As is the case with every movie that was a part of the early 80s 3D fad – along with the likes of Friday the 13th Part III, Amityville 3-D and Metalstorm – Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone is also best viewed in plain 2D as the 3D effect is really nothing to write to home about. When viewed in 2D the movie suffers from the usual soft transfer introduced by the stereo technology, but could very well pass as a real movie as it doesn’t push the obvious 3D scenes too hard.
This is the type of sci-fi movie that’s shot in a desert in Utah with some cars and motorcycles sloppily modified unrecognizable, and then tries to pass all this as some futuristic alien planet — a tired and lazy approach which I tend to loathe, and Spacehunter is no exception here. The set design follows the same design philosophy and although it seems a lot of work has been put in the setup, the end result is completely missing a clear vision and everything just looks like incomprehensive mess composed of random hanging wires and blinking lights.
Peter Strauss makes for a passable rogue – obviously straight out of the Han Solo mould – that may not be that memorable but still manages to outperformance the movie. Young Molly Ringwald is even more whinier than usually, but still very endearing as the feisty and mouthy orphan Niki.