Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Satire > Spoof > Film > Camp > Horror > Monster > Rifftrax: The Galaxy Invader (DVD), Plan 9 From Outer Space (Blu-ray), Hand-Crafted Artisan Shorts (DVD/all Legend Films)

Rifftrax: The Galaxy Invader (DVD), Plan 9 From Outer Space (Blu-ray), Hand-Crafted Artisan Shorts (DVD/all Legend Films)


Picture: C+/B-/C+     Sound: C+/B-/C+     Extras: C-     Episodes: B+



We’ve covered many episodes of Mystery Science Theater, The Film Crew, and Rifftrax on Fulvue Drive-In over the last 10+ years, and one thing has remained consistent in every incarnation of the “Best Brains” comic team--a wry sense of humor that mixes fun and satire for maximum entertainment.  Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett return in two DVD and one Blu-ray release of Rifftrax.  While the lads have been at it for the better part of two decades, they have not lost their touch!


In The Galaxy Invader, we finally get to see the movie that the crazy, ersatz opening sequences of the now classic MST3K episode Pod People horrified us with so many years ago.  The film centers around a single, rubber-suite alien’s attempt to take over a community of country yokels who collectively possess little to no redeeming qualities whatsoever.  Were it not for Mike, Bill, and Kevin tearing these losers to shreds with quips and barbs, the film would be utterly unwatchable.  The main villain in the film is actually not the alien, but rather, Joe, the paternal head of the primary family affected by the alien’s arrival.  An emaciated, angry drunk who wears torn t-shirts and harangues his 40+ year old son, Joe winds up being more loathsome than a killer from beyond the stars.  Terrible performances, bad lighting, and awful sound give our intrepid trio plenty of ammo for their verbal jabs. 


Hand-Crafted Artisan Shorts delivers ten phenomenally funny “educational” films on topics as diverse as the benefits of walking to school to the value and impact of the paper and pulp industry.  Uncomfortable performances and bizarro animation rein in these pedantic shorts, with most unintentionally funny being the young boy in the paper and pulp short, “Paper and I.”  Yul Brynner he is not!  The seemingly epic walk to school of a pair of siblings in Los Angeles makes one long for the short bus in “Walking to School,” and you can find true dental horror “Tooth Truth with Harv and Marv.”  If you’re looking for just a quick-hit from the Rifftrax guys, just pop this disc in and watch one or two of these shorts.  Preferably not while operating heavy machinery. 


The best of this trio comes to us all the way from a live stage in Nashville, TN, and arrives at the hands of no less famous a film than the classically bad Plan 9 From Outer Space.  If MST3K married the Rocky Horror Picture Show, you might get something akin to this episode of Rifftrax.  Live riffing, musical performances, and general hilarity ensue when Mike, Bill, and Kevin take on Plan 9 from a theater in Nashville. The behind the scenes slideshow will give fans a peek into what goes into a live show like this one, and the heightened sound and picture quality of the Blu-ray format provides a nice respite from the usual poor product the boys are forced to work with--see Galaxy Invader for a textbook example of this. 


If you like Mike Nelson and crew, and you loved MST3K in the 1990s, you’ll find these episodes of Rifftrax a lot like visiting an old friend from college.  One that you still like.  While it’s not as good as those actual days when you were 22, it will give you moments that recapture the essence of what it was like to be that young and that hopeful, and sometimes that has to be enough.



-   Scott Pyle


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com