1965’s Attack of the Eye Creatures is an odd little movie.
It starts, as so many bad sci-fi movies do, with Peter Graves narrating about how the government has been keeping an eye on a flying saucers that’s apparently been hovering over the Earth for quite some time. However, a quick visit to Project Visitor reveals that the soldiers assigned to protect us are more interested in using their monitoring equipment to spy on teenagers making out in their cars!
Total invasion of privacy!
Of course, what’s particularly sad about the whole thing is that you know that’s totally what would happen in real life as well. Give a group of people the power to spy on anyone in the world? Of course they’re going to end up spying on people fooling around in cars! That’s one reason why Earth is just as doomed today as it was in 1966.
Anyway, the flying saucer does eventually land. Unfortunately, our government is too incompetent to do anything about it. The aliens inside turn out to be …. well, not that impressive. For one thing, they don’t speak. There are none of the grandiose threats to conquer the world that we’ve come to expect from aliens. At the same time, we also don’t have to hear about how the rest of the universe is disappointed in us for polluting our planet and blowing each other up so that’s a good thing. So often, intergalactic visitors can be so judgmental! Anyway, these aliens are lumpy and gray and they’ve got several eyes. They don’t really look that impressive. Seriously, check this jerk out:
As I said, the government turns out to be pretty useless when it comes to battling the aliens and the local police are skeptical that any intergalactic visitors would bother to land in their crappy little town. Fortunately, as always happens whenever the controlling legal authorities fail to do their job, there are teenagers and they’re willing to do what needs to be done to protect the world!
Of course, if Stan (John Ashley) and Susan (Cynthia Hull) are going to rally the troops against the aliens, they’re going to have to borrow someone’s phone. That’s going to mean convincing the local old man to let them use his phone. The old man, who has had enough of those crazy kids with all their kissing and the jazzy lingo, is more interested in using his shotgun to keep people off his lawn.
Meanwhile, two drunks decide that they want to get in on all this alien business. They both later die and no one in the movie seems to care. That’s just the type of movie that this is….
….and if it sounds familiar, that’s probably because you’ve seen the 1957 drive-in classic, Invasion of the Saucer Men! Basically, in the mid-60s, American International Pictures commissioned Texas filmmaker Larry Buchanan to remake some of their most successful drive-in films. Apparently, the plan was to sell them to television. So, Buchanan took the script for Saucer Men, tossed in some scenes of the government spying on people (Buchanan was a noted conspiracy theorist who previously directed The Trial of Lee Harvey Oswald), and called his film Attack Of the Eye Creatures!
Yet, while Invasion of the Saucer Men was a genuinely clever sci-fi satire, Attack of the Eye Creatures is done in by Buchanan’s inability to keep his story moving at a steady pace and it doesn’t help that the iconic Saucer Men have been replaced by men who appear to be wearing trash bags. Attack of the Eye Creatures is an unfortunate remake and one that should be viewed only after you’ve watched Invasion of the Saucer Men and maybe every other public domain sci-fi film that’s currently on YouTube.