- 1 hr 29 min
Nightflyers is a science fiction movie from 1987, directed by Robert Collector and based on the novella of the same name by George R.R. Martin. The film tells the story of a crew of scientists and telepaths on board the spaceship Nightflyer, who set out on a dangerous mission to make contact with an alien race. The movie begins on Earth in the distant future, where a group of telepaths are being hunted down and persecuted by a government that fears their powers. One of the telepaths, Royd Eris (played by Michael Praed), is a gifted researcher who has been working on a project to make contact with an alien race known as the Volcryn. He is approached by a wealthy eccentric, Darryl Revok (played by John Standing), who offers to fund Royd's research in exchange for a place on his expedition to meet the Volcryn.
Royd agrees to Revok's offer and assembles a crew of scientists and telepaths to board the Nightflyer, a futuristic spaceship equipped with advanced technology and a virtual reality room. The crew includes Miranda Dorlac (played by Catherine Mary Stewart), the ship's pilot and Royd's former lover; Melantha Jhirl (played by Lisa Blount), a genetically-engineered human with superhuman abilities; and thug Harry Vroman (played by James Avery), who is hired as muscle.
The crew sets out on their mission, but soon begin to experience strange occurrences and unexplained phenomena. They begin to see hallucinations and experience terrifying nightmares, and it becomes clear that there is something wrong with the Nightflyer. As they get closer to the location of the Volcryn, the crew begins to suspect that one of them might be responsible for the strange events on board the ship.
Nightflyers is a tense and eerie sci-fi thriller that combines elements of horror, mystery and psychological drama. The film is notable for its atmospheric visuals and unsettling score, as well as its strong ensemble cast. Catherine Mary Stewart is particularly effective as Miranda Dorlac, a scientist who becomes increasingly disturbed by the events on board the Nightflyer. Michael Praed also delivers a solid performance as Royd Eris, a man with a troubled past and a hidden agenda.
The film's plot is somewhat predictable, with a number of plot twists and reveals that can be seen from a mile away. However, the movie's production design and special effects are impressive for a low-budget sci-fi film from the 1980s. The spaceship Nightflyer itself is a memorable creation, with its sleek metallic design and otherworldly interiors. The use of the virtual reality room is also an interesting plot device, allowing the characters to explore their own psyche and uncover dark secrets.
Overall, Nightflyers is a solid sci-fi thriller that is worth checking out for fans of the genre. While it may not be a classic of the genre, it offers a unique and unsettling take on the traditional space exploration story. The film's themes of telepathy and the dangers of technology resonate today more than ever, making it a timely reminder of the potential pitfalls of human progress.