NOT OF THIS EARTH ** USA 1988 80 mins

There’s a delicious irony that Traci Lords’ first “respectable” (read: “non-porn”) movie was a low budget remake of a 50’s Roger Corman flick directed by Jim Wynorski. The reworked NOT OF THIS EARTH knows its audience: the first couple of minutes feature a busty, topless blonde offed mid-shag and drained of blood. The title sequence is a typically frugal cost-saving Corman exercise, irrelevantly incorporating gory and / or explosive footage from earlier New World movies, including the shock end of HUAMNOIDS FROM THE DEEP, the worm rape from GALAXY OF TERROR and even a stop-motion creature bit from PIRANHA. The premise is much the same as the original movie, with the addition of tasteless references to AIDS and an interlude with three buxom hookers. The monotone-speaking, black suited Mr Johnson (Arthur Johnson) is an alien whose initial appearance (asking for an urgent blood transfusion) is accompanied by a Theremin sound effect. He is part of a race of telepathic aliens wanting a live human for vivisection purposes, en route to a probable conquest of the Earth. This talky, mostly gore-less flick is mostly an excuse to get Miss Lords at her prime in a sexy nurse’s outfit. This isn’t a bad excuse at all for a movie, and Wynorski ensures that, at regular intervals, she is either in a too-small bikini, exchanging porn-ish innuendo with Lenny Juliano (as Mr Johnson’s leery, smarmy assistant), bending over, wandering around in a gravity-defying night-dress or having sex with the world’s dullest cop.

Review by Steven West

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