Santa Claus Conquers The Martians

Year Of Production: 1964
Running Time: 81 Minutes
DVD Released By: Laserlight DVD
Directed By: Nicholas Webster
Writing Credits: Paul L. Jacobson (story), Glenville Mareth
Filming Location: Long Island, New York

Starring: John Call, Leonard Hicks, Vincent Beck, Bill McCutcheon, Victor Stiles, Donna Conforti, Chris Month, Pia Zadora, Leila Martin

Tagline: Blast off for Mars... with Santa and a pair of Earth kids!

Alternate Titles:
Santa Claus Defeats the Aliens (1964) (video title)

Interesting Bits of Trivia:
The director, Nicholas Webster, also directed several TV shows including The Waltons, Get Smart, and several episodes of Mannix.




Cast Of Characters
Santa Claus: It's Santa Claus. I mean, just look at him. It's Santa Claus. What more do you want from me. If you don't know who Santa Claus is, then I'm sure there's a turnip truck out there somewhere that's missing a rider.

Mrs. Claus: This is Santa's ol' lady. What a nag she is. I don't think her mouth ever stops moving while she on camera. When the aliens froze her, and things suddenly got all quiet, Santa probably thought he just went deaf or something.

Kimar: He's the leader of the Martian people and an all around decent guy. I mean, sure he kidnapped Santa, but Santa didn't seem to mind, and he was doing it to make the children of Mars happy. Judging by how they dress on Mars, I think they'd have all been a lot better off if they had kidnapped a fashion consultant instead.

Momar: She's Kimar's wife and doesn't really have much of a part in this movie. She makes Santa a new suit, feeds the kids their food pills, and well...that's pretty much it. She's about as exciting as a loaf of bread.

Dropo: Doesn't Dropo sound like a clown name? It would be appropriate if it was in this case since that's pretty much what Dropo is. I mean, when a guy hasn't been sleeping because he forgot how, then how much can you really expect from him? He's got a good heart though and works really hard to become Mars' very own Dropo Claus. See here in this screenshot, he's even got the outfit on. Isn't he coooooool?

Voldar: Man what a bitch this guy is. You ain't never in your life seen anyone who was more of a sourpuss than this guy. He don't like nothin' and he does everything he can to keep Christmas from coming to Mars. You know, I just realized that he and the Grinch have a lot in common. They're both green and they're both pissy. All Voldar needs now is a little dog and he's all set.

Chochem: This is the wise old creepy guy who lives out in the woods. He's eight hundred years old, so he probably knows what he's talking about. I wonder why they made him live out in the woods though? Must have been that little flatulence problem of his. Either that, or the whole Cousin It look was just creepin' people out.

Billy Foster: He's the Earth kid who led the Martians to Santa Claus. If it wasn't for him, they would have probably just grabbed one of the street Santas and went off on their merry way. Thanks Billy. Thanks for ruining Christmas for everyone and getting Santa kidnapped and getting his wife and a couple of his elves frozen.

Betty Foster: She's Billy's little sister. She doesn't do much except get upset and complain. But then again I guess that's what little sisters are for.

Bomar: This kid has some serious horse teeth. I hope they took the money they made from this film and got this kid to a good orthodontist. Anyway, Bomar is one of Kimar's kids. He doesn't have a whole lot of personality, but at least he doesn't walk around looking like he's scared to death every time he's on camera.

Girmar: This is Kimar's other kid. She's got no personality and basically walks around with this really bizarre look on her face most of the time. There is this one part of the movie though where she's actually laughing with Santa. It made me wish that she'd get the blank look back again. Very bizarre...




The Plot
Martian children are depressed. Why? Well it's because they've been watching Earth tv and realized that they don't have any toys or Santa Claus or Christmas on Mars. Isn't that sad? Kimar, who is the leader of the Martian people, decides that desperate times call for desperate measures and he formulates a plan to kidnap Santa Claus and bring him to Mars so that he can make the Martian children happy again. Unfortunately, his chief rival, Voldar, has other plans, and does everything he can to sabotage Kimar's plan of bringing Christmas to the red planet. Can Kimar and Santa Claus and the kids overcome the mean spirited Voldar? Will there be Christmas on Mars this year? Will Santa be able to get home in time for Christmas back on Earth? The answers to all these questions and more lie ahead...



What The Hell???
1. As the movie opens, we're treated to some festive opening credits with a very sixties sounding children's song about Santa Claus playing in the background. I can tell already that the company that released this did nothing to clean up the final master of this film because there's artifacts all over the place. I believe I've read though that there aren't really any overly great prints of this film still in existence though, so maybe they figured they'd just take the best print they could get and not bother with cleaning it up. I don't know. There's a few jumps in the sound during this opening sequence as well. I just hope it's not too bad during the movie because I need to get screenshots and stuff.

2. So the movie opens with a couple of martian kids watching a news report from Earth on channel KIDTV. Isn't that too many call letters? Anyway, they're doing a news report live from Santa's workshop at the North Pole. They got this reporter named Andy Henderson up at the North Pole. He looks like he's freezing his pole off to be perfectly honest. He's like covered in icicles and he's standing outside the workshop instead of inside where he should be. He's wearing a fur coat and a fur hat and looks like some kind of a North Pole pimp. Anyway, you'll never guess who's playing this part. I realized it as soon as I heard the voice. It's Ned Wertimer!!! I can hear you all now saying, "Who the hell is Ned Wertimer?" Well I won't keep you in suspense because I want to get on with this review. Ned Wertimer is the guy who played Ralph the doorman on the television show, The Jeffersons. Isn't that exciting?!?!? Anyway, he makes a lot of lame jokes about how cold it is before finally going into the workshop.

3. Andy walks into the workshop where there's a bunch of what are supposed to be elves hard at work on this years toys trying to get them all done for christmas. Now when I say they're supposed to be elves, what I mean is that they don't really look like elves. Actually, what they look like is a bunch of underpants gnomes. You fans of South Park will know what I'm talking about. So Andy talks to one of the elves and get's totally ignored. Finally he walks over and introduces Santa who tells Andy that he's caught him at a very busy time. Andy asks him if there's any truth to the rumor that he'll be using a rocket sled this year. Santa says that he's going out the old fashioned way, with his reindeer. Then he starts listing them off and can't remember all of their names and screws up half of them. I didn't know Nixon was one of Santa's reindeer! So just about then Santa's wife comes along and starts nagging him about having to get the hobby horses painted, and then when she finds out she's on television, she gets all nice and starts fixing her hair and what not. She looks a lot like Aunt Bea from The Andy Griffith Show.

4. As Mrs. Claus leaves, Santa's all laughing. Now, I personally thought Santa was supposed to laugh like ho ho ho, but apparently the actor playing Santa in this movie, John Call, had other ideas. Now, I don't really know how to describe the way he laughs. It's almost like the laugh you would hear from a serial killer as he was claiming another victim in a very nasty way. It's just creepy the way he laughs. No wonder kids scream when you put them on Santa's lap.

5. Now Santa's giving Andy a tour of the workshop so he can see all the new toys they've been working on. Andy picks up this one doll off the table that the elf Winky made. It's a doll of a martian and Andy says that if there are really people on Mars, that they have someone like Santa up there too. Now oddly enough, and I know you'd never expect this, but the next scene we go to is in a martian's house. There's this dude in a green superman lookin' outfit, cape and all, with a metal helmet with two antennae and a tube sticking out of it that circles around to the back. He looks like some kind of a disco nightmare from the seventies. He's yelling at some other dude named Dropo who seems to be sleeping on the floor. Kinda reminds me of when the doctor was yelling at Greg who was also sleeping on the floor in Doctor Gore. Anyway, Dropo won't get up, so Mr. Disco Nightmare grabs this wand and waves it over him and tells him to get up. It makes a weird sound and finally Dropo starts giggling and tells him to turn off the tickle wand. Now a tickle wand, who'd have thought of that? So the guy turns off the wand and reaches down and pulls out Dropo's antennae so they're fully extended as he keeps telling him to get up. Man this is bizarre.

6. So Dropo finally gets up and we find out that this guy who woke him up is Chief Kimar. Kimar calls him the laziest man on Mars and asks him why he's sleeping during working hours. Dropo says, "I wasn't sleeping chief. It's just that I haven't been able to sleep these past few nights. I forgot how. So I was just practicing." That's priceless isn't it? Anyway, he tells Kimar that the lady of the house is out buying more food pills and that his kids Girmar and Bomar are in their room watching the tv broadcasts from the Earth again. Kimar says he wished they wouldn't do that because it only confuses them, and then he goes into their room and sits down behind them. Santa is showing Andy another toy on the tv, and the kids are wondering what a doll is and what tender loving care is. Kimar tells them to go to sleep, so they hop up on these round discs that look hard as a rock and he has the machine above them sprinkle some kind of dust on them that puts them to sleep. Jeez, where can I get some of that dust? I could throw it on my wife when she's bitching at me and then sneak out for a while until she wakes up and cools off.

7. Back out to Dropo now. Not sure if he's supposed to be a butler or what. I guess I'll find out in due course of time. He's twiddling this knob and the lady of the house comes back home. Her name is Momar. Are you seeing a pattern with the names in this movie? I wonder where the hell Dropo got his name. Judging by the obvious lack of intelligence, I'd say he got his name because he was dropped on his head as a child. Many times...

8. So Momar, Kimar's wife, starts telling him about the food pills she got and how she hopes the kids like them. He starts telling her about how depressed they are and that he had to use the sleep spray on them to get them to sleep again tonight. She says that it's the same with children all over and that as leader of the Martian people, it's his job to do something about it. He tries to think of something, and Momar suggests that he go to the forest to talk to Chochem the Ancient One. Ohhhhh...sounds creepy don't it?

9. So Kimar and all the other council elders go to Chochem's place. Apparently Chochem is eight hundred years old. One of the council chiefs , Voldar, is being a total bitch about the whole thing. So they call to Chochem and he appears. Looks like one of Dr. Lao's characters in 7 Faces of Dr. Lao. Anyway, Kimar starts telling him that their children won't eat and won't sleep and only seem to be interested in watching meaningless Earth programs on the video. Uh, sounds like typical kids to me. I don't know what they're so worried about. So Chochem asks Kimar what time of the year it is. Kimar tells him that it's Septober. Isn't that quaint? Chochem says that he wants to know what time of the year it is on Earth. He realizes that it's mid December on Earth, and then he goes into this big weepy story about what Christmas is like on Earth. Voldar is still being a bitch, but Kimar is interested in what he has to say. Chochem says that the children of Mars have not been allowed to be children because from the time they're born, they have the mechanical learning machines put on their heads and they haven't been allowed to be children. They've never learned to have fun and now they're rebelling. He says that they need to be allowed to be children, and that they need a Santa Claus on Mars. Now why would Santa Claus want to hang out with a bunch of Martian kids? I mean, he already has to have spoiled kids sitting on his lap all day. Why the hell would he want a whole new batch of moldy green kids on his lap? You can get diseases and stuff from things like that. Anyway, after he says all that, he looks like he's having a stroke and then he disappears in a cloud of smoke.

10. Voldar is still being a total bitch. He's totally against this whole Santa thing, but Kimar says that Earth has had Santa Claus long enough, and that desperate times call for desperate measures. Now, I wonder if it would have killed one of them to dress up like Santa? I'm also wondering how the hell they're planning on finding him. I mean jeez, during Christmas time there's more Santas walking around than there are Saddam Hussein look-alikes walking around Iraq. Good luck finding him in all that. Anyway, they all hop in a spaceship and head off for Earth.
11. Hahahah! That's exactly what's happening. They're looking at the Earth through their scopes and talking about how primitive the cities look and what not, when suddenly, they spot Santa! Then they spot another one! Then they spot hundreds more of them! Woohoo! They don't understand why there are so many of them, but Kimar says they only need one. So I'm wondering at this point how they ever managed to get the right one. They should have just taken that one on the corner. No, not that one. The one over there. The one with the hooker and the bottle of cheap booze. It's party Santa!

12. So by this time, our military has spotted them, and they're raising the missiles out of the silos. Now, what do you think happens at this crucial moment? Do the Earthlings blow the Martians out of the sky? Do the Martians destroy entire cities in their quest for jolly ol' Saint Nick? Does Voldar fart in the small, enclosed control room and wave it at everyone? No! Basically, what happens next is that they flip open the lid on their radar box and find Dropo inside. He stowed away on the ship because he had never seen the Earth before. So they pull him out of there and Kimar yells at him and tells him to get down below. Dropo freaks out and bumps a bunch of levers and knocks the ship all kittywumpas for a few seconds before he finally gets the hell out of the control room. God, who the hell named this guy Dropo? They should have named him Gilligan!

13. So the Martians finally decide to just land already. It's about freakin' time too. After a long landing procedure and a news report about how they just disappeared off the military's radar, we get to see stock footage of the military scrambling into action and jets taking off and what not. I like stock footage because you can fast forward through it without really missing anything.

14. So the Martians are landing now, and we cut to Billy and Betty Foster. Billy's sitting on the ground leaning up against a tree and Betty's laying on her stomach in front of him and they're listening to the radio and talking. Betty asks Billy what Martians look like. He says he doesn't know because no one's ever seen one. She says she doesn't believe there's any Martians. He asks her what she'd do if a Martian walked right up behind her. She says she'd scream. Then she screams. Billy tells her to be quiet because he's trying to sleep, but then the Martians come running up, stick guns in their faces, and tell them not to move. Kimar tells them not to be frightened, and that they have children just like them back on Mars. Now, I don't know about any of you, but if I was about six or seven years old and these three big green dudes dressed up like Superman's nightmare came up out of nowhere and pointed some gnarly looking guns at me, I'd probably need a clean pair of underwear...and a clean pair of shoes as well. Now I'm also going to make two observations at this point. The first observation is that Voldar's gun looks like it has the rubber end of a plunger attached to the end of it with the inner cone pulled out. The second observation is that it's very cold there. It's also windy which means that there's a wind chill factor effect going on. So would someone please tell me why the hell Betty is all bundled up from the waist up, but from the waist down, she's wearing a very short little mini skirt and tights! I mean jeez, buy this kid some pants already! It's cold outside!

15. So the Martians tell them that they're looking for Santa Claus. Billy tells them that there's only one Santa Claus, but they get confused and say that they've seen so many of them. Billy explains that they're all just Santa's helpers and that the real Santa Claus lives in his workshop up at the North Pole. Yeah good goin' Billy. Sell out the old guy why don't ya? See if you get any presents next Christmas. So anyway, Kimar is happy that they know where Santa is now, and he starts to leave. Voldar grabs the kids and Kimar yells at him to let them go. Voldar says that they'll just run off and tell the authorities about them, and the other Martian guy concurs so Kimar finally agrees to let Voldar bring them along to the North Pole. Where the hell are these kids' parents? How about a little parental supervision here folks?

16. So off they go and we see the tv news announcer again talking about how the military is still looking for the space ship. After we get treated to a little more stock footage of a military aircraft doing a mid air re-fuel, we find ourselves back on the space ship where Dropo is showing Betty and Billy around the control room and telling them that they aren't supposed to be in there and that Kimar will be really mad if he finds out. You know those machines they were talking about earlier that they put on the kids' heads when they were tiny so it could educate them and they could bypass the child stage completely? Well I think Dropo's helmet was defective. God what a dunce. Man he's showing them like everything and telling them how it all works. I hope they don't trust this guy with any military secrets or anything. Anyway, all the Martians come up to the control room and Dropo has the kids hide in that radar box. The rest of the crew come into the control room and after a close call with Voldar almost finding the kids in the box, one of the other Martians announces that they've finally spotted Santa's workshop. So they focus all their attention on that, and then after they finally land, they all leave the control room and the kids come out of the box. The kids overheard everything about their plan to kidnap Santa and to take them all to Mars and what not. Now, here at this point Billy finally shows some intelligence. He pulls a bunch of wires and what not out of the equipment in the radar box and then tells Betty that if they try to kidnap them and Santa now, they're going to have the entire US Space Fleet after them. He even remembers to pull the lid back down on the box. He's gettin' smarter by the minute.

17. Billy and Betty climb down the ladder and get out of the Space Ship before any of the Martians do. Now doesn't it seem odd that an alien race as supposedly advanced as these people still have to climb out of their space ships down a ladder? Anyway, so the kids take off lookin' for Santa to warn him, and eventually the rest of the Martians come piling out of the ship like midgets out of a clown car. Everyone that is except for Voldar. Voldar comes out and tells them that the kids have escaped and they've gone off to warn Santa. The Martians take off to look for the kids while Kimar stays behind and calls Torg out of the space ship. I think Torg is their robot by the sounds of how Kimar is calling him.

18. The kids stop for a rest, but they don't get to rest long before they spot Voldar on their trail. They run into this little ice cave real quick to hide. Voldar spots their footprints and kneels down to look in the small ice cave. Just as he's about to spot the kids though, we hear this growling sound. Voldar looks around over his shoulder and then takes off runnin' like a little bitch. IRUN FOR YOUR LIFE!!! IT'S A GUY IN A REALLY STUPID LOOKING POLAR BEAR SUIT!!! RUN AWAY!!! Well actually, the polar bear suit was quite funny. Unfortunately we only get to see the polar bear for a few seconds. I'm surprised they didn't have a stock footage polar bear chase Voldar away to be perfectly honest.
19. The kids come out of the cave once Voldar is gone, but they can't figure out why he left. At least, they didn't figure it out until the polar bear chased them back into the cave. It reached in and tried to get them, but it couldn't reach so it left. So the kids come back out of the cave again now that the polar bear is gone, and Betty starts complaining about how she's cold. Well gee little miss skirt and tights at the North Pole. Are you cold? Really? Well maybe you'll dress a little warmer next time you go out on a cold day. Then she starts saying how she wished it wasn't snowing, and Billy tells her that it's the best thing that could have happened to them because it will cover their tracks and make it harder for the Martians to find them. Now how about a little continuity here folks. First Billy's Mr. Blabbermouth about Santa and rambles on like an idiot, but ever since then, he's been like totally smart. For Santa's sake, I hope he stays this way. He owes it to Santa after leading the Martians right to him. Anyway, he does his best to calm his sister down, and then they get up and start looking for Santa's workshop. They spot the robot Torg and freeze like a couple of deer caught in the headlights. Torg grabs them, and just then Voldar comes rushing up. He starts yelling at Torg to crush the children, but Torg just stands there holding them. Kimar comes running up at this point and tells Voldar that he knew he'd try something like this, so he programmed Torg to obey only his commands. After chastising the kids, he has one of the other Martians take them back to the ship, while he and Torg head off for Santa's Workshop. Who the hell knew it would be so much trouble just to kidnap one rickety old fat man in a red suit?
20. The Martians finally make it to Santa's place, and they send Torg in to bust down the door and kidnap Santa. So he busts in the door and Santa treats him like a toy, so the robot actually becomes a toy and just stops doing pretty much everything. The Martians come busting in at that point and Voldar pops two of the elves with his plunger gun. They freeze and Kimar tells him not to worry because it's harmless and the effects will wear off after a short time. Now at this point, Santa doesn't seem even the least bit phased by the fact that there's a giant robot and aliens in his workshop. I mean, working around elves all day, I guess you'd become a little desensitized after a while, but jeez! Just then Mrs. Claus comes in and starts nagging about how they have so much to do and complaining about how everyone's just standing around. What a nag! I'm surprised we don't have Christmas more often just so Santa can get out of the house once in a while to regain his sanity. Oh that's not cool. They just popped Mrs. Claus with the freeze ray pop gun thingy. Oh wait...yeah it is cool. At least now she's quiet for once.

21. Hahahahah!!! Santa is apologizing to his wife now saying how he had nothing whatsoever to do with any of this. Then he goes on to say that he can't recall a time where she was ever this quiet for this long. Oh man, that was hilarious. The Martians order Torg to take Santa, but he just stands there being all useless. They decide to leave Torg there since he's nothing more than a big toy now, and they take Santa out with them to their space ship.

22. So we get to see the news announcer again now, and he's saying how Mrs. Claus has positively identified Santa's kidnappers as the Martians. He goes on to say how the lights will be burning all night at the U.N. as the nations of the world plan out a course of action. Well I guess by the time the U.N. inspectors are done cruisin' around Mars lookin' for Santa and not finding him because Kimar has him hidden in the basement of his palace, we can pretty much figure on never seeing Christmas again. Maybe they should put Dropo in charge of the U.N.. I think he'd be about the smartest one there. Anyway, they go on to interview this scientist with a really bad German accent who says that they're sending their finest astronauts up to retrieve Santa Claus from the clutches of the Martians. The Martians don't realize that they're being followed because of what Billy did to their radar box. They still don't know what the kids did to the equipment. I would think that the lack of lights or activity on the panel would have been their first clue.

23. Santa is making everyone on board happy except for Voldar who's still being a little bitch. He's taken a particular liking to Dropo. Gee I wonder why? Anyway, the Martians just discovered that they're bring followed by an Earth ship. Voldar checks the radar shield box and discovers that Billy has torn out a lot of the wires. He gets all ticked off and goes after Billy. Kimar lets him go and tells one of the others to make repairs on the box while he takes evasive action. So we go down to the cell now where Santa and the kids are being held. He's being all nice to Santa and the kids. He offers to take them on a tour of the ship. They basically tell him he's full of crap and they don't believe him, but Santa tells them that that's not the Christmas spirit. So they go ahead and go on the tour with Voldar. Where does he take them first? Give ya three guesses. Nope, try again. Nope, not there either. Nope. God you're not very good at this are you? Ok I'll tell you. He took them to the airlock. So he asks them if they know what this room is, and Billy goes into this long oratory about how it's an airlock and all about how it works. Man he's gettin' smarter by the minute, ain't he? Voldar tells him that he's very smart and Santa asks him where the switch is to open it. He tells them that the switch is in the control room, and that once it's activated, the doors will open in sixty seconds. There's a countdown clock in the airlock too. So Voldar gets back up to the control room and flips the switch. Somehow though, since this movie is 81 minutes long and so far I'm only at 49 minutes, I can't see Santa and the kids floating around in space just yet. Somehow I think they're going to all get up that air pipe in the airlock and get away.
24. Kimar comes into the control room right after the airlock doors open and he asks Voldar what's going on and who's in the airlock. Voldar says that no one's in there now and that they're floating around in space. Dropo comes in just then and tells Kimar that Santa and the children are missing. Kimar attacks Voldar and they start fighting. I can't tell you how funny it is watching two guys who look like Village People rejects beat the snot out of each other. Just as Kimar gets the upper hand and starts whackin' Voldar's head up and down on the control panel, Santa and the kids come walkin' in. Now, Kimar and Voldar are both shocked, and Santa tells them that when Voldar accidentally locked them in the airlock and then came up to the control room and accidentally threw the airlock switch, that he knew that if they didn't get out of there, that it would be the end of them. So they escaped up the vent pipe. Kimar is happy to see them but Voldar looks like he's going to pass out from the snot beating he just took. In fact, he does. So they all have a good laugh and continue along their way.
25. They just landed on Mars, and Kimar ordered the other two crewmen, Hargo and Rigna, to go down to the brig and get Voldar so that he could be put on trial right away. So Hargo and Rigna head on down there and walk into the cell singing Jingle Bells and laughing and basically ripping on Voldar who's tied up and gagged on the bed. But wait a minute kiddies! That's not Voldar tied up on the bed. It's Dropo! Apparently, he was handing Voldar food pills through the bars and Voldar grabbed him and drug him into the brig, tied him up and then got away. Now my big question here is, if Voldar was tied up and gagged in the first place, then how the hell was he able to do that to Dropo and get away? I mean, Voldar would have had to have been bound and gagged because when the Hargo and Rigna saw Dropo, they didn't seem to think there was anything unusual about seeing a guy laying on the bed with his hands tied and a gag in his mouth. My other question is, if Voldar was bound and gagged, how the hell did Dropo expect him to be able to eat food pills anyway? Anyway, they report to Kimar that Voldar has escaped, and Voldar tells them to put a constant guard on Santa and the Earth children because Voldar will be back.
26. Now we go to Kimar's house, where Momar is waiting for them to get back home. Kimar comes in and greets her and then Dropo comes in with the Earth children. She greets each of them with a gentle head butt and then Santa comes walking in. She says that she hopes he can make the children on Mars happy, and he says that he'll try. Kimar asks her how their own kids are doing and she tells him that they're the same. Santa says that he'll go say hi to them right now and see what he can do about that. He takes Billy and Betty and they all head off to the kids' room. The kids are laying on their hard as a rock lookin' beds with those learning helmets on their heads. The helmet is attached to some kind of a recorder that's playing back all these mathematical calculations to them about how to calculate orbits and distances between planets and what not. Bomar is laying there like he's asleep. I don't blame him. That's some pretty dry stuff he's listening to. Anyway, Kimar comes walking in, and after greeting his children with head butts just like his wife greeted the Earth children. No wonder these people wear helmets. Billy and Betty come in now and Kimar introduces them to his kids, Bomar and Girmar. Bomar asks Billy how old he is. Billy says he's ten and that his sister is eight. Now seriously here folks, they don't look that old. Bomar says that he and his sister are the same ages. Now they actually do look that old. So Santa Claus walks in that this point, and they both look at him like a big turd just walked through the door. Girmar, who's played by Pia Zadora, has this constant deer in the headlights look on her face. I mean, I know this was her first movie, but she couldn't have had stage fright that bad. So Santa Claus starts laughing like a serial killer again, and then the kids all start up laughing. The whole scene is pretty creepy.
27. Out in a cave somewhere, we find Voldar, fuming over what's happened to him and very angry that he's had to resort to hiding in some cave like a spotted worm. He's got some lackey with him that doesn't seem a whole lot more intelligent than Dropo. Just then, another lackey of his named Shim shows up at the cave. The first lackey has to turn off this invisible nuclear curtain before he comes in. See, I guess there's a little child inside every Martian that likes to play make believe. Even if they don't want to admit it. Anyway, Shim comes in and tells Voldar that Kimar has built Santa a mechanized workshop where toys are rolling off the assembly lines faster than you can imagine, and that at this rate, Mars is going to be flooded with toys. Then he gets this dopey look on his face and starts talking about how they had the cutest toy there. It's a round metal coil and it walks down stairs all by itself. Gee, I wonder what that could be? Well, he wasn't talking about it for very long, because Voldar bitch slaps the taste right out of his mouth. He says that soon, all of Mars will be blithering idiots if this continues. So he grabs his two henchmen in a huddle formation and tells them that the only way to stop this is to discredit them. He says that the workshop will close at ten and then the guards will be at Kimar's house guarding Santa Claus. So here's what they're gonna do... Now, how the hell does he know the workshop is gonna be closing at ten? He didn't even know there was a workshop until Shim told him just now.
28. We go back to the workshop now where all four kids are hard at work. Dropo comes walking bringing a bunch of letters to Santa and says there's hundreds of thousands of them. Now this machine they got making toys is pretty slick. Here's how the process is going. Betty reads the letters and tells Santa what the kids want. Santa has this control panel in front of him with a bunch of switches with a light over each switch. So Betty tells him that the kid who wrote this letter wants two dolls. Santa flips the doll switch back and forth twice, and two dolls come out of the doll chute and drop onto the conveyor belt. You get the idea. The next letter Becky reads, she tells him that the kid wants three baseball bats. So Santa hits the switch and the three baseball bats come out and drop onto the conveyor belt. The funny part is, he messed up and hit the switch four times, but only three bats came out. You could see when he did it too that he knew he did it one too many times, but they went on with the shot anyway, probably figuring that no one would notice. Anyway, he's gettin' kinda depressed because he's the great toy maker, and here he is, relegated to pushing buttons. So they all close up shop, and as they're leaving, Santa grabs this coat that Momar made for him. Dropo asks if he can try it on, but Santa just laughs and says, "Don't be silly Dropo. This would never fit you. Why, you'd have to fatten up first." And they all had a good laugh.
29. So they come home and Santa complains about his finger hurting because he's been pushing buttons all day. He heads off to bed, and then the Martian kids go off to watch some Earth program, but Betty and Billy don't seem too happy. In fact, they seem downright depressed. Kimar is concerned about them, but the kids just keep telling them that they want to go to bed. Finally Kimar gives up and lets them go to bed. He's really concerned about them, which is actually genuinely touching. After they walk away, Momar makes the observation that they're homesick and that they have to send the kids back home. Kimar says that it's impossible. I don't know why it would be at this point, since they got Santa and all. They don't need to worry about the kids anymore.

30. Now we go to Dropo who's in his room trying on a Santa outfit. He realizes that he's gonna have to get fatter to fit into it, so he starts downin' food pills. He realizes that that's not gonna work fast enough, so he grabs some pillows and stuffs himself and gets the beard and the hat on and viola! Dropo Claus! He's happy with himself how so he says that his finger don't hurt so he's gonna go back to the workshop and make some more toys. Little does our hero know, that at this very moment, Voldar and his two henchmen are sneaking into the workshop with the intention of sabotaging the equipment. It's funny watching the three of them sneak in there too because they're all trying to be quiet, but it ends up looking more like a Three Stooges slapstick bit. Speaking of the Three Stooges, Dropo comes in just as they finish sabotaging the machinery. He's doing this dance that kinda looks like the Curly shuffle and he's singing Jingle Bells. The three baddies think he's Santa and realize that he's alone, so they capture him and take him back to the cave. Now tell me something here. Voldar has seen Santa up close. Even from a distance, Dropo doesn't look anything like Santa. And since when does Santa wear a helmet with antennae and external plumbing attached to it? Yet for some strange reason, Voldar thinks they captured Santa. What the hell is going on here? Are these people just all morons or what? I mean, he's got green skin for christ's sake! Since when does Santa have green skin??? Anyway, Dropo is keeping the outfit on and not telling them that he's not the real Santa.

31. The next morning, they can't find Dropo. Santa comes out and says he can't find his extra Santa suit either. He says that if they find his suit, they'll find Dropo as well. So Santa and the kids go to the workshop, and start making toys. The toys are all coming out all mixed up. Like, there's a doll with a teddy bear head, and a teddy bear with a doll's head. It's actually a little creepy. Anyway, They figure out something deeper is wrong, and Santa has Bomar call his father. Now we go back to the Voldar's cave. Voldar and one of his henchmen are going to the enemy camp thinking that they're just gonna go walking in because they have Santa held captive. So they go back to the workshop and Kimar stops them. He shows them that they don't have the real Santa and takes them both prisoner. Meanwhile, back at the cave, Dropo turned off the nuclear curtain and ran away. Shim can't figure out what happened, but I mean duh! You got this guy sitting right there next to the nuclear curtain machine, you don't even tie him up, and then you turn your back on him. Gimme a freakin' break here!
32. Back with Kimar, Voldar and his henchman cold cock Kimar in the storeroom and plot to go grab Santa. Billy overhears them and let's Santa know what's going on, so Santa makes a few plans of his own. Voldar comes out of the storeroom and confront's Santa, who at this point is just sitting there blowing bubbles out of his pipe. Just then, Voldar is attacked by all the kids smackin him with toys and there's toys and bubbles everywhere and the whole scene is just a confusing mess. Voldar is so totally lame, that he can't even fight off four kids with a bunch of toys, and Santa isn't even helping. He's just sitting there laughing. Just then, Dropo comes running up outside the workshop. Voldar's henchman gets freaked out because he thought Santa was in the workshop. He looks back in the workshop and then gets shot in the chops with a red ball. He spits out the ball and then says that he doesn't know who this guy is, but he's gonna take care of him himself. Just as he pulls out his gun, Kimar comes out of the closet and takes it from him. He pushes the henchman into the workshop where the kids are just flat out abusing Voldar at this point. Kimar takes them both prisoner and Voldar looks like he's going to cry. Dropo comes in as Kimar's men take Voldar and his henchman away, and says ho ho ho! Santa says they they don't need him there. They've already got a great Santa of their own. And that all have a good laugh. Isn't that just swell? Golly gee, that was exciting!
33. Now in the final scene, Momar is sating goodbye to the children and to Santa. Naturally, she has to give them the obligatory head butts. Dropo comes back in for one last idiotic moment, and then Santa and the kids board the ship and head back home just in time for Christmas Eve. Doesn't that just make you feel warm and fuzzy all over?



Best Quote

Betty: "What are those funny things sticking out of your head?"
Kimar: "Those are our antennae."
Betty: "Are you a television set?"


- Betty talking to the Martians when she first meets up with them. - (Reviewer's Note: Now, I can understand the first question, but that second one is just stupid.)




Video Clip
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Santa Claus Conquers the Martians
Voldar get's a little lesson about what happens when you mess with a kid's Christmas. It's not a pretty sight.



The Conclusion

Oh man. I had a hell of a time getting this DVD. Neither Amazon, nor Movies Unlimited had it, and I couldn't find it anywhere except on E-Bay. I managed to get a copy in my hot little hands, and let me tell you something. It was worth it. The movie is now available on DVD through Movies Unlimited, but I think I might have just appreciated it a little more because of what I had to go through to get it. I wasn't really sure what to expect, because I had heard that the quality of the DVD was lacking and it looked like VHS quality. Frankly, the quality of the transfer on this DVD just looks like it was done from old film. I can understand that, considering there's probably not any pristine original prints of this film laying around in a vault somewhere. I'm just happy that they got this one onto DVD so that it can be enjoyed over and over again.

So what can I say about the movie itself? This, my friends, was just a flat out great movie. It had all the cheesiness and fun that you could possibly want, and it's a film that can be enjoyed by adults and children alike this holiday season. Everything about this movie is fun, and I think my only real complaint would have to be about the portrayal of Santa Claus by John Call. While it was sufficiently cheesy, it just didn't have the right feel to it and I don't really think that he fit all that well into the role. That serial killer laugh and the "bum in a santa suit" feel that he brings to the part just didn't do it for me. That's the only real reason I knocked off a half a bee. Everything else about this movie was just great.

The kids did a pretty decent job in their roles, and while some of the stuff that was written for them was either stupid or came off as being far over what their level of intelligence should have been, it didn't really matter because it didn't hurt the overall effect of the film. If anything, it kinda added to it. Pia Zadora is a tough one to figure out though. This was her first film, so it's understandable that she wouldn't be a top flight little actress, but the zombie-like look she has in her eyes throughout the greater portion of this film, is just, well...creepy. The I mean jeez, director said to look depressed, not hypnotized. It was only when it came down to attacking Voldar in the workshop that she sprang to life and became just like any other little kid. It was nice to see her like that, and I wish we could have seen a little more of that animation from her earlier in the film. Dropo, who was played by Bill McCutcheon, was a somewhat annoying character, but only if you look at his role in bits and pieces. When you're done watching the film, and you think back on his role in it as a whole, I think you'll find that he really wasn't as annoying as he seemed. The short amounts of time that Dropo is actually on the screen, makes him a far more tolerable character than if he were to have been hanging around all the time.

The special effects and props in this movie really weren't all that special, but then again, they were cheesy and fun and did have a really great look to them. The nicest thing about this film, is that it doesn't have to just be a holiday flick. This is the kind of a movie that would be fun to watch all year round. I think the only real question I'm left with is, why isn't this film considered more of a Christmas classic? It really should be. So do yourself a favor and pick this film up for the holidays. You'll be happy you did.

B-Movie Central's Rating: 4½ Bees

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Unseen Things: Origins



My series of contemporary fantasy / sci-fi novels, Unseen Things is now available through the official website, Amazon, Smashwords and other online retail sites.

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