • Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
  • Theatrical Release
    North AmericaJan 1, 1974
  • Ratings
    North AmericaG
  • DVD Release
    North AmericaJul 3, 2001
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