DIRECTED BY: Norman J. Warren
WRITTEN BY: Nick & Gloria Maley
PEW PEW: Loads of gruesome deaths and some suspense, but it’s not edge-of-the-seat.
CAT FOOD: Inseminoid is a vehicle for its gruesome kill scenes with no real social commentary or dramatic depth of any kind.
Whenever a film like Alien (which uses a minimum amount of creature and environment to achieve a maximum amount of horror and entertainment) is released, we end up buried up to our eyeballs in cheap rip-offs made by people who honestly believe they can do the same by designing a creature and murdering people for a fraction of the cost. When it comes to Alien clones, I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. Inseminoid is the bad, but the mildly decent side of bad.
Very much like Alien, but with a no-nonsense approach to getting to the gnarly bits, Inseminoid finds our crew of space men and women investigating the ruins of an alien civilisation on a distant planet. After a crew member goes mad from exposure to alien crystals, a pair are attacked by a creature of some kind while checking out the accident site. The dude is quickly dispatched but the girl is raped by the creature (which looks like Seth Brundle ended up turning into a giant dong instead of a fly) and, well, inseminated.
What follows is what pisses me off the most about a lot of cheap creature movies. Usually the filmmakers put together a decent, if cheesy-looking, monster, only to have the thing mind control the main characters into doing the killing for it. It’s a slick way to ensure your creature isn’t made to look ridiculous by having to move around a lot (thus revealing its rubbery limitations), but it also happens to be a surefire route to Boringville. This is why I prefer Corman when it comes to low-end B movies: the man makes the decent, cheesy-looking monster, and runs with it — allowing the beast, in all its rubbery glory, to run amok no matter how bad it looks.
Inseminoid of course chose the safe route, but it’s not really a boring picture by any means. The suspense is quite effective, if slightly routine-feeling, and the cast of characters meet oodles of gruesome fates — one girl tries to hack her own foot off with a mechanical saw for fuck sake! I just feel that it might have been far more enjoyable had the creature done the killing instead of some mad woman carrying its bug-eyed, penis-headed wienerspawn.
Of note is the picture’s score, composed by John Scott, which is enjoyable in a retro cheese kind of way. It does, however, become unserviceable to the film in scenes where it’s impossible for it to fit. I also like the way Inseminoid was shot. There are some really cool techniques employed that make the film’s look seem a little like a grindhouse Kubrick. And there are, like in any great exploitation sci-fi, boobies to be beheld.
Sandy, the girl who was given the D by a giant D, does eventually give birth to twin carnivorous cocks that finish off the rest of the crew with toothless, Muppet maws.
It’s not the best sci-fi exploitation film out there by any means, but I have to award Inseminoid with a passing grade for its interesting visuals, gnarly kill scenes, and a somewhat charming sense that the film really did try to be something unique.