After winning Earth in a Galactic auction alien tyrant Lord Kress comes to view his new property and collect a cargo of Earthling slaves.
Since nobody told the Earthlings they were under new ownership they object to this quite violently. In turn Lord Kress and his crew of blond-wigged lackies turn Earth's defences into smoking embers.
In desperation the head of the Earth's military turn to super-scientist Maury for help.
The conversation runs a bit like this "Please help. Only we won't give you any actual resources or assistance and if anything goes wrong we'll blame you."
"Oh. Alright then."
Gathering a crack team (consisting of a cocky spaceman, a crooked gambler, an acrobatic boxer, a pair of disreputable scientists, his daughter and a pair of lovestruck robots who are deeply, fucking annoying) Maury sets to work on finding a defence for Earth. Only, not in any great hurry. It's not like people are being harvested or anything.
There are a few positive things that can be said about this slice of Italian low-budget hokum.
The costume and makeup departments seem to have been the only people who bothered making an effort. Marisa Longo's leather leotard is a piece of marketing genius (see poster) while Lord Krell's scaly face-makeup is actually quite impressive. Somebody also had to find a job-lot of He-Man blond wigs for Krell's henchmen. That can't have been easy.
The scene where spring-heeled boxer Norman battles a boxing android is quite memorable and the most entertaining thing in the whole film. Possibly the only entertaining thing in fact.
Now let's look at all the things Star Odyssey gets wrong, starting with the title.
Dictionary.com defines Odyssey as : "A long series of wanderings or adventures, especially when filled with notable experiences, hardships etc." None of which happens in this film. Methinks the producers wanted a title with "Star." in it somewhere and picked a word that sounded cool.
Basically we're in the realms of Star-Wars cash-ins again. As we shall see, if we're not scraping the bottom of the barrel we're not far off it.
Some of the problems can be put down to budget restrictions: the way the destruction of Earth's defences is lovingly rendered in WW2 stock footage. ( black and white!), the invading clones being armed with Space swords that are literally wooden swords painted with shiny white paint, and the special effects generally being on the level of a 1950s drive-in timefiller.
Others can be laid squarely at the fault of the director and writers.
The pace is slow and the characters meander towards their final battle with all the urgency of pensioners looking for a nice cardigan. Apparently nobody has noticed that Earth just got invaded which is why Maury's team can take their time. Can I also point out once again that our heroes have been told "Go save the Earth but sort it out yourselves." You'd think that Defence Command would have provided a few guards and a space ship or two. Instead the impressively moustached male leads have to nick one.
Then there's the two frigging robots who add nothing whatsoever to the story. "Star Wars had robots. We should have robots". - but sod giving them any relevance or making them look anything other than crap Tin Man knockoffs.
The acting is nothing special and anyway the English dub stamps out any possible nuance or emotional inflection. Special mention must be made of ace pilot "Hollywood" who hams it up so much even the other characters point it out. The guy spends the whole film acting like he's in a propaganda newsreel - all fists on hips and dramatic stances - I'm honestly not sure if that was meant to be funny or not.
Action? There is some. It isn't very good and I got bored.
What really makes Star Odyssey stand out in all the wrong ways is the editing. Whoever stitched the film together put two entire scenes in the wrong place. In a better film I might think it was a deliberate storytelling trick or a flashback but here it is quite obvious that the reels are in the wrong order.
And nobody noticed.
Did nobody bother viewing the finished product before they shoved it out to cinemas? Or did everybody concerned lose interest as soon as the footage was in the can? That shows how much of a shonky, quick-buck lash-up we're dealing with here.
To sum up: If you like low-budget Italian knockoffs you still won't like this. As a film Star Odyssey fails as anything other than an object lesson in how not to do it. Avoid