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Zeta-One

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    Ian Jane
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  • Zeta-One



    Released by: Kino/Redemption
    Released on: March 19, 2013.

    Director: Michael Cort

    Cast: Robin Hawdon, Yutte Stensgaard, James Robertson Justice, Dawn Addams

    Year: 1969

    Purchase From Amazon


    The Movie:


    Directed by Michael Cort in 1969 for Tigon Studios, Zeta-One, also known as The Love Factor and Alien Women, begins when a British secret agent names James Word (Robin Hawdon) comes home to his ultra-stylish apartment to find that someone has made their way in before him. He removes his pistol from his pants (no need for a holster) and enters - only to find blonde bombshell Ann Olsen (Yutte Stensgaard) waiting for him. In fact, Ms. Olsen, who is James' boss' secretary, has even cleaned up and made dinner for him. It seems his file contains a key to his apartment among other sordid details of his live, and curiosity has gotten the better of her.


    So what do they do? They enjoy a few drinks and then play strip poker… for about half an hour. Seriously, the first half hour of this movie is the two of them just goofing around and while Cort is wise enough to at least get Stensgaard out of her clothes, nothing really happens. Once they head to the bedroom, however, she manages to get Word talking and he tells her about what really happened on that case he took in Scotland some time ago. Through flashbacks we learn about the existence of a race of alien women called The Angvia who are zipping around town abducting hot chicks. Their latest target is a stripper and they're lead by a woman named Zeta (Dawn Addams), who hangs out in a dark room full of strange colored lights. As luck would have it, a man named Major Bourdon (James Robertson Justice) and his assistant Swyne (Charles Hawtrey) also know about the Angvians and they intend to capture and torture some of them for reasons that never really make a whole lot of sense. Word gets mixed up in all of this, shags some chicks, enjoys a few cocktails and sort of just hangs out a lot.


    Zeta-One doesn't make a whole lot of sense but it is awash in low budget late sixties psychedelic pop style. Women are put through some sort of scanner that's little more than a lava lamp style effect, Angvian ladies run around the woods and take out an army of men using their hands (which emit laser 'boop' noises but now visual laser beams) and at one point a lady gets up and does a strip tease act with a giant python wrapped around her neck. All of the ladies seem to wear nothing but miniskirts and giant thigh-high go-go boots… except when they're wearing nothing at all or running around clad in purple rope fetish outfits with stickers over their nipples. It's all very… odd and completely nonsensical yet somehow completely watchable.


    Obviously none of this is meant to be taken in the least bit seriously, but the movie does occasionally wander into some surprisingly sadistic territory when we visit Boulder in his torture dungeon. Here he has a few women tied up and shackled and his interrogation of a poor blonde woman clad only in her skivvies isn't exactly friendly. Overall though, this is high camp of the purest kind, from the disgruntled talking elevator that Word has to deal with (it insists people say please and thank you and will not take you to the thirteenth floor because it's superstitious!) to the blatant parody of spy films like the Bond movies and pop sci-fi like Barberella. It's got enough naked ladies running around doing different silly things and enough awkward action to compensate for the fact that the jokes are bad and the storyline even worse. A good movie? No, not at all, but lots of fun in its own stupid way.


    Video/Audio/Extras:


    Zeta-One looks good on Blu-ray in AVC encoded 1080p high definition framed at 1.66.1 widescreen and mastered from the original 35mm negative. As it has been with most of the Kino pickups from Redemption (or in this case, Jezebel), it doesn't appear that the movie has undergone any seriously intensive restoration but the elements used here were obviously in pretty nice shape to begin with so outside of some minor specks and a couple of small scratches, there's nothing to be concerned about. Detail is solid as is texture and color reproduction looks nice and natural and is often times remarkably impressive - especially during those crazy, colorful psychedelic moments. There are no issues with compression artifacts evident nor are there any obvious examples of either edge enhancement or noise reduction. All in all, this is a nice film-like transfer that should make the film's fan base pretty happy.


    The only audio option on the disc is a DTS-HD Master Audio Mono track in the film's original English language, no alternate language or subtitle options. This isn't a particularly exciting track but for an older Mono mix, it leaves little room for complaint. The levels are nicely balanced, the dialogue is easy enough to understand and distortion (you'll hear it in the opening theme song) or hiss does make it into the mix is minimal. The score sounds good as well, it's got some nice punch behind it when the movie asks for it.


    Extras are limited to a static menu, chapter selection, a trailer for the feature and a trailer for Girl On A Motorcycle.


    The Final Word:


    A film more concerned with pop art visuals and goofy humor than with any sort of logical story, Zeta-One is nevertheless quite a bit of fun. It's ridiculously stylish, sexy and silly - all of which adds up to a fun watch for fans of British sexploitation pictures. The Blu-ray from Kino/Redemption looks very nice and sounds good too. Even if it's short on extras, it's a good goofy time at the movies, even if it does take a half an hour or so to really go anywhere.


    Click on the images below for full sized Blu-ray screen caps!































    • Mike Howlett
      #1
      Mike Howlett
      Senior Member
      Mike Howlett commented
      Editing a comment
      I was thinking, do I really need Zeta One on Blu? Then I saw Yutte's boobs in Hi-Def. Yes, perhaps I do.
    Posting comments is disabled.

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