This is a long shot.

I would like to find an old black and white science fiction movie that I saw on TV.

The one scene that has stuck in my mind was of a spaceship launching its fighter ships in response to an incoming attack. Sort of like the Galactica launching Vipers when the Cylons attack.

The twist is that the launch mechanism looks for all the world like the cylinder of a revolver, with the fighter ships in the chambers.

Seriously. A spaceship with one of these things sticking out of the side, with a single, foward facing snout like the barrel of a gun:

enter image description here

Image from the Wikipedia "cylinder" page.

You could see the fighter ships in the chambers. After launching a fighter, the cylinder rotated to move the next fighter into launch position.

I don't remember anything else about the movie except that it was really cheesy. Think "B" movie, full of cliches.

I saw it on TV in about 1981, in Tyler, Texas. One of the TV stations there ran really cheesy movies on Saturday afternoons. Sometimes they ran kung-fu chop 'em up movies (crummy stories, worse acting, and even worse English dubbing.) Other times they ran really bad science-fiction action "B" movies from the 1950s. My brother and I watched them together sometimes and laughed ourselves silly over how bad they were.

I'd like to find this movie again to see if it really as bad as my memory says it was.

I am stonkered. There is another movie that used a revolver launcher.

The movie described in the two current answers (The War in Space) is unfortunately not it.

  1. The movie I saw was black and white. The War in Space was in color.
  2. The movie I saw "fired" the fighter ships through a short "snout" at the front of the ship. In The War in Space, the fighters launch straight from the chamber - no "barrel" of any kind.
  3. In the movie I saw, the cylinder rotated counter-clockwise and you could see the other fighters in the other chambers before each launch. In The War in Space, the cylinder rotates clockwise. The fighters are only visible at launch - you never see more than one "chambered" like in the movie I am looking for.
  • 6
    +1 for the first sentence alone. Aside - confirming that you had a colour TV in 1981?
    – Criggie
    Jul 19, 2021 at 2:16
  • 2
    @Criggie: Yes, we had a color TV in 1981.
    – JRE
    Jul 19, 2021 at 5:36
  • 1
    I was thinking about Voyage Dans la Lune (1902), In that the ship is basically just a large bullet, though fired out of a cannon on Earth and not a revolver-shaped mothership. Does show that the "spaceship as bullet" motif goes waaay back though... Jul 19, 2021 at 15:42

1 Answer 1


The War in Space (1977)

The mothership launches fighter out of what looks like a giant revolver.

enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here

  • 9
    That is impressive. You've found another movie that uses a revolver to launch fighter ships. The one I am looking for was in black and white, and there were differences in the way the launcher operated. I've described that in more detail in the question. I had no idea that I'd have to provide details to distinguish between multiple movies with the same type of launcher.
    – JRE
    Jul 18, 2021 at 15:28
  • 3
    @JRE, I'm not. I've got vague memories of what's got to be a third movie that uses exactly the same launch technique.
    – Mark
    Jul 18, 2021 at 20:31
  • The commentary on the plausibility/intelligence of such a system is interesting but was getting a bit long and is pretty much tangential to the question/answer. I've moved this conversation to chat, feel free to continue your discussion there.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Jul 20, 2021 at 11:33

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