Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964) - Rotten Tomatoes

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians1964

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964)




Critic Consensus: The endearingly cheesy Santa Claus Conquers the Martians might just be so naughty it's nice for viewers seeking a sub-competent sci-fi holiday adventure.

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Movie Info

The biggest, most brightly-wrapped gift under the colorful Christmas tree is a new digital restoration of the unforgettable 1964 B-movie Santa Claus Conquers the Martians, best known as the screen debut of actress/singer Pia Zadora. Martians come to Earth to kidnap Santa Claus because there is no one on Mars to give their children presents. Earth kids Billy and Betty set out to save Santa and return him to Earth. The film is a baffling mixture of sci-fi, Christmas cheer and childish slapstick, all filmed in garish (or as the poster says, "Space-Blazing") color. See all this, a bouncing ball "Jingle Bells" sing-along and much more, mastered from the best surviving prints!

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John Call
as Santa Claus
Pia Zadora
as Girmar
Carl Don
as Von Green/Chochem
Al Nesor
as Stobo
Josip Elic
as Shim/Torg
Doris Rich
as Mrs. Claus
Ned Wertimer
as Andy Henderson
Lin Thurmond
as Children's Announcer
Don Blair
as News Announcer
Gene Lindsey
as Polar Bear
Glenn Schaffer
as Santa's Helper
Ronald Rotholz
as Santa's Helper
Tony Ross
as Santa's Helper
Scott Aronesty
as Santa's Helper
View All

News & Interviews for Santa Claus Conquers the Martians

Critic Reviews for Santa Claus Conquers the Martians

All Critics (23) | Top Critics (4)

There's no warmth to the movie, no good cheer or happiness, and (at risk of bathing in bathos), ne'er a hint of what makes the season special.

December 10, 2016 | Full Review…

[A] hilariously bad stab at sci-fi.

June 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Adults may find it obvious and as square-cut as cheese. But let's face it. From now till you-know-when, the youngsters are all that matter.

May 9, 2005 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

The plot, such as it is, proves it is possible to insult the intelligence of a three-year-old.

June 13, 2001 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Its status as one of the strangest films ever made about Father Christmas has given it a degree of cult status. Without that, it wouldn't have a snowball's chance of still being watched today.

December 17, 2020 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…

For those with a taste for bad movies, especially unintentionally hilarious ones that take themselves completely seriously, you can't do much better than this.

August 6, 2019 | Rating: 0/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Santa Claus Conquers the Martians

A cult Christmas classic, "Santa Claus Conquers the Martians" concerns Martians and their selfish, perturbed children who have no fun and hope that Santa's goodwill will come to their planet. The Martians come to Earth, kidnap some kids, then Santa, and take them back to their planet. Some of the Martians dislike the idea of letting Santa on their planet, and plot to kill him and the children, but are thwarted time and again. The film isn't inherently bad: it has a logical plot, the performances aren't all that bad, and it's message of letting kids have fun is inspiring. The reason it's so ridiculous is the premise itself. That and the costuming is horrible, like, ridiculously bad. The Martians are all in green-face, the elves are all dwarves, and the Martian children look and sound like practiced wind-up dolls. While this isn't the best bad movie it's rather entertaining and fun for the entire family, even with its constant plot device of children killing alien life forms.

Spencer S.
Spencer S.

Super Reviewer

I just happened to catch this movie on TV the other night, unfortunately. It's got an interesting story, which may have been the inspiration for Disney's new movie Mars Needs Moms, because in this movie the kids of mars need a Santa. This movie is complete cheese, with bad actors, dialogue, special effects, directing, the works! An interesting bad movie, though.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

In the right company and with loads of "adult" beverages, this one could be a scream. But watch it alone and you'd wish you were dead just to escape a world that would allow crap like this to be produced.

Cindy I
Cindy I

Super Reviewer

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