When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth is kind of dumb but I watched it again anyway. I've got a dvdr from a vhs tape that I recorded off the AMC cable channel back when Bob Dorian was still introducing movies. When I transfered the movies to disc I often kept the intros. Bob was also the voice on the tape recorder in Sam Raimi's first movie The Evil Dead. When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth came out on dvd in the US, but it disappeared pretty quickly. BestBuy put it out, and they packaged it with a G rating, only to find that they version on the disc was the one with some nudity. Oops. The put out a recall and copies are worth a pretty penny now. The copy I have isn't worth much, it's widescreen, but the nudity is cropped. The nudity doesn't make the movie any better. The movie has humans and dinosaurs living together and that's part of the attraction of this 1970 Hammer movie. They had done well with 1966's One Million Years BC, mostly because of Raquel Welch in a fur bikini. There was a second Hammer dino caveman movie called Slave Girls the following year, then WDRTE, which was followed by Creatures The World Forgot in 1971. I've seen all of those but Slave Girl. They're ok for the most part but the big attraction in When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth, at least for me, is the stop motion animation by Jim Danforth. He had worked with Ray Harryhausen on some of his movies and here he does a great job of animating the dinosaurs. Val Guest wrote and directed this nearly wordless movie. The cave people speak their own language of a couple of dozen words.
The brunette people are sacrificing some blondes to the sun when we join the primitive people in their animals skin and alligator masks. One of the blonde women jumps into the sea and escapes. That would be Victoria Vetri, in the fur bikini, in the picture above left. She was the September 1967 centerfold in Playboy. I know I have had one of those issues but it's long gone. Victoria goes off to live on her own and is befriended by a dinosaur. That's her pal up there in the picture on the right. I wish I had my own dinosaur, especially one that got it's own food.
It's a different world from ours, or perhaps they are telling a sort of legend, I'm not sure. The movie starts with an announcement that there is no moon and later in the movie the moon pops up into the sky for the first time. The primitive people act surprised and scared as giant stock footage titlewaves wash over them. That was one of the poorest parts of the movie. That shot of the wave kept getting repeated over and over again, until it became ludicrous. The dinosaurs don't care about the moon, they continue hunting and eating as if nothing happened. Yay, dinosaurs! They're so cool. They shot the movie in the Canary Islands and some of it sure looks nice. There's a lot of rocks. It's all pretty silly and mostly fun.
When Worlds Collide is a 1951 movie produced by George Pal and directed by Rudolph Maté. It's based on the 1931 Philip Wylie and Edwin Balmer novel of the same name. I read that novel ages ago, as well as the sequel which continues the story after the survivors arrive on Zyra. I thought they were pretty good but I can't remember if I saved them or not. I got rid of a lot of the old sf books that I didn't plan to reread. No matter. After the first movie Pal tried to make the sequel into a movie but couldn't get the money when The Conquest Of Space did so poorly at the box office. He more than makes up for it by producing The War Of The Worlds and producing & directing The Time Machine and 7 Faces Of Dr. Lao. In When Worlds Collide some scientists finds out that a star will hit the earth in 8 months. You'd think we need some better science guys, wouldn't you? I mean if a star was that close you'd think they would have noticed it a couple of weeks sooner or something. The scientists try to get the world to make giant rocket ships to take people to the planet that orbits Bellus. Zyra might mean that humanity will survive.
The world scoffs and most of them will die when Bellus comes a knocking. There's a pretty nice bit with title waves. It puts the titlewave sequence in When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth to shame. Funny how two randomly picked movies will have some odd element that they share. The movie won an oscar for special effects and they are pretty nice. After failing at the UN the scientists in the know, and their rich backers, forge ahead against public ridicule and start building a ship. I like that ship and it's huge launching ramp. They collect food, water, living supplies, critters, people, knowledge and pack that into the ship. The group draws lots to see who will go. There's a good chance for some bits of self sacrifice and selfishness there and the movie jumps right on that. Frank Cady, Mr. Drucker in any show with Hooterville in it, plays John Hoyt's man servant. He's put on by his rich and selfish boss. Hoyt plans to leave him behind and Frank pulls a gun when a chance to go comes up. Hoyt shoots him dead, reminding the group he predicted people might turn against each other when the end came near. As the ship is readied the left behinds get guns and try to get on board. They fail and the lucky ones get to head for Zyra. Hoyt was kept behind by one of the science guys who had a berth. That reduction in weight gives the ship just enough fuel to get to Zyra. They slide to a stop in the snow. Lucky for them the air is breathable. Maybe humanity has a chance to survive.