Case Number 21473: Small Claims Court


The Crater Lake Monster
Mill Creek Entertainment // 1977 // 85 Minutes // Rated PG
Mill Creek Entertainment // 1980 // 95 Minutes // Rated R
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // June 3rd, 2011

The Charge

In the 31st century, man finally created a machine with feelings! Also, a beast more frightening than your most terrifying nightmare!

The Case

Feel like watching a couple of old, random sci-fi features that no one asked for? Mill Creek has you covered:

If only this was a serious Star Wars knockoff. Then we could have fun verbally abusing it! Alas, no. Galaxina is a sci-fi parody and an unfunny one at that.

galaxina 1980

Galaxina is a buxom android riding on a space police ship called the Infinity with a bunch of morons. Their mission involves squaring off with a Darth Vader-sounding villain and infiltrating an alien whorehouse.

An example of the sophisticated humor that awaits: the ship's commander is named Captain Cornelius Butt.

The Crater Like Monster
Now this is just padding. A meteor hits Crater Lake, Oregon and somehow hatches an ancient dinosaur egg. From the debris emerges The Crater Lake Monster, which looks like a plesiosaur or something. The beast lumbers its way the through the thick vegetation, eats a couple of rednecks and eventually gets run over by a piece of industrial equipment.

Forget The Crater Lake Monster. There's limited entertainment value there. Actual monster scenes -- shot in stop-motion animation -- are scarce and, frankly, laughable. The majority of the runtime is consumed with endless dialogue among hicks. The lone high point is the finale, where one guy gets chewed up a bit and the monster meets his fate on the business end of a snowplow.

Galaxina has a bit more going for it. The fact that it's intentionally goofy takes the fun out of it. The fact that it isn't funny also takes the fun out of it. As a cultural oddity, the film supplied a mild amount of entertainment. The Star Trek: The Original Series and Star Wars gags are plentiful and have their moments, despite the director's over-reliance on the Vulcan ear prop. Galaxina is a comely lass with a swinging haircut and a jumpsuit that hugs Dorothy Stratten tighter than an anaconda. The alien costumes are cheap, but charming. There is way too much rowing machine usage for the 31st century, however, and one of the pilots wears a neck scarf. Lastly, the plot doesn't make any sense.

Mill Creek's taste in features to imprint on Blu-ray may be questionable, yet they seem to have a handle on the format. Both films look surprisingly good, the biggest shock being the quality of Crater Lake. That 1.85:1, 1080p transfer is crisp and detailed, impressive for a film released in 1977. Galaxina's 2.35:1 (1080i) is less of a performer, but still decent. The space scenes struggle holding those blacks solid, while the alien designs and android voluptuousness benefit more from the resolution. Both films get three different stereo tracks: 2.0 DTS-HD, 2.0 Dolby Digital, and uncompressed PCM. One note: Due to a technical mix-up, one of the tracks on Crater Lake Monster has been replaced by the mix for Galaxina. No extras.

The Verdict

Yeah, guilty. Both of these films are pretty much a waste of time.

Review content copyright © 2011 David Johnson; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2016 HipClick Designs LLC

Scales of Justice, The Crater Lake Monster
Judgment: 55

Perp Profile, The Crater Lake Monster
Video Formats:
* 1.85:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080p)

Audio Formats:
* DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio (English)
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
* PCM 2.0 Stereo (English)

* None

Running Time: 85 Minutes
Release Year: 1977
MPAA Rating: Rated PG

Distinguishing Marks, The Crater Lake Monster
* None

Scales of Justice, Galaxina
Judgment: 60

Perp Profile, Galaxina
Video Formats:
* 2.35:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080i)

Audio Formats:
* DTS HD 2.0 Master Audio (English)
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
* PCM 2.0 Stereo (English)

* None

Running Time: 95 Minutes
Release Year: 1980
MPAA Rating: Rated R

Distinguishing Marks, Galaxina
* None

* IMDb: Galaxina

* IMDb: The Crate Laker Monster