Viewing your Watchlist and recommended content requires Javascript

  • PG
  • Comedy, Sci-Fi
  • 1996
  • 73 mins

Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie

Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie


A man and his robots watch This Island Earth and pass comment upon the B-picture. That's it


A sizeable cult success in the USA where it's aired on Comedy Central and the Sci-Fi Channel, 'Mystery Science Theater 3000' (aka 'MST3K') has never become established on this side of 'The Pond'. Which is odd given that it's entertaining concept - a space station janitor and his homemade robots are obliged to watch the world's worst movies and we get to eavesdrop on the experience - and wry wit would play well anywhere comedy is appreciated.

'MST3K's 'popularity in America led to its creators, Best Brains Inc, being asked to make a movie. To commemorate this momentous event, the writing staff - having dedicated themselves to taking apart dogs like The Giant Gila Monster, Joe Don Baker vehicle Mitchell and Roger Corman's Teenage Caveman - turned their attention to This Island Earth.

Since Joseph M Newman's picture is considered a classic in some quarters, the Best Brains boys were rather brave to put it under the microscope. Brave, or should that be stupid? Certainly Mike Nelson (pretty much playing himself) and sidekicks Tom Servo (Servo) and Crow T Robot (Beaulieu) score fewer hits here than they did upon disasters such as I Accuse My Parents - a musical about alcoholism and teen murder - and Manos: The Hands Of Fate, the infamous first and last movie from fertilizer salesman-turned-director Harold P Warren.

It's also hard to square this polished picture with the wonderfully ragged TV show that became required late night viewing and continues to perform well on the marathon circuit. Still, if it's not the best advert for the programme, there are enough strong gags here to satisfy the casual viewer. And if you like what you see here, you're going to love the original shows, what with them enjoying a new lease of life on DVD.

Cast & Connections

  • Actor: Jim Mallon, John Brady, Kevin Murphy, Michael J Nelson, Trace Beaulieu
  • Director: Jim Mallon
  • Screen Writer: Paul Chaplin, Michael J Nelson, Kevin Murphy, Mary Jo Pehl, Jim Mallon, Bridget Jones, Trace Beaulieu
  • Producer: Jim Mallon
  • Photographer: Jeff Stonehouse
  • Composer: Billy Barber

In a nutshell

The TV show might be funnier but this is pretty solid introduction to the 'MST3K' phenomenon.

by Richard Luck

Latest from Film4...

  • Film4


    Katell Quillévéré's family-based drama follows Suzanne, a teenage mother who falls for a gangster

  • Film4

    The Purge

    Ethan Hawke stars in James DeMonaco's drama about a sanctioned night where all crime is legal

  • Film4

    Me and You on Film4

    Premiere of Bernardo Bertoluccis drama about a boy and his half-sister who run away together.

  • Film4

    Philadelphia on Film4

    Denzel Washington and Oscar-winning Tom Hanks star in Jonathan Demme's powerful drama.

  • Channel 4 Blog

    BIFA brings 2015 nominated films to cinemas

    BIFA-nominated films including the Film4-backed 45 Years, The Lobster, Macbeth, Amy and Ex Machina will be available in cinemas nationwide from 23 November in a special public screenings event. The

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Film4-backed films receive 41 nominations at the BIFAs

    Film4 has received a total of 41 nominations for the films it has backed at this year¿s British Independent Film Awards (BIFAs), with the nomination lists for the Best British Film and Best Director a

Register with

Personalise your Film4 experience

  • Set film reminders
  • Build your watchlist
  • Get film suggestions

or Register