director John Gilling
I just did something that I had literally never done before: watched a movie streaming on my computer. Radical, huh?
I’m the first to admit that I’m a snob or elitist about how I like to watch movies. First best scenario would be the big screen, in a cinema. Second, settling at home with a reasonable screen, in my case an older, once top of the line old tube television. If the film isn’t in letterbox format, without interruptions, I’ll only suffer it in a pinch. I’ve disdained watching films on airplanes for decades now.
It so happens that Hulu Plus has a handful of films that (even with a paid account) you can only watch on a computer. Sure, if I had a more modern television, I’m sure that I could still get the image to show up on a bigger screen, but I don’t. So, for me, there is this small subset of movies that I want to see that I cannot see if I don’t watch them streaming on my computer.
And it took me this wild moment (quite the life I lead, eh?) that I decided to finally watch Night Caller from Outer Space, a British sci-fi thriller from 1965 on my laptop.
It’s another solid genre film from a country less associated with the genre than perhaps they should be. British horror and science fiction, the non-Hammer films anyways, offer quite a broad gamut of thrills and adventure and a decidedly different approach than the Americans.
In Night Caller, which stars American John Saxon, an object falls from space, what seems like some massive asteroid or something but turns out to be this odd silicon-based orb that has unusual properties, like mucking with all radio waves and emitting potent forms of radiation. Oh, yes, and transmitting to Earth a creature from a moon of Jupiter, here to abduct our women, especially women you subscribe to “Bikini Girl” magazine.
In Night Caller, it’s the little things that make the film so interesting. A great scene with the mother and father of one of the abducted girls is played for comic humor in the dialog and odd mannerisms of the couple. And then there’s Aubrey Morris as the sleazy and suggestive bookstore operator in a fantastic character role.
Okay, the ending is a little bit of a let-down, a little anti-climax, but in the meantime several characters that seem like they are the center of the movie are cut down in their primes.
Oh yeah, and that croony ballad, “The Night Caller” sung by Mark Richardson. Weird, odd, cool.