Beyond The Planet Of The Apes: Six Seventies Sci-Fi Movies Worth Remaking
1972’s Doomsday Machine is widely considered one of the worst films in existence, in the same orbital neighborhood as Ed Wood’s Plan 9 From Outer Space, only with far less vision going into its creation. For one, it saw two different directors (and the uncredited Herbert J. Leder) come and go during production, which was halted at one point and then started up again at a later date without any of the original stars or locations. As if the flagrant use of preexisting footage wasn’t bad enough, it essentially turns into a different movie near the end. And it’s pretty glorious, if shoddy MST3K-ready cinema is what you’re looking for.
For a remake, I say someone should approach it like a sci-fi Tropic Thunder, where the layers of filmmaking are pulled back in a satirical way. The film’s plot is standard ridiculousness: China has the titular doomsday device and they’re going to blow everything up, so the U.S. sends a space crew to Venus, and TWISTS happen. Whether this would be a tongue-in-cheek approach to the concept like a Larry Blamire (The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra) movie or a faux making-of Doomsday Machine documentary, a remake of some kind needs to happen, and then theaters across the country could play the original in celebration of the remake, and that’s all anybody really needs in their lives. – Nick