In 1988, young Roger Corman protégé Jim Wynorski made a bet with his boss, declaring that he could direct a remake of Corman’s 1957 schlock-fest Not Of This Earth in the same 12-day schedule with the same budget (adjusted for inflation, of course). Wynorski succeeded, and the end result was an energetic, goofy and ultimately very entertaining movie that manages to rise above its budgetary limitations with sheer charm.
Incidentally, the film also features the first (and last) legal nude scenes of Traci Lords’ career. I remember that being a pretty big deal to my older brother back when we watched the movie on video a few years later.
Since the glory days of Chopping Mall and Deathstalker II, Jim Wynorski has split his time between helming ridiculous monster mash-ups like Dinocroc V Supergator and the upcoming Piranhaconda (starring Michael Madsen!) and softcore parody flicks like Cleavagefield and Para-Knockers Activity.
I actually watched several minutes of Cleavagefield on Cinemax last year and was immediately taken aback by the giant monster supposedly stalking a large group of busty co-eds constantly searching for excuses to undress and make out with each other. It looked like a Pete’s Dragon parade balloon.
But according to the excellent B-movie blog Undead Backbrain, Jim Wynorski has returned from the skin flick wilderness with not one, but two impending remakes of “beloved” cult classics. After recently wrapping production on his remake of 1959’s The Giant Gila Monster (now simply titled Gila!), Wynorski has announced his intentions to helm a remake of 1964’s infamous Santa Claus Conquers The Martians, the utterly bizarre curiosity that was mercilessly lampooned on a classic episode of Mystery Science Theatre 3000. According to Wynorski:
“It’s a show that screams out to be remade with today’s modern technology.”
If you say so. I just don’t understand why this would be seen as a suitable target for a remake. You’re never going to recapture the flavor of that absolute misguided cruise missile of a film. It almost seems too weird to exist as it is, like some half-remembered fever dream. What’s the point?
Who am I kidding? I’ll see it regardless, because I’m pretty sure I’ve seen everything else Jim Wynorski has directed. I even own his absolutely terrible Vampirella movie on DVD. It even manages to poorly rip off Anne Rice’s novel The Vampire Lestat with Roger Daltrey as a rock star vampire named Vlad. How much worse could this be?
Wynorski warns that Santa Claus Conquers The Martians Redux will commence filming this summer somewhere in Indiana.