For Reel


Queen of Outer Space (1958)
June 12, 2016, 9:57 pm
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: Edward Bernds
2.5 Stars
Queen of Outer SpaceFour men find themselves abandoned millions of miles away from home on a planet inhabited by women hellbent on destroying Earth. Their response, of course, is to call them dolls while gawking at their chests. Queen of Outer Space is the brainchild of the shockingly esteemed writing team of Ben Hect and Charles Beaumont, who imagine a society ruled by women who haven’t had the pleasure of a man’s love. Some of the men’s dialogue—”Why don’t you girls knock off all this gestapo stuff and try to be a little friendly?”—straddles the line between familiar 1950s chauvinism and genuine satire of gender politics, with the men occasionally coming off as buffoons in their nonchalance towards the feminine threat. That is not to say that Beaumont intended to write a postmodern feminist fable,  but the dynamic between the sexes is more interesting than a purposely idiotic genre film might lead one to expect. The picture has the advantage of recycling costumes and sets from better sci-fi films and, in CinemaScope, it actually looks relatively first rate despite the micro-budget. One’s enjoyment of the picture will correlate directly with how much they smile at the title, but even cynics should be amused by exchanges like: “Perhaps this is a civilization that exists without sex.” “You call that a civilization?!”