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Blockbuster Tuesday: Red Planet

Tuesday 21 April at 8.30pm

Red Planet

Val Kilmer, Carrie-Anne Moss and Benjamin Bratt

Director: Antony Hoffman

Val Kilmer, Tom Sizemore and Carrie-Anne Moss star in this efficient sci-fi action adventure set on Mars.

Kilmer, Sizemore and Moss, along with Benjamin Bratt (Law & Order); Terrence Stamp and Aussie Simon Baker (The Guardian) play various experts who travel to Mars to assess its viability as a potential colony location. In the near future depicted in this film, Earth's natural resources have been ravaged, and humans need to start looking elsewhere for habitation.

But they experience technical problems during their descent to Mars' surface and must take drastic action to survive. The situation is exacerbated by interpersonal conflict within the group and a rogue "helper" robot named AMEE, which has inadvertently been switched over to combat mode.

Red Planet came out the same year as Brian De Palma's similarly-themed Mission To Mars, and both films were pretty much maligned by critics, but as space-bound action adventures go, Red Planet is a decent watch.

It has a pleasing colour scheme, decent special effects and there has been an effort made to elevate the proceedings with the petty conflicts between the characters. But Aliens, it is not.

Still, it's definitely worth two hours of your time, or tape space.