Nude on the Moon
|Nude on the Moon|
|Directed by||Raymond Phelan
|Produced by||Martin Caplan
|Written by||Raymond Phelan
|Music by||Daniel Hart
|Distributed by||J.E.R. Pictures Inc.|
Nude on the Moon is a 1961 sexploitation film co-written and co-directed by Doris Wishman and Raymond Phelan under the shared pseudonyms "O. O. Miller" and "Anthony Brooks". The film was produced in 1960 but was not released theatrically until 1961. Doris Wishman went on to become a significant filmmaker and noteworthy director of sexploitation movies. Wishman is also credited as the film's co-producer.
Nude on the Moon (also released under the title Moon Dolls) is the second of eight nudism-related films Wishman produced and directed. The nudist or nudist camp genre was a fairly common exploitation film genre of the late 1950s and early 1960s. While most nudist films were set within the confines of a conventional nudist camp, apparently as a promotional gimmick Wishman decided to invent a story about the discovery of a nudist civilization living on the Moon.
Rocket scientist Dr. Jeff Huntley has been working on a lunar rocket with Professor Nichols. However, his mediocre government funding has kept the prospect of a launch distant. His luck changes, however, when he inherits three million dollars from his late uncle Ted. He invests it into construction of the rocket, and sets off for the moon six months later. At one point during his office work, his secretary Cathy makes advances on him, but he does not take the hint. He is accompanied to the moon by Nichols and brings a full complement of scientific equipment, including a camera. After a near-miss with some asteroids, the rocket lands on the moon.
Upon landing, Jeff and Nichols discover a very hospitable world: there is vegetation and breathable air, and nuggets of gold litter the ground. Soon afterwards, they encounter a tribe of nudist extraterrestrials (actually topless instead of fully nude). The men separate to observe the natives, who end up capturing and jailing them. Their female chieftain convenes the villagers to a telepathic meeting to decide the fate of the Earth men, and they ultimately deem them harmless and set them free.
The freed Nichols continues taking notes and observing the nudists in their day-to-day activities. Jeff becomes smitten with the tribe chieftain, and Nichols has to tear him away to continue with their work. They photograph the natives playing catch, sharpening axes, dancing and bathing. When their oxygen runs low, Nichols orders Jeff back to the ship, but he can't bear the thought of leaving the chieftain. His new lover breaks the spell, though, by tapping him with a magic wand.
As they return to Earth, the men realize that they have left their camera behind, and thus have no evidence of the aliens' existence. Jeff is further dispirited upon learning that the government is withdrawing its funding of the rocket program. His spirits lift, however, when Cathy enters the room and reveals herself as the moon chieftain. The movie ends as they embrace.
Nude on the Moon features the original song "I'm Mooning Over You (My Little Moon Doll)" sung by Ralph Young who, according to the Something Weird Video DVD release, appeared in Wishman's film Blaze Starr Goes Nudist under the pseudonym of "Russ Martine". Young would soon thereafter meet Tony Sandler and form Sandler and Young, a successful easy-listening duo. The lyrics and melody to the song were written by Wishman's niece, Judith Kushner, who collaborated with Wishman on many later film projects. Future Tonight Show bandleader Doc Severinsen also reportedly arranged the score for the film's theme song. It has been rumored that Doc Severinsen appears in the film, but he does not.
Like many of Wishman's films, Nude on the Moon is considered a cult movie. References to it in pop culture include:
- Nude On The Moon, a two-disc CD anthology of music by The B-52's, released on Rhino Records. Lead singer Fred Schneider was a friend of Wishman's in her later years.
- "Nude on the Moon", a 1996 single by electronica duo Tipsy, also appears on the album Trip Tease. One of the remixes is called the "naked volleyball mix".