Adamantium Bullet

31 Days Of Horror: SATURN 3

For the next 31 days, we here at Adamantium Bullet will be reviewing one horror film a day leading up to Halloween. Each film will be horrific, terrifying, chilling, pulse-pounding, or flat-out awful. All will be endured in honor of the season. Expect SPOILERS. Welcome to Adamantium Bullet’s “All 80s” edition of 31 DAYS OF HORROR.

In this episode, J Bryant and AngieBee discuss the screwy 1980 sci-fi slasher SATURN 3 starring Kirk Douglas, Farrah Fawcett, and Harvey Keitel.

Adam (Kirk Douglas) and Alex (Farrah Fawcett) are two scientists stationed deep beneath the barren surface of Saturn’s third moon, Titan. They live together in idyllic isolation in a space-age Eden, seeking new forms of food for an exhausted planet Earth. Their perfect world is interrupted when Benson (Harvey Keitel) arrives as Saturn goes into eclipse and cuts off communication with the rest of the solar system. Aided by his ’helper robot’ Hector, James reduces life to one single purpose …survival. The robot becomes violently unmanageable. For Adam and Alex, their only hope is to flee, but the homicidal robot stands in their way. Produced and directed by legendary filmmaker Stanley Donen (SINGIN' IN THE RAIN, CHARADE, and SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS), Saturn 3 is a pulse-pounding study in sci-fi suspense! Feel that pulse pound!

Three humans, one dog, and one robot.

In a very FRANKENSTEIN-esque moment, Benson’s robot buddy Hector turns on him, smacks him around, chops off his hand, decapitates him, and then decides to wear his decapitated head as a hat for a bit. Believe it or not, this series of events was much worse in the first cut of the film. Producer Lord Lew Grade ordered a sequence where Hector mutilated Benson’s corpse on a laboratory table cut because he found it distasteful.

Topless Alex, totally nude Adam, and loads of exposed circuits and gears from Hector.

See MOST MEMORABLE KILL or NAKEDNESS. “Robot Wearing A Human Head As A Hat” and “Topless Farrah Fawcett” are such good moments that they would be the SIGNATURE MOMENTS of any film, not just SATURN 3.

Based on what goes down in the first few minutes of SATURN 3, NASA - or Space Force, Space Federation, Intergalactic Super Squad, Space Race Go Go, or whatever the f*ck it’s called - has really gotten lax with their shuttle launch security in the future. Benson not only murders Captain James (Douglas Lambert) minutes before he set to take off to 'Saturn 3', but he straight-up jacks his identity. As in, he puts on the Captain’s helmet, runs out onto the tarmac to the single passenger shuttlecraft space bug ship thing, hops on board in front of fifty crewmen, and just takes off. No one checks his credentials. No one checks his spacesuit. No one stops to see why he’s literally running to the ship. No one questions a single thing. Benson just kills a guy, assumes his identity, and steals a spaceship. That’s a next level IDIOT MOMENT on the part of Space Team USA right there.

As mentioned in the IDIOT MOMENT category, Benson murders Captain James. He does so by popping open an airlock and launching James into the deep dark of outer space. Not in one piece, mind you, but multiple pieces because there happens to be a wire mesh railing thing in front of the airlock which James is propelled through, shattering his body – now frozen presumably due to the instant freeze factor of outer space - into a bunch of little pieces. That portion of this bit isn’t very “WTF?!?” at all. Matter of fact, a kill like was pretty much standard issue for space-bound sci-fi horror films in the wake of ALIEN. The portion of this bit that is very “WTF?!?” is that the airlock Benson used to kill James was located in the ceiling of the space station’s locker room.

Let me repeat that: There was an airlock in the ceiling of a locker room on a space station. What kind of design genius thought that was a good idea?

I can imagine the meeting now, “Hey guys, I’m thinking on top of the regular locations for the airlocks, we might need one right over here in the locker room next to the showers. Set up an easy-to-use button to activate it over on the wall. Real simple stuff. Just push the button and the whole damn room becomes a tornado-y death trap. You know, just in case one of our brave young space cadets might need one of those.

> Harvey Keitel's voice was dubbed by Roy Dotrice.

> Hector The Robot stood over eight feet tall, and cost a little over $1 million to make.

> It took twenty people to animate the puppet for Hector The Robot.

> A few years after the release of this movie, Farrah Fawcett was a guest on 'The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson', in which Johnny casually poked fun at Fawcett's movie choices. "I remember you did a picture, I think it was called 'Saturn 3'." The audience laughed a bit as Fawcett squirmed, answering, "Originally they had a very good script, it was called 'The Helper', and it was a lot different from what we ended up shooting."

> It took seventy-nine craftsmen four months to build the massive interior set for the moon research station.

> A fantasy sequence featuring Farrah Fawcett in a skimpy PVC jumpsuit was filmed, but not used. Stills from the sequence were used extensively in publicity for the film on its original release.

> Sir Sean Connery was originally considered to play Adam, and Sir Michael Caine was initially in the running to portray Benson.

> Sixty two year old Kirk Douglas thought the clothes he wore in this movie were so comfortable, that he kept them after production wrapped.

> The USELESS KNOWLEDGE portion of this review was sourced from IMDB.

Posted by AngieBee

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