Film (1981). Sandler/Emenegger Productions/Gold Key Entertainment. Directed by Bruce Bryant. Screenplay by Bryant and Carol Johnson from a concept by James Castle. Cast includes Christopher Cary, Kristine DeBell, Sandy Kenyon, Carl Lumbly, Jordan Michals, Joe Penny and Neil Ross. 90 minutes. Colour.
In the year 2191, the Whitestar Lines interplanetary Spaceship liner Arcturus is making its maiden run from Earth to Jupiter when the ship's controlling Computer, Main Cerebral (Ross, voice only) sounds an Abandon Ship alert. Most evacuate in lifepods to Callisto, Jupiter's second major moon, but Captain Montaine (Cary) remains behind out of a sense of duty; others still on board, for various reasons, include navigator Simmons (Penny), tourist Fiona (DeBell), reporter Keshah (Lumbly) and Whitestar Lines director DeMatte (Kenyon) with his girlfriend Lady Lima (Michals). It is soon found that the computer faked an emergency and is removing life support from the empty sections of the vessel. Captain Montaine leads the way to a remaining lifepod, which the wicked entrepreneur DeMatte tries to hijack, an action not made much more intelligible by the revelation that the Arcturus was originally meant as a Starship until DeMatte crippled it, possibly for financial gain. Moreover, for not easily understood reasons, he had abducted the intended pilot for the ships' interstellar mission, turning him into the Cybernetic controller of Main Cerebral.
DeMatte is killed, his motives remaining unclear; most of the others depart for Callisto. Montaine decides to remain onboard with the now restored Main Cerebral who, now that its Amnesia has been lifted, decides to set course for Sirius. Lifepod provides modest low-budget pleasure but does not merit sustained attention. [GFi]
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