Monday, June 17, 2013

Eyes Behind the Stars - Italian MiB Aren't Very Nice!

Eyes Behind The Stars
Directed by Mario Gariazzo
Written by Mario Gariazzo
Starring Robert Hoffmann, Nathalie Delon & Martin Balsam

Tag Lines:

There is no escape from this world no one can be trusted.

Inter galactic Sci-Fi terror

Alternate Titles:
Occhi dalle stelle (Eyes Behind The Stars) - Original Italian Title
Der Angriff kommt aus dem All... (The Attack Comes From Outer Space) - West Germany
Gangsters ap' to diastima (Gangsters From Space) - Greece 
La quatrième rencontre (The Fourth Meeting) - France
Los ojos de las estrellas (The Eyes of the Stars) - Spain
Silmät tähtien takaa (Eyes of the Stars) - Finland
Terror - West Germany
Ögon bortom stjärnorna (Eye Beyond the Stars) - Sweden
Øjne bag stjernerne (Eyes Behind the Stars)Denmark
Yildizlarin Gerisindeki Gozler (Behind the Eyes of Stars) Turkish

Eyes Behind the Stars is one of those films that you are either really going to dig, or you're really going to fall asleep and never actually see.  I fell into the former category.  While the film is extremely slow moving, it also has a strange hypnotic quality to it.  I was rather tired when I watched this and I thought I might end up falling asleep.  I was quite surprised to not only find that I stayed awake for the whole thing, but that I really quite enjoyed it as well!

Well, Hello Karin!  

Peter is wondering if that coat makes him look fat......

The film opens on a photographer and a model taking some fashion photos in the woods on an autumn afternoon.  After finishing up one roll, Peter (the photographer) tells  Karin (the model) to change into her next set of clothes while he goes to find another location.  He finds a small clearing that he thinks will be perfect. When they both reach the clearing, they get an uneasy feeling as though they are being watched.  There are no birds or insect sounds either.  Their watches stop.  Naturally, they talk themselves out of being scared off and continue on with their shoot.  When Peter is developing the film later on that night, he finds that he has captured something in the photos of his model:  alien creatures and their UFO!

Peter returns to the woods to take more pictures and see if he can find the creatures and vanishes.  Karin calls a mutual friend, Tony, who's a newspaper reporter.  She shows him the photographs that Peter took and he keeps some negatives to make copies.  Shortly after Tony leaves, Karin is abducted by aliens as well.

Let's talk about said aliens for a moment, shall we?  We start with what I think is a fairly creepy set up.  Then we get to see what they look like:

Apparently clothe and leather are the preferred materials for space suits!

They're a bit goofy, and not really what I was thinking I was going to see.  Still, it could have been much worse.  The fact that they're in spacesuits and completely covered means that you can imagine something truly hideous beneath those face shields, and that helps to keep the creep factor up.

Anyway, the story kinda shifts gears at this point as we follow Tony.  He's trying to get the the bottom of his friends's disappearances and things start to take an X-files like twist.  The Men in Black (here called Silencers) keep harassing Tony, roughing him up and telling him to forget everything he's seen.  Things get even worse when the MiB learn of the negatives that he possesses.  They always seem to be one step ahead of him and it becomes clear that someone around Tony is not what they appear to be.  He enlists the help of UFOlogist  and together they start to put the pieces together.  Sort of.  Kinda.  Not really.  I'm not sure.

MiB doin' what they do best.  Hey, where's Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones?

The last act of the movie is pretty nonsensical and you've just gotta hang on for the ride.  Karin reappears, the MiB are after her.  There's a psychic and gun fights and some sort of doctor who works outside the system, or something.  Beats the crap out of me.  The ending is a bit of a surprise as well, which you're just going to have to watch for yourself!

Midnight Cinephile Tally:

Body Count:  11 dead altogether.....and one dog is blinded by aliens.

Boob Count:  Sorry, Chet.  No boobs here.

Beast Count:  We get three space suited aliens!

Final Thoughts
This was an interesting reminded me of a flick that I saw long ago called UFO:  Target Earth.  I'll have to hunt that down again. I said before, this is a pretty slow moving film, but if you are in the right state of mind and you're willing to go along for the ride, it's actually a creepy little UFO/MiB movie that I think is severely underrated.  It is currently only available as part of movie packs that are put out by Brentwood and Mill Creek (I have this movie on two different compilations).  I would love to see this get cleaned up and get a proper release.

The music was suitably strange....electronic and generically poppy.  I loved it.

Final Rating
Three out of Five Pizza Rolls!

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