At a secret laboratory located just a few miles from the local prison, scientist Dirk Green (Michael Whalen) is working with Steve Dayton (Richard Travis) to build a missile that’s capable of flying to the Moon. Dirk’s obsession about traveling to the moon is not just scientific. Dirk is secretly from the Moon himself and is desperate to return.
Dirk gets his opportunity when two convicts escape from the prison and hide out in his rocket. Dirk agrees not to turn Gary (Tommy Cook) and Lon (Gary Clarke) over to the authorities but only if they agree to help him fly the rocket to the Moon. It turns out that it doesn’t take any special training to fly a rocket. According to this film, you don’t even have to worry about oxygen in space. Anyone can travel to the Moon, even two escaped convicts who have only had about an hour’s worth of instruction in how to pilot a rocket! Gary and Lon agree because dying in space is preferable to serving out a prison sentence.
Once Dirk, Gary, and Lon are in space, they discover that Steve and his fiancee, June (Cathy Downs), have stowed away on the ship. Gary takes a liking to June but Steve tells him to back off. After a journey through a meteor field, the missile finally lands on the Moon, which is ruled over by The Lido (K.T. Stevens), a beautiful woman who enforces order through the help of a giant spider.
This afternoon, Lisa and I watched Missile to the Moon because today is May 4th, which is also known as Star Wars Day. (May the 4th be with you, get it?) Since every Star Wars film has already been reviewed on this site, I had to find a different science fiction film to review for today. And because Lisa claimed Starcrash for herself, I got stuck with Missile to the Moon.
Missile to the Moon is science fiction with an emphasis on the fiction. In this film, space travel is easy and certain parts of the moon have a breathable atmosphere. Not to mention, of course, that there are all sorts of creatures living on the Moon. It’s easy to laugh at Missile to the Moon today but this movie was made before anyone had ever set foot on the Moon so, for all people knew, there could have been aliens and giant spiders living underneath the surface. In fact, maybe there still are. It’s been a while since anyone went up there and checked.
The main thing I liked about Missile to the Moon was the implication that anyone, no matter how dumb, can learn how to fly a spaceship in under an hour. That’s what we all believed when we were kids. Want to go into space? Just put me in the pilot’s seat, show me where the booster button is, and let’s go into hyperspace! The other thing I liked about the movie is that the Moon was populated by attractive belly dancers. That’s exactly what you want to find on another planet. The paper mache spiders were pretty cool too.
It’s a dumb movie but I enjoyed it. I’d rather go to the movie’s Moon than the real Moon.