Movie Review: Forbidden World (1982)

Well, that was different.

Admittedly, I got a little tricked by the cover; the creature looks more bug-like than the movie implied for most of it, but toward the end, yep, that’s a big ol’ bug in space. I’m not sure how a (possibly?) person-bacteria hybrid starts to look like the Xenomorph crossbred with an Isz (anyone +/- 5 years from my age might remember these from MTV’s Oddities’ “The Maxx”). But it did, and it was gross and bug like.

Forbidden World — but the monster is way uglier in the film!

This movie is a total change of pace, and that may be one of the reasons I enjoyed it: I went from idiots on Earth to idiots in space. How did our formula make the trip? Well, we’ve got:

– A whole crew of mad scientists.
– One space yokel as their muscle.
– A genetic experiment gone awry.
– A foolish attempt to cover up and/or retain the mutant.
– A corrupt authority figure.

All of that gets thrown into the stew pot along with some pretty gross visuals as the monster seems to kill people by turning them into skeletons surrounded by gooey gore. There’s also a scene where I’m pretty sure the monster stabbed a woman through the shoulder by starting at her business area, so that’s pretty much as not cool as it gets. Seriously, there’s a lot of gross and the monster itself is gross when we see it, from larval stage to full on giant space bug.

You can almost smell it through the screen.

The acting is actually mostly decent other than the space equivalent of the “final girl” shrieking toward the end. That grated on me a bit. There’s a lot of loud toward the end of this movie, so turn the volume down. Or up, if you hate your neighbors.

In addition to the gore, there’s a strange amount of nudity which means you probably won’t want to watch this with your parents, kids, siblings, or a preacher.

All that said, it was a nice change of pace, and that plus the general B-movie feel makes this 80s movie drag the bug films from 1-1 to 2-1. Next week we’ll see what happens with our fourth and final bug movie: As a programming note, I’m having trouble finding appealing movies fitting my original criteria (70s/80s bug/water monster B-movies), so I’m adding a third category: Summer activities! This opens up a lot of 70s/80s movies for review, including stuff centered around summer camps. (And if you recall, I really enjoyed the Friday the 13th franchise. I despise campers.)

So, Forbidden World gets a B: It’s a solid B-movie.

Report card:
Runtime: An hour seventeen.
Acting: Good given what they were working with.
Effects: Decent for the time.
Violence: And how.
Dead Townsfolk: The monster kills like five people and one robot.
Gun Use: Just space guns.
Gore: Yes, and how.
Creepy? Not really.
Monster Type? A giant bacteria hybrid.
Monster Ick Factor: Ick with a capital ! at the end.
Funny? Not really.
Nudity: There is a lot of weird gratuitous nudity including weird strobing flashbacks (and flash forwards?).
Pet Death: No.
Pacing: It’s pretty constantly getting better after the stupid arcade opener.

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