Mars movies

This part of the mediography is dedicated to movies that feature either Mars or Martians. The movies are sorted alphabetically by their title.

More information about the movies can be found in the Internet Movie Database.


[The] Angry Red Planet (1959):
The Angry Red Planet / Screenwriters: Ib Melchior ; Sidney W. Pink. Director: Ib Melchior. - USA : American International Pictures [etc.], 1959. - Color : English.
Contact is lost to the first manned flight to Mars after the ship has landed on the planet. It is almost given up, but then mission control manages to get the rocket back to Earth by remote control. There are only two survivors of the original crew of four, Colonel Thomas O'Bannion (Gerald Mohr) and Dr. Iris Ryan (Naura Hayden). O'Bannion is unconscious and has a strange disease, which the doctors do not know how to treat. Thus, they question Dr. Ryan, hoping to find a clue for a treatment, and she tells them what really happened on Mars... While this movie is rather stupid, it does have the advantage of being involuntarily funny.

Daisenki (1993):
Daisenki / Screenwriter: Katsumi Koide. Directors: Issei Kume ; Toshifumi Takizawa. - Japan : Magic Bus [etc.], 1993. - Color : Japanese.
[Based on the novel by Yoshio Aramaki. Released under the English title: "Big Wars (1993)".]
Rather mediocre Anime (Japanese animation movie). In the year 2416, the human race has colonized the planet Mars. An alien race called the "Gods", coming from the outer Solar System, invades the human territory, and Mars becomes the fighting place for a desperate war. Captain Akuh of the Mars Defence Forces, the captain of the big war ship Aoba, starts a relationship with the Secret Service agent Darsa Kerrigan, who is actually a spy for the "Gods". Rather than developing the potentially interesting story, the movie is obsessed with showing one battle sequence after the other, featuring huge war machines while getting nowhere.

Invaders from Mars (1986):
Invaders from Mars / Screenwriters: Don Jakoby ; Dan O'Bannon. Director: Tobe Hooper. - USA : Cannon Pictures, 1986. - Color : English.
[Based on the story by Richard Blake.]
Cheap and stupid remake of the sci-fi classic "Invaders from Mars (1953)". After watching an UFO landing close to his house, the U.S. school boy David Gardner (Hunter Carson) realizes that the aliens take control of the minds of the townspeople, starting right with his own parents. Together with the only grown-up who believes him, the school nurse Linda Magnusson (Karen Black), David does his best to stop the Martian invasion...

Mars Attacks! (1996):
Mars Attacks! / Screenwriter: Jonathan Gems. Director: Tim Burton. - USA : Warner Bros. [etc.], 1996. - Color : English.
[Based on the trading card series.]
Incredibly hilarious persiflage of the whole genre of "aliens-come-to-earth" type science fiction. The U.S. President James Dale (Jack Nicholson) is thrilled when he is told that the Hubble Space Telescope took images of a fleet of flying saucers coming from Mars to the Earth. While his military advisor General Decker (Rod Steiger) tells him to be cautious, his scientific advisor Professor Donald Kessler (Pierce Brosnan) is convinced that such a highly developed culture has to be peaceful. Nevertheless, during the first meeting of representatives, the Martians, ugly small green men with gigantic brains, start wreaking havoc, beginning right with frying a dove of peace that an over-enthusiastic bystander brought as a symbol of friendship...

Mission to Mars (2000):
Mission to Mars / Screenwriters: Jim Thomas ; John Thomas (V) ; Graham Yost. Director: Brian De Palma. - USA : Touchstone Pictures [etc.], 2000. - Color : English.
[Based on the story by Lowell Cannon, Jim Thomas, and John Thomas (V).]
This potentially promising scifi movie turns out to be extremely disappointing and is basically a cheap rip-off of the classic "2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)". It features all of the well-known clichés about Mars that I really can't stand anymore, starting right of with a "face on Mars"... Nevertheless, the special effects are good, and the depiction of the Martian surface is pretty neat. In the year 2020, Luke Graham (Don Cheadle) is selected to lead the first manned mission to Mars. A disaster takes place on the red planet, and while mission control does not really know what has happened to the crew, it is decided to launch a rescue mission, led by the recently widowed Jim McConnell (Gary Sinise).

Red Planet (2000):
Red Planet / Screenwriters: Chuck Pfarrer ; Jonathan Lemkin. Director: Antony Hoffman. - Australia ; USA : Warner Bros. [etc.], 2000. - Color : English.
[Based on the story by Chuck Pfarrer.]
Rather boring scifi movie with nice special effects.Since the Earth is becoming uninhabitable due to pollution, a terraforming project is launched to transform Mars into a new home for mankind. Rockets are shot to Mars that use atomic explosions to evaporate some part of the carbon dioxide ice at the poles to create a denser atmosphere, and carry algae that will produce oxygen. The procedure is running nicely, but after 20 years the increasing oxygen content in the atmosphere suddenly starts dropping for no apparent reason. A team of six American astronauts is assembled for a manned flight to Mars, among them the leader Commander Kate Bowman (Carrie-Anne Moss) and the engineer Gallagher (Val Kilmer). Their mission is to find out what is causing the trouble with the oxygen...

Space : Above and Beyond ; The Pilot (1995):
Space : Above and Beyond ; The Pilot / Screenwriters: Glen Morgan ; James Wong. Director: David Nutter. - USA : Fox Television [etc.], 1995. - Color : English.
This is the pilot to the awesome TV sci-fi series "Space: Above and Beyond (1995-1996)". I included it in the list because this particular episode has movie length and the planet Mars plays a central role. In the year 2063, Earth's first extra-solar colony on the planet Vesta is attacked and destroyed by aliens, which will later be called "Chigs" by the humans. Earth declares war on the aliens and for this reason stocks up its army. We are introduced to the main characters of the show, a bunch of new cadets that is to become the 58th Marine Corps, called the "Wild Cards", among them my favorites, their later leader Shane Vansen (Kristen Cloke) and the InVitro Cooper Hawkes (Rodney Rowland). The cadets are sent on a training exercise to Mars, where they observe an alien spacecraft that crashes on the Martian surface, close to their position. They decide to investigate the crash site and get into a fight with the surviving alien crew.

Total Recall 2070 : The Pilot (1999):
Total Recall 2070 : The Pilot / Screenwriter: ?. Director: Mario Azzopardi. - Canada : PolyGram Television [etc.], 1999. - Color : English.
This is the pilot to the TV sci-fi series "Total Recall 2070 (1999-)". The storyline is centered around the detective David Hume (Michael Easton) and his android partner, Ian Farve (Karl Pruner), who work for the "Citizen Protection Bureau" (CPB). Their investigations of a case regarding rogue androids in the end takes them from the Earth to colonies on Mars. While the movie is nicely done, it is a complete rip-off of "Blade Runner (1982)", regarding the story as well as the way the film is shot.

[The] War of the Worlds (1953):
The War of the Worlds / Screenwriter: Barré Lyndon. Director: Byron Haskin. - USA : Paramount Pictures, 1953. - Color : English.
[Based on the novel "The War of the Worlds (1898)" by Herbert George Wells.]
Very nice adaptation of H.G. Wells' classic scifi novel, updated to the USA of the 1950s. Martians attack the Earth, with hundreds of seemingly invulnerable flying machines that are armed with terrible weapons. Major cities are destroyed one after the other and nothing that the US army throws against them can stop the aliens. The scientist Dr. Clayton Forrester (Gene Barry), who is in awe of the Martians' capabilities, frantically searches a solution for the situation...


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