No one has ever accused Roger Corman of ever having an original thought, and that lack of originality is certainly on display in his science fiction opus "Galaxy of Terror". The plot, concerning a rescue team on an unexplored planet answering a mysterious distress call, is an exact replica of the 1979 classic "Alien", but Corman isn't content to stop there.
The film borrows ideas and plot details from several other like-minded features, and yet despite that and its minuscule budget, the film is campy fun for a good portion of its running time. It transported me back to my youth, when films like this were a mainstay of my childhood. Unfortunately, it's not able to overcome the sheer cheapness of it all, not to mention a plot that is far too complicated for a project of such limited means.
There's a completely dispensable backstory that is set up in the beginning involving an earlier doomed mission by this ship's captain played by Grace Zabriskie, which is needless simply because it's never fully explained. The ending is equally cryptic, but by that time all of the fun and gleeful sleaziness has already been buried by the nonessential story that it doesn't really matter. Which is kind of a shame because the refreshingly old school make-up effects are quite good. Almost good enough to overshadow the terrible set design. "Galaxy of Terror" looks terrible, but it is fun for a while. It collapses under the weight of a ridiculously complicated story.