How can a sci-fi project with Stanley Donen (Singin’ in the Rain) directing a cast of Kirk Douglas, Harvey Keitel and Farrah Fawcett with a script by Martin Amis be so bland? Maybe most sci-fi movies post-Alien were instantly rendered mediocre and middling.


Keitel calls Saturn 3 the nadir of his whole career. I wouldn’t go that far. Whilst it’s far from being some kind of genre classic, it’s far from being a turkey. Keitel plays Captain Benson fleeing to Douglas and Fawcett’s research station on Saturn’s third moon after he murdered one of his colleagues on Earth.

The word ‘quite’ is very appropriate when reviewing this film. It’s quite scary in some scenes (Keitel’s robot helps in this regard), and quite suspenseful in others. The whole film is quite entertaining. If this was a review of Alien I would be substituting the word ‘quite’ for ‘very’. I think that encapsulates Saturn 3. It’s a film you would enjoy if you caught it while channel surfing late at night. I remember when I first saw this film it was on late-night TV in the 80s. I watched it with my Dad. He was eagerly awaiting some nudity from Ms Fawcett but was disappointed when it finally happened. ‘I wait all that time for her to get her breasts out and she has two little nutmegs instead!’ Quite. Maybe this criticism encapsulates the whole film. In the words of the great (!) Simon Cowell, Saturn 3 is ‘distinctly average’.

2 and a half stars out of 5

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