Cover of the Lenfilm DVD Release
|Directed by||Pavel Klushantsev|
|Produced by||L. Presnyakova|
|Written by||Aleksandr Kazantsev|
|Music by||Johann Admoni|
|Edited by||Volt Suslov|
In English, the film is often informally referred to as Planet of the Storms, Planet of Storms, Planet of Tempests, Planeta Burg, and Storm Planet, though it was never actually released in the US in its original form until the 1990s, via home video. It is better known to American audiences via two American television movies which featured special effects and most of the primary footage from it: Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet and Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women.
Three Soviet spaceships, the Sirius, the Vega, and the Capella, are on their way from Lunar Station 7 for the first human landing on Venus, and the first exploration of the planet. But the Capella is suddenly struck by a large meteorite and completely destroyed, killing all aboard. After mourning the loss of their friends, the remaining two ships, the Sirius and the Vega, soon continue on, even though the planned mission required three ships. A replacement spaceship, the Arcturus, will be sent from Earth, but will not arrive for two months.
The cosmonauts aboard the Sirius (Ilya, Roman and Alyosha) and aboard the Vega (Ivan and Allan, and one woman, Masha) all agree that proceeding with the landing and exploration is better than waiting two months, so Ivan and Allan, with their large robot assistant "John" (now partly dis-assembled for flight), descend in their glider spacecraft from the Vega to Venus, leaving Masha in orbit to monitor communications between the ships and ground crews....but all contact is lost with her after they land in a misty swamp. The gigantic, tall Sirius spacecraft gently lands upright and vertically on its four shock-absorber wing struts, but at a different, volcanic-terrain location, and because the atmosphere is poisonous, the men exit the Sirius in their protective spacesuits and helmets....While wandering around some large boulders, Aloysha is suddenly attacked and dragged by a large carnivorous plant creature toward its mouth, but he is quickly rescued by Ilya and Roman. After photographing the creature and sharing some jokes about the incident, they proceed to search for Ivan and Allan in their hovercar (unloaded from the Sirius).
During their journey, they hear what sounds like a distant eerie voice of a woman, and then soon encounter a gigantic, sedate brontosaur-like creature, from which one of the men quickly takes a blood sample from its tail, as the others laugh. Meanwhile, after completely assembling robot John, Ivan and Allan are suddenly attacked by several human-size tyrannosaur-like beasts in the swamp, some of which they kill with their handguns. Later, they come across a large deep ravine, so with cords attached to one of the gigantic tall trees near the edge of the ravine, -and to John, -and to an anchoring boulder, John powerfully fells the tree over the ravine by rotating his torso. They then walk on the tree, over the ravine, while listening to recorded music John plays. Allan is later weakened by a wound by the attack at the swamp, so robot John finds a cave for their protection from the wet environment. However, both men develop a fever and are soon too weak to stand.
During the search in their hovercar over ocean water near a beach, the Sirius crew submerge themselves in the hovercar to escape an attack by a large flying pterosaur-like creature. Underwater, they discover a head sculpture of one of the flying creatures (with ruby gemstone eyes), apparently made by an intelligent being. After they emerge onto the beach, Alyosha also finds a strange small triangular rock, which he keeps.
After they radio-contact robot John and learn of the men's fevers, they instruct John to immediately give life-saving medicine to the men. Ivan and Allan soon recover, just as flows of molten hot mud surround them. Desperately, Ivan has John carry them safely across the steaming mud, but John over-heats and slows from the added weight on him, so John attempts to forcibly remove them with his claw and painfully injures Allan. The hovercar group suddenly arrives just in time to rescue the men and quickly leave the area, but robot John, now non-functional from the intense heat, slowly falls into the now deep molten flow and perishes. During their trip back to the Sirius, they again see another gigantic brontosaur-like creature, and some other fin-backed dinosaur-like animals.
After safely returning to and entering the Sirius, they discover a recorded desperate message from Masha saying she was going to go against her orders from Lunar Station 7 and land, to attempt to search for them....causing them anguish that she probably did not survive. But now unstable ground and a rain flood are threatening the Sirius, so they must take off immediately, leaving behind several unloaded supply cases. During the rush, Alyosha discovers that his strange rock has crumbled apart to reveal a small sculpture....of a beautiful woman's face, proving there is intelligent life on Venus. He starts shouting to the others aboard about what he's found as they hurriedly pull him in. They quickly launch off, just before the ground begins to break apart. Rising into space, they suddenly regain radio-contact from Masha, who tells them she finally decided to remain in orbit for them, as she was ordered to. The Sirius then proceeds to safely return to Lunar Station 7.
- Vladimir Yemelyanov as Ilya Vasilyevich Vershinin
- Georgiy Zhzhonov as Roman Bobrov
- Gennadi Vernov as Alyosha
- Yuri Sarantsev as Ivan Shcherba
- Georgi Teich as Allan Kern
- Kyunna Ignatova as Masha Ivanova
- Boris Prudkovsky[Note 1] as Robot John
- Z. Anderson as Production Director
- Vladimir Yemelyanov and L. Presnyakova as Producers
- A.V. Markov, K.K. Flyorov, V.G. Denisov, and A.M. Kasatkin as Scientific Advisors
- M. Tsybasov and V. Alexandrov as Production Designers
- I. Yegorov, V. Makarov, V. Malakhieva and A. Nadezhdin as Art Directors
- V. Shchelkov as Special Effects Art Director
- A. Klimov as Director of Photography
- A. Lavrentyev as Special Effects Director of Photography
- R. Levitina as Sound Recordist
- A. Belyavskaya and I. Yasnopolskaya as Assistant Directors
- V. Suslov as Film Editor
- Johann Admoni and Alexei Chernov as Music Composers
In 1965, American film producer Roger Corman gained access to the Soviet film footage and hired film student Curtis Harrington to prepare it for an American release. Harrington added several American-made scenes starring Basil Rathbone and Faith Domergue, which replaced scenes of two of the Russian cast, and dubbed the dialogue to English. The resulting film, re-titled Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet, went directly to television from American International Pictures. In the cast and credits, the Russian actors’ names were replaced with fake non-Russian names; for example, the famous Russian actor Georgiy Zhzhonov was credited as "Kurt Boden".
In 1968 American film director Peter Bogdanovich (under the name Derek Thomas) was hired by Corman to create a 2nd, different American version, re-titled to Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women, to which was added new scenes with American actress Mamie Van Doren and several other attractive women as venusians (wearing shell brassieres). Also included were some minor scenes from another Russian SF film, Mikhail Karyukov's Nebo Zovyot. This 2nd Americanized version is essentially the same as Corman's first version, but retold with a parallel viewpoint of the telepathic Venusian women, whose god (a large pterosaur-like flying creature) is killed by the Earth men, and includes an ending with an ironic twist -the Venusian women find a new god to worship- the now eroded and non-functional robot John. Corman's 2nd version may have had some limited theatrical release on the drive-in circuits in the American south, but primarily became a "TV movie" through American International Television.
In a retrospective on Soviet science fiction film, British director Alex Cox remarked that "in its final minutes, Planet of Storms takes an extraordinary turn. ... I shall not spoil the secret, but it's worth the wait."
- 1964 USSR freestyle wrestling champion.
- Евгений Харитонов. Космическая одиссея Павла Клушанцева
- Meehan, Paul (1998). A UFOlogical History of the Cinema (illustrated ed.). Southampton: Scarecrow Press. ISBN 9780810835733.
- Miller, Thomas Kent (2016). Mars in the Movies: A History (illustrated ed.). McFarland: Scarecrow Press. ISBN 9780786499144.
- Cox, Alex (June 30, 2011). "Rockets from Russia: great Eastern Bloc science-fiction films". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved August 22, 2016.