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Planet of Dinosaurs
Riffed by RiffTrax
Riffers Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy, Bill Corbett
Series None
Date Released May 20, 2009

Planet of Dinosaurs is a 1978 science fiction film. Set in an unspecified future, the film follows the journey of Captain Lee and his crew after they crash land on a planet with similar life conditions as Earth, but millions of years behind in time. Encountering a wide variety of dangerous dinosaurs, the crew decides that its best chance for survival lies on finding higher ground and setting up a defensive perimeter on a higher plateau for refuge to wait for when or if their rescuers arrive. They soon encounter a deadly Tyrannosaurus and must figure out a way to defeat the creature and survive on the planet. RiffTrax released their riff in May 2009.

Synopsis and Full Riff

After a mechanical failure aboard the spaceship Odyssey, Captain Lee Norsythe (Louie Lawless) is forced to crash land on a planet with atmosphere and conditions much like that of Earth, although it is many light-years away. As the ship sinks into the lake that it landed in, communications officer Cindy (Mary Appleseth) realizes that she forgot the radio in the ship and attempts to retrieve it, with the assistance of fellow crew-member Chuck (Chuck Pennington). En route, Cindy is attacked and killed by an unidentified aquatic creature, prompting Chuck to return to shore without the radio.

Realizing that they are stranded, the remaining eight people aboard the ship decide that survival is their primary goal and begin to explore the planet that they have landed on. Derna Lee (Derna Wylde) quickly loses one of the laser guns that Mike (Max Thayer) had given her, leaving the stranded individuals with one less weapon. They eventually come across a Brontosaurus, which leads them to deduce that the planet is following a similar evolutionary track as Earth, but is millions of years younger. Later, Charlotte (Charlotte Speer) determines that the plant life, especially the berries, is poisonous. After encountering a fight between a Stegosaurus and a large Tyrannosaurus, Lee decides that the best option is to climb the mountains and reach a higher plateau, where he believes the large creatures will be unable to reach them.

During the ascent, Nyla (Pamela Bottaro) slips and loses the entire supply of food rations, which Lee refuses to retrieve. In a cave higher up the mountain, Vice-President of Spaceways Incorporated Harvey Baylor (Harvey Shain) discovers a nest full of eggs. After stealing an egg, Harvey is attacked and killed by a Centrosaurus. Soon after, much to ship engineer Jim's (James Whitworth) dismay, Lee decides to halt the expedition and settle at what he considers to be a defensible area. Lee expects to hold out until they are rescued, but Jim believes them to be trapped forever on the planet, and advises that they begin a new civilization. Lee triumphs and the remaining crew begin to build a defensive stockade around a cave. After several more encounters, including a giant spider, Struthiomimus and an Allosaurus, the large Tyrannosaurus arrives and kills Derna, demolishing the stockade in the process.

The crew finally agrees with Jim that the best way to survive is to kill the predator. Their first plan, devised by Lee, is to attempt to poison the dinosaur by smearing berries on a dead Polacanthus and leave it outside of the Tyrannosaurus's lair. The plan backfires when the beast attacks from behind, killing Mike. Jim's plan is to set up large, wooden stakes and coat them in the poison, then lure the predator into them. After some initial troubles, including a fight between the T. rex and Rhedosaurus, the plan works, killing the Tyrannosaurus, which nearly takes Jim with it.

Years pass and the survivors have set up an agricultural settlement. Chuck and Charlotte now have a son. Charlotte wonders if they will ever be rescued, to which Nyla comments that it does not seem important anymore.

Cast and Crew

  • James Whitworth as Jim
  • Pamela Bottaro as Nyla
  • Louie Lawless as Captain Lee Norsythe
  • Harvey Shain as Harvey Baylor
  • Charlotte Speer as Charlotte
  • Chuck Pennington as Chuck
  • Derna Wylde as Derna Lee
  • Max Thayer as Mike
  • Mary Appleseth as Cindy



See Also

External Links