“Robot Monster” exists simply because someone who was in possession of a diver’s helmet and the better part of a gorilla costume thought to themselves, “I bet I can fashion a movie out of these.”
The end result is no great shakes, but you can’t knock a guy for sheer gumption.
“Robot Monster” is a silly science-fiction thriller about a sadistic moon monster named Ro-Man who comes to Earth, wipes out all of humanity save for a small batch of stock characters and enters a battle of wills with said remaining few.
“Robot Monster” is cheesy (Ro-Man looks like an ape who got his head stuck in a diving bell after one too many drinks), the dialogue is atrocious (says a young boy to Ro-Man: “You look like a pooped-out pinwheel”) and the sentiments are way off the mark (same boy when his small sister is killed: “I wish I had played house with her more often like she wanted to”).
There’s mild fun to be had in the silliness of it all (Ro-Man’s cavern redoubt comes complete with its own bubble machine, which serves the 3-D process well), but the characters are mostly morons and their blasé attitude toward the decimation of all of humanity strikes an unlikely chord.
Then again, perhaps logic is best left at the refreshment counter when watching cheesy schlock like “Robot Monster,” wherein interplanetary simians possess the ability to not only wipe all of us out but also the ability to resurrect prehistoric reptiles to thwart the advances of our heroes.
Rated: Not rated, but contains mild violence
Director: Phil Tucker
Starring: George Nader, Claudia Barrett
★½ (out of ★★★★)