Visit To A Small Planet (1960)

a visit to a small planet 1960

Jerry Lewis is an alien from a planet eight million light years away in this adaption of the Gore Vidal play. As expected it’s loaded with sight gags and the usual Lewis madness and high energy. If you’re not a Jerry fan this won’t make you one but you still have to admire the work he puts into it.

Kreton (Jerry Lewis)  keeps ducking classes taught by Mr.Delton (John Williams) so he can buzz Earth. Finally Kreton takes off thinking he’ll watch the Civil War in 1861.  He ends up in Manassas,Virginia in 1960 at the home of TV personality Roger Putnam Spelding (Fred Clark). Before landing, his saucer is spotted by Bob Mayberry (Gale Gordon), a civil defense official.. He tells local youth Conrad (Earl Holliman) to take a look through his binoculars. He doesn’t see anything. All he’s interested in is getting ready for the costume party at Mayberry’s. It has a Civil War theme.

Inside the Spelding home Roger is getting dressed as Jefferson Davis, his flighty wife Rheba (Lee Patrick) is Scarlett O’Hara and their daughter Ellen (Joan Blackman) is a southern belle. Conrad decides to be a spaceman. Roger can’t wait to watch his TV show he taped earlier where he debunks UFO’s. Coming inside is Kreton dressed as a confederate soldier. He thinks he’s going to watch some real battles. He’s soon straightened out about exactly when he is.

While watching TV Kreton proves that he’s an alien.. Mayberry keeps trying to get a picture of him but Kreton just pulls on his ear when he wants to change things and that results in no pictures. Delton comes to Earth and tells Kreton he can stay as long as he doesn’t get in the way of anything and not reveal he’s an alien.  Rather than go to the party Kreton stays in a room provided him by the family and spends time with Rags the dog.

A lot of sight gags and then when Kreton gets back to the house he overhears Roger’s boss firing him. He soon fixes that.  Now Roger wants Kreton to marry Ellen instead of Conrad. That night she takes him to a beatnik club called the Hungry Brain. Even though this is a comedy the club scene is mostly embarrassing with it’s “hip” talk and other so-called beatnik behavior.

The band is led by drum legend Buddy Rich. Kreton plays bongos from his table. Barbara Lawson plays a scat singer and a dancer. She sings one song and then she and Jerry do a dance number.

Delton is watching from the home planet and interferes with Kreton and that chases everyone out of the club. Kreton and Ellen go to a lover’s lane as Kreton’s introduction on love continue. He usually observes Ellen and Conrad but for now he’s on his own. Conrad will not be happy and neither will Delton. Time for a long series of sight gags before it’s all over.

This was Barbara Lawson’s only movie and she only appeared on TV in an episode of “The Millionaire.”  Her real name is Barbara Bostock and under that name appeared in a number of TV shows and also did a lot of stage work.

Barbara and Jerry do their thing

Barbara and Jerry do their thing

About vintage45

I'm a big fan of vintage books,movies,TV shows and music. I encourage everyone to patronize your local used book/record store and pick up some of the good stuff. My posts are capsule reviews of some favorites that you may want to investigate. The albums posted aren't really reviews but items from my collection that are still available. I try and point out highlights of each one and let the music speak for itself. Thanks to all for checking out the blog.
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