Monday With Mildred: “Space Station 76”

Space Station 76 movie poster

Space Station 76

I really want to watch CFR watch this movie. I know she would groan and complain and hate it a whole lot. It would be awesome.

I had a stupid grin on my face the whole time, which my watching companion hated, much as she hated this movie. But I love bad movies, and this is one of the very best bad movies I’ve ever seen. Did you love the 70s? Yeah, no one else did. It was awkward and moronic and the rear view mirror is the best way to view it. Space Station 76 is a pastiche of every bad science fiction film ever made for tv in the 70s. Within one minute I was laughing out loud at a fantastic visual joke that became one of many, many visual jokes and Todd Rungren songs.

Far in the future a sad young woman steps off a clean white shuttle that traveled 30 miles per hour to the outer planets of the solar system to begin working on the anamorphic space station number 76. She immediately encounters the cutest little girl ever, dragging a red crayon down the pristine and very 70s white walls of the station then begins working as a navigator under the leadership of a massively closeted and fantastically sexist boss who spends every moment dragging deeply on one cigarette after another. The girl’s mother has a prescription for valium at “whatever dose you want”, that she fills at a kiosk in the hallway. Her father has a fake hand that needs recharging often. The few people on the station fill every 70s swinging stereotype and the station itself never stops being deliciously stereotypical 70s.       

That’s pretty much it for plot. There is a bit of tension as we see a humongous asteroid making its way on a collision course with the lightly populated station that doesn’t seem to have any real purpose beyond providing a home for a gang of paisley clad stepford people.

The most deeply explored personality is the captain, who begins to seem positively evil with his extreme homophobic self-hatred, unless you hate the valium mom even more. Then the film just kind of ends. Since there wasn’t much of a plot anyway, that might be a good or bad thing.

Everything is deeply 70s, as viewed through a 21st century lens, and it will mess with your mind and again and again as it tries to balance the 70s sf lines and colors and sound fx and dialog with modern sensibilities that doesn’t quite get why the captain hates himself so much and why the valium mom can’t love the cutest little girl in the world. Everything is very recognizable and completely unfathomable at the same time and the whole thing was tons of fractured fun.

If you’re looking for something completely bizarre. Like, really, really bizarre, then check this out, especially if you’re a fan of Liv Tyler being cluelessly funny. It’s a good lesson on how much we’ve changed as a culture, presented in a hilarious way. I liked it a lot, maybe you will as well.

CFR: In Addition: After reading the plot summary in Wikipedia I can safely say Nope to this movie. However, I might just turn it on for graphics. Oh Mildred! Why must you write such intriguing reviews!!!!

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