‘Starcrash’ and Burn

(Above: David Hasselhoff as Prince Simon in ‘Starcrash’)

As with previous Star Wars sequels, this year’s release of Star Wars:The Last Jedi has set off a wave of nostalgia for the 1977 original.

Perhaps less remembered is that the following year, 1978, a $4 million production shamelessly sought to capitalize on Star Wars‘ success, only to be dispatched to galactic oblivion.

What upstart dared challenge the Force?

Starcrash was its name. The space epic’s cast included David Hasselhoff as Prince Simon and Christopher Plummer as The Emperor of the Galaxy, with a score from legendary Hollywood composer John Barry.

You can stream the camp classic for free today through Sunday at Shout Factory TV.

Caroline Munro (above) stars as Stella Star, a smuggler who is recruited by the Emperor to find his son Prince Simon and destroy a secret weapon developed by the evil Count Zarth Arn (Joe Spinell). Star is joined by her partner in crime Akton, played by Marjoe Gortner (below), who also appeared memorably as the certifiable, self-appointed citizen militia leader in Earthquake (1974).

Directed by Luigi Cozzi under the pseudonym Lewis Coates, Starcrash quickly entered the annals of awful films that are fun to watch. In fact, it’s one of the 14 new Mystery Science Theater 3000 episodes that debuted this year on Netflix.

In case you’re wondering, Starcrash currently rates a 33% on the TomatoMeter, with a 38% audience score.

About Larry Greenberg

A former local beat reporter and film critic, co-founder Lawrence Greenberg has more than 25 years’ experience as a writer and public relations executive.

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