Joe Dante on

Planet of the Vampires

Released 1965
Distributor AIP

About Planet of the Vampires

Gothic grandmaster Mario Bava leaves his corpse-strewn crypts behind and takes off into deep (and scary) outer space. In doing so he simply transforms the spaceships into intergalactic haunted houses (though sans cobwebs). Britain’s Monthly Film Bulletin accurately pegged this lurid Italian-Spanish-US mash-up as “a triumph of mind over matter, or of Bava over a shoestring budget and appalling dubbed dialogue”. It comes replete with the director’s usual stylistic flourishes including the oddly fetishistic space suits worn by the beleaguered astronauts and a super-saturated red and green color scheme that suggests sinister Christmas tree lighting.

About Joe Dante

Joe Dante is a lifelong film buff who turned his obsession into a career.  He got his start cutting trailers for Roger Corman and later directed the hit movie Gremlins, as well as Gremlins 2: The New Batch, for producer Steven Spielberg. His feature films include The Howling, Innerspace, Matinee, Small Soldiers, The ‘burbs and the 3-D thriller titled The Hole, first winner of the 3D Persol Award at the Venice Film Festival. His TV directing work includes:  the HBO film, The Second Civil War, the “Masters of Horrors” titles,  Homecoming and The Screwfly Solution, episodes of Eerie, Indiana , which he was in on the creation of, as well as episodes of CSI: NY, Hawaii 5-0 and Salem. His latest feature, the zom-com Burying the Ex, is currently available on VOD.