Sunday, 27 November 2011

Lunar Disco

'Moon Zero Two' is a fairly unique Hammer film. It's not much good, but it's unique. The studio had made sci fi films before (most notably the 'Quatermass' series) but they tended to be earthbound, set in the present and rather serious, 'MZ2' (as I call it, but not often - it doesn't come up that much) is set in space, in the future and was described, as you can see from the poster, as the 'first Moon Western'. And it is a Western, a proper John Wayne style adventure complete with showdowns, saloons, dancing girls, territorial disputes and bar room brawls, all filtered through the prevailing Carnaby Street trend for garish pop art colour and space age plastic fashions and decor, including some iconic chairs designed by Eero Arnio.

It's a piece of fluff, but fluff's alright, isn't it? I rather like some fluff every now and again, especially if its vaguely groovy. Despite being a box office flop, 'MZ2' was released a year before that other kitsch lunar colony TV classic 'UFO', and may well have influenced Gerry Anderson in terms of setting, costume and look, although Gerry would never admit that. As it is, there are enough disparities between the productions (not least in terms of conscious vs unconscious camp) that it's not really a big deal (though his later 'Space 1999' happily rips off both productions). 

PS like 'UFO', 'MZ2' has a great soundtrack by jazz big band leader Don Ellis, which sadly remains unreleased. If you're reading this, and you have a record label, sort that out for me, please.

1 comment:

  1. You can get the title track as an MP3 download off Amazon for 69p.