Waterlogged

Taking bits from old dark house movies, a chunk of It Came from Outer Space and a slice of The Thing from Another World, Destination Inner Space is a foreshadowing piece of undersea media, the concept hibernating for a few decades until James Cameron took charge in The Abyss.

That lengthy sentence above, with its many title drops, exists because Destination Inner Space is a film of parts and pieces, cobbled together for the slim, somewhat overlong journey the film takes. Expect plentiful moments with the cast gliding underwater in an open submarine, lots of fish, and other unexciting happenings in the ocean.

Every bit of money Destination Inner Space didn’t have shows on screen

On board an undersea base – with an exterior that visually looks like a plastic bath toy – Destination Inner Space confines the crew when an alien monster breaches their security. That leads to discussions of scientific importance and the inevitable military response. Calling the philosophical discussions rudimentary would be overstating things.

Credit though to the unnamed creature, which other than an immobile face, looks fantastic underwater. Individually applied scales move with the waves, and significant, colorful fins provide eye-fetching highlights. Sadly, when on dry land, it’s less convincing, bending and folding wherever the suit isn’t properly supported. Every bit of money Destination Inner Space didn’t have shows on screen.

For its blandness and its cheapness though, Destination Inner Space screams pure 1960s cinema. The two women onboard have the latest fashions, the diving gear appears primitive, James Hong is racially cast as a cook (complete with a parrot on his shoulder), and the overall light, airy color palette is comfort food for the eyes. Destination Inner Space’s kitsch factor is almost infinite, and the 1966 release date feels anachronistic, color photography aside. This has all the core elements of the prior decade, notably star Scott Brady barking about what Washington wants and military commands.

It’s forgettable, but in the short term, Destination Inner Space is a wildly goofy time waster.

Video

Wonderful mastering brings Destination Inner Space a natural presentation on Blu-ray. Intact, light grain barely impacts the the codec (if at all). Given its own disc inside this Sci-Fi Chillers set, there’s clearly enough room to spare, preserving this print, which has little damage to speak of. Some gate weave causes a small “bounce” to the imagery, if not with any consistency.

Dense, consistent color shows limited possible fading, keeping imagery pleasingly natural. While Destination: Inner Space doesn’t astound with its palette, there’s enough pop to keep it visually engaging on this format.

Well mastered, likely at 2K, the result produces detail in close-ups and crisp underwater photography too.

Audio

Standard DTS-HD mono holds an expected echo from the undersea, all-metal environment. The score reaches a stable peak with a small low-end rumble on occasion. Unremarkable, although there’s nothing inherently wrong either.

Extras

Historians David Del Valle’s and Stan Shaffer’s commentary joins a lengthy conversation about the film with Stephen R. Bissette and Tim Lucas.

Destination: Inner Space
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras
3

Movie

Hokey and derivative, Destination Inner Space is goofy ’60s era fun in the right ways.

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The following six screen shots serve as samples for our subscription-exclusive set of 29 full resolution, uncompressed HD screen shots grabbed directly from the Blu-ray:


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