Saturn 3

Do You Remember 1980’s Saturn 3?

Let’s visit Saturn 3. It’s a neat 1980 sci-fi film starring Farrah Fawcett , Kirk Douglas and Harvey Keitel, directed by Stanley Donne and John Barry. Be warned as SPOILERS are straight ahead!

Set in the future, Saturn 3 is an outpost where scientists are working to hydroponically grow food for Earth.They do this beneath the surface of Saturn’s third moon, Titan. When they (Farrah Fawcett as Alex, Kirk Douglas as Adam) aren’t working they are lovers in space. They exercise together, play together, etc.
Saturn 3

Things get complicated quickly…Arriving as a stowaway, is Benson (Harvey Keitel ) and he is up to no good! He killed a fellow astronaut scientist and took his place for the voyage. He brings a bunch of cargo and one special canister. What could it be? Be patient, I’ll tell ya. Don’t worry. Benson is immediately smitten with Alex (Farrah) and who could blame him! He offers her various drugs and explains that this is the way of present Earth. He also lets her know that body sharing is very common. He
insists that Adam(Kirk) is the old and obsolete man.

He’s really pushing the issue.
Saturn 3

Very shortly, he introduces his cargo- a set of Tinker Toys! I mean, assembles a huge robot named “Hector.” There is fresh lab grown brains in the special canister, that is a blank page, with no thoughts, input, or experience. Kind of like me.

Benson (Keitel) is mind linked to the robot via a transmitter inserted into the back of his head. Hector soon falls for Alex (Farrah) as he picks up every nuance of Benson’s brain.
Saturn 3

The robot kills a dog owned by Alex and Adam, and this kind of makes the already rocky relationship fall apart quickly. Following a cringe worthy “robot needle instrument to eye” scene, the space lovers square off against the robot and master.
Saturn

Alex and Adam set up traps and the robot trumps them at every turn. At some point Benson (Keitel) dies and becomes one with the robot, taking over both the space post and unfortunately, Adam. He put one of the outlets in his head. Wonder if he got good TV reception?

Adam conceives a plan and doesn’t let Alex in on it. Meanwhile, The Robot, now Benson and Hector combined, commands them to report to work, to increase productivity. Adam sacrifices himself and knocks the robot into a leftover trap. It works, even though it didn’t before.

Jump to Alex (Farrah) on board a vessel that is approaching Earth, with a small crowd exchanging pills while viewing the planet through large windows.

[Via] Scream Factory TV

The good and not so good notes…
Now, that last scene kind of falls flat for me, it had dialogue that feels like it could’ve been changed to finish the film in a better manner. Kind of tie it up. I loved the set design of the Saturn 3 outpost.Some weird labyrinth of metals and ramps and a lot of deep blue colors.

I didn’t like Keitel’s tiny ponytail. It made me want to snip it! His speech pattern was cold and empty in contrast to Alex (Farrah) and Adam (Kirk). It gave him a real creep factor.
Saturn 3

Overall, I liked the film a lot- the robot was cool, there was action, humor, drama, everything you’d want! So, I recommend Saturn 3. You can order your copy from Shout Factory and as always they’ve packed in some extras:

  • New High Definition Transfer
  • Commentary by Greg Moss (Saturn 3 Fan site) and film critic David Bradley
  • Interviews with Academy Award winning Special Effects artist Colin Chilvers and actor Roy Dotrice
  • Deleted Scene
  • Additional scenes from the network television version
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • TV Spots
  • Still Gallery

Saturn 3
Just be ready to figure out if you’re obsolete or not.

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One thought on “Do You Remember 1980’s Saturn 3?

  1. Lance says:

    I had big hopes for this movie and remember all the articles on it in Starlog. Then I recall being kind of disappointed in the actual movie. Hector’s design always seemed poor to me. We have rather human reminding metal shapes on the legs and torso yet the arms had no such treatment, going for industrial functionality. The head also seemed so out of place in regards to the overall design. In fact it looks like they combined 3 different designs to give us a hulking chrome C3PO Terminator. We even get the little bar braces on the sides of the knees.

    Another thing that always irked me was the design of the station. It was, to me, like someone cleaned up and turned on the lights to a Geiger design but had less money to make it. I guess that can kind of apply to Hector also.

    I also wonder if Hector influenced the design of Cain from RoboCop 2. The both share the whole brain in a jar turns a robot into a murder machine foundation.

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