4

I am looking for a movie I saw on television when I was a young kid in the early 1990s. I saw it dubbed into Czech, but I am fairly certain it was produced in the United States. Judging by the visuals, I would place the movie in the early 1980s or even the 1970s.

To be honest, my memories of the movie are foggy at best, but I vividly remember the nightmares it induced in me. I would love to have the opportunity to rewatch the movie, because what I remember seems quite intriguing for my adult self.

Here are the details I remember:

  • The whole story takes place aboard a space ship. The ship makes a stop near a black hole, presumably to explore it.
  • There is a villain who is either an intelligent robot, a cyborg, or a man with metallic claws instead of hands. He is fairly intelligent.
  • The villain is initially trusted by the crew of the ship, but later turns on them using his own army of goons.
  • The heroes believe that the only way to defeat him is by escaping through the black hole. I remember them discussing whether it is possible, unsure whether it actually leads somewhere or not, but eventually agree (or are forced to) to risk it.
  • The ship is destroyed in the process.
  • In the end it is shown that the villain survived and started a settlement on a reddish, uninhabitable planet (or maybe even inside the black hole?) where he is worshipped by his goons.

I am not sure which of those details were fabricated by my dreaming subconsciousness, but if something rings a bell for you, I would be thankful for suggestions.

2
  • 1
    Your question has been marked as a Duplicate. That doesn't mean it's a bad question, just one we've answered before. You will still get points for upvotes.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Jul 28, 2023 at 17:41
  • 1
    Incidentally, it's generally bad form to edit your question with thanks. You can always leave a comment on answers to questions that you have asked.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Jul 28, 2023 at 17:42

2 Answers 2

7

This is Disney's The Black Hole (1979).

The ending with the scientist adrift in a reddish landscape is fairly iconic.

4

This really sounds like the 1979 Disney file The Black Hole, especially the ending you describe. Quoting from the plot summary on Wikipedia:

The spacecraft USS Palomino has nearly completed its mission exploring deep space. The crew consists of Captain Dan Holland, First Officer Lieutenant Charlie Pizer, journalist Harry Booth, ESP-sensitive scientist Dr. Kate McCrae, the expedition's civilian leader Dr. Alex Durant and the diminutive robot V.I.N.CENT. ("Vital Information Necessary CENTralized").

As it is returning to Earth, the Palomino discovers a black hole with the apparently abandoned and long-lost USS Cygnus nearby, the same ship that McCrae's father was aboard when it vanished 20 years ago. (Cygnus X-1 is the first-known black hole, discovered in 1964, after which this scientific vessel is presumably named.) The Palomino decide to investigate and finds that there is a mysterious null gravity field surrounding the Cygnus that allows it to defy the massive gravitational pull of the black hole. The Palomino briefly strays outside the field and is damaged by the intense gravity, forcing it to emergency dock with the Cygnus, which no longer appears abandoned.

The cautious Palomino crew soon encounter Dr. Hans Reinhardt (one of Earth's most brilliant scientists, according to Durant). Reinhardt explains he has been alone on the Cygnus since it encountered a meteor field and was disabled. He ordered the human crew to return to Earth without him, but Kate's father chose to remain aboard and has since died. To replace the crew, Reinhardt built faceless, black-robed drones, sentry robots and his sinister bodyguard robot, Maximilian. Reinhardt says he intends to fly the Cygnus through the black hole because 20 years of study has shown that it's possible. Only an enamoured Durant believes him and asks if he can accompany Reinhardt.

However, the rest of the Palomino crew start to become suspicious of Reinhardt. Booth sees a drone limping, while Holland witnesses an android funeral and discovers personal items in the Cygnus crew quarters. V.I.N.CENT. meets a battered earlier model of his type named BO.B. ("BiO-sanitation Battalion"). BO.B explains the drones are actually what's left of the human crew, who mutinied when Reinhardt refused to return to Earth after the Cygnus was damaged. McCrae's father was killed leading the mutiny, and the crew was lobotomized and "reprogrammed" to serve Reinhardt. V.I.N.CENT. uses telepathy to tell Kate. After she informs Durant what really happened, he removes a drone's faceplate, revealing the zombie-like face of a crew member. Durant tries to flee with Kate, but is killed by Maximilian.

Reinhardt orders his robots to lobotomize Kate, but just as the process begins, she is rescued by Holland, V.I.N.CENT. and BO.B. Harry Booth tries to escape alone in the Palomino, but is shot down and fatally crashes into the Cygnus. A subsequent meteor storm and the explosion of the ship's overstressed main power plant cause the anti-gravity generator to fail. Without its null-gravity bubble, the Cygnus quickly starts to break apart under the black hole's huge gravitational forces.

Reinhardt and the Palomino survivors separately plan their escape in the probe ship used to study the black hole. Reinhardt orders Maximilian to prepare the ship for launch, but then a large viewscreen falls on Reinhardt, pinning him to the deck. His cries for help aren't acknowledged by the lobotimized crew nor Maximilian, who ignores his master and pursues the Palomino crew as they attempt to escape.

Meanwhile, the crew near the probe ship before being confronted again by Maximilian. He fatally damages BO.B. before battling with V.I.N.CENT as McCrae, Holland and Pizer continue to the probe. V.I.N.CENT defeats his opponent by drilling into Maximilian's armor, disabling his system and sending him hurtling into the black hole. Holland, Pizer, McCrae and V.I.N.CENT. launch the probe, which they soon realize has a pre-programmed flight path, taking them directly into the black hole.

Within the black hole, the Cygnus completely breaks apart. The drifting Reinhardt and Maximilian merge together above a burning, hellish landscape populated by dark-robed spectres resembling Cygnus drones. Meanwhile, the probe ship is led through a cathedral-like arched crystal tunnel by a floating, angelic figure. After the ship emerges from a white hole, Holland, Pizer, McCrae and V.I.N.CENT. fly towards a planet near a bright star.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.