Friday, January 20, 2012

Cat-Women Of The Moon (1953)

Cat-Women Of The Moon is directed by Arthur Hilton, produced by Al Zimbalist and Jack Rabin, and stars Sonny Tufts, Victor Jory, Marie Windsor, William Phipps and Douglas Fowley.  The music is composed and directed by Elmer Bernstien.

The film begins with a brief narration about man's exploration of the stars and then quickly cuts to a rocket blasting off and the crew inside evidently suffering from the strain and G-forces of the liftoff (either that or maybe it was a bad meal).  Outside the window we see some stock footage of the view from early spacecraft entering orbit with the earth spinning off into the distance below.  The control center frantically tries to contact the space ship numerous times as it speeds away from the earth and the crew slowly regains the ability to get out of their cots and move about the ship.  The voice from the control center is actually kind of funny at times, I'm not sure if it was intentional or not.  Once everyone is up and about the first thing Helen (Windsor) does is get out a compact and comb to fix her hair.

The crew settles into their 50's style metal frame swivel desk chairs for their long journey ahead.  A brief encounter with a meteor temporarily shakes things up, but a short time later and without much effort the craft lands on the moon,  Helen seems to have some sort of telepathic connection to the female inhabitants on the moon which she uses to guide them to a specific landing area.  The crew exits their ship and after a quick exploration of the area around the landing site they find a cave with life sustaining atmosphere and gravity.  Now with breathable oxygen available the team sheds their space suits and continues onward to discover the buildings of an ancient civilization.  Of course the inhabitants of the city are beautiful women in skintight outfits just as you would find on any other planet.  The cat-women tempt the travelers with food and drink and their female charm in an attempt to seduce the men and gain access to their spaceship. 

Viewers will recognize most of the supporting players from appearances elsewhere.  Douglas Fowley who played "Walters, the engineer" had the role of "Kipp" in the film Battleground (1949), Bill Phipps who played "Doug, the radio operator" had a small part in the The War Of The Worlds (1953), Victor Jory who starred as "Kip, the copilot" appeared in many films, serials, and television shows throughout his long career.  Sonny Tufts who starred as "Commander Grainger, leader of the expedition" starred in numerous films through the 40's and 50's and then did some television spots in the 60's after his film career was tainted by a few off screen incidents in Hollywood.  Marie Windsor who played "Helen, the navigator" did pretty well for herself in the "film noir" genre.  And all the lovely cat-women were played by "The Hollywood Covergirls" - Carol Brewster, Betty Arlen, Suzann Alexander, Roxann Delman, Ellye Marshall and Judy Walsh.

Keeping the production budget to a minimum is pretty obvious judging from the sets and costumes, and the film is pretty standard 50's B-film/science fiction fare.  It's a fun film to watch though as long as you don't have any great expectations.  And it has a pretty standard ending that you can see coming from a mile away.  With a running time of about 64 minutes the film will be over before you know it (for some folks maybe that's a good thing).  Seriously, it's really not that bad, especially if you're a fan of the "50s sci-fi films with hot alien women" genre.  And you'll probably get a few laughs from the dialogue that gets tossed back and forth.

I've definitely seen worse and I do see myself watching Cat-Women Of The Moon again at some point.


  1. I don't think I'd ever heard of this film before reading your post. Those catsuits look pretty cheesy.

  2. Kim -

    Cheesy is pretty much the theme for the whole film. It's fun to watch though, check it out if you get the chance. You'll definitely get a few laughs out of it ...