Battle Beyond the Sun
(1963) is a clunky retooling of
the 1959 Soviet sci fi masterpiece Niebo
Zowiet. American B-movie king
Roger Corman bought the North American rights and brought in an
up-and-coming young film director named Francis Ford Coppola to rework
the movie for audiences in the U.S.
Under the pseudonym Thomas Colchart, Coppola turned the
original plot -- a Russian space crew sent to find out the fate of an
earlier mission to intercept an alien probe -- into a potboiler about a
Russian/American space race. In it, the American astronauts wind up
battling some nasty-looking monsters, including one that resembles a
certain part of the female anatomy -- with teeth!
The film’s original Russian title translates into
Beyond the Sun no doubt sounded more exciting
and thus more likely to draw in viewers, despite the fact that the
action doesn’t take place beyond the sun and
real battle in it.
Catch a ride on the
flying saucer back
to the Outer Space Art Gallery homepage