WriterLou Rusoff, Larry Buchanan Release date1966 (1966) GenresHorror, Science Fiction, B movie CastJohn Agar (Dr. Curt Taylor), Susan Bjurman (Martha Ritchie), Neil Fletcher (General Matt Young), Andrew Traister (Sgt. Magalar), Warren Hammack (John, Rocket Scientist at Zone 6), Jonathan Ledford (Zone 6 Gate Guard) Similar moviesSanto and Blue Demon vs. Dracula and the Wolf Man, Santo and the Vengeance of the Mummy, Raiders!, Fanarchy, Santo and Blue Demon Against the Monsters, Santo in the Revenge of the Crying Woman
Zontar, the Thing from Venus also known as Zontar: The Invader from Venus is a 1966, made for television, science fiction film, directed by Larry Buchanan and based on the teleplay by Hillman Taylor and Buchanan. It is a low-budget color 16mm remake of Roger Corman's It Conquered the World (1956) which also featured an alien invader from Venus.
At a dinner party with their wives, NASA scientist Dr. Keith Ritchie (Tony Huston) reveals to his colleague Dr. Curt Taylor (John Agar) that he has secretly been in communication with a three-eyed, bat-winged alien from Venus named Zontar who he claims is coming to Earth to solve all of the world's problems. However, as soon as Zontar arrives on Earth via a fallen laser satellite it quickly becomes obvious that the skeletal black creature has a hidden agenda as it begins causing local power outages that stop telephones, automobiles and even running water from working and it starts taking control of people's minds using flying lobster-like "injecto-pods" that sprout from its wings. Only after his wife is killed does Ritchie finally realize that Zontar has come not as a savior but as a conqueror, and he goes to confront the hideous alien in the sulfur spring-heated cave that it has made its secret base.
In a review for AllMovie, Paul Gaita wrote "For experienced cult movie watchers, Zontar is the cinematic equivalent of a car accident -- an unpleasant spectacle from which one cannot look away." Chris Eggerston of Bloody Disgusting criticized the alien in the film for resembling "a human-sized shit-monster with wings," but felt that it looked better than the alien from It Conquered the World.