Monday, April 29, 2013

Chiller Classics Presents: Night of the Creeps (1986)

There are a few different cover images, but this is the one I knew growing up.

Hello everyone.  Thought you could escape the month of April without hearing from Ken Bucklesworth, huh?  Well you thought wrong!!!!  Haha, I kid.  I'm sorry I haven't been around lately.  April hasn't been a good month for me reviewing wise.  I've either had a ton of real world distractions, or I've been feeling like crap, and both conspired to keep me away for much longer than expected.  But no longer!!  I'm finally back to talk about one of my favorite horror movies from one of my favorite decades for horror, the 80s.

Night of the Creeps was released in 1986, and was directed by Fred Dekker.  Dekker's directing history is in my opinion a tragic story. He was responsible for two of the most underrated movies of the 80s, Night of the Creeps and Monster Squad (he also directed Robocop 3, but we won't talk about that one).
Both movies bombed box-office wise, and after Robocop 3 he just gave up directing.  I truly hope that someday he'll realize how much his movies are loved today and he'll make a triumphant return to directing.  In the meantime, let's get into NotC.

The plot is sort of a weird one: on an alien ship somewhere in space, a rebel alien (maybe?) has stolen an experimental life form contained in a metallic tube and jettisons it out into space.  Why did the alien jettison it?  Who was this alien and why was he going against his alien fellows?  These are questions you should just purge from your mind immediately.  Not only are they never addressed, you never see the aliens again.  At least, not in the theatrical version.

Do these tattered rags make me look fat?

We then go to Earth in 1959.  The tube crashes in the forest near a popular makeout spot, in a scene very reminiscent of how the Blob arrives on Earth.  A couple immediately drive after it and manages to find it, but unfortunately the life form, which resembles a giant slug, enters his body through his mouth.  His girlfriend, who is waiting for him in the car, gets the business end of a fire axe from a local serial killer, and is found by her ex, officer Ray Cameron.  That's a bad night all around.

Fast forward to 1986, where we have our main protagonists Chris and J.C. (no not Jesus Christ, and no not John Carpenter), two college freshmen wondering when and how they will get some lady's attention.  Chris sees college beauty Cynthia and falls immediately for her.  He eventually decides that to win her over, he needs to join a frat, preferably the Betas.  The head of the frat (who it turns out is the boyfriend of Cynthia), gives them a challenge: get hold of a corpse and plant it in front of one of the other frat houses.  Chris and J.C. find the cryogenically frozen body of the boyfriend infected by the alien slug and release him from the cryo chamber.  The body twitches, scaring the crap out of our two heroes and they run away.  The body revives and it walks out, freeing the alien slugs (they had reproduced sometime in the 30 year span of time).  The slugs then begin taking over more and more bodies.  Will they be stopped in time for the college formal?

Cold kitty, dead kitty, bloody ball of fur......

I'll be perfectly blunt: I love this movie.  Night of the Creeps is 80s B-movie gold, and if you haven't seen it, shame on you.  It's got great acting (especially from one of my all time fav B-movie actors Tom Atkins), very good practical effects, and just the right amount of cheese you want from a movie about alien worms that invade and take over your body.  It was released on Blu-Ray with a ton of extra features, including an alternate ending, and the picture quality is just amazing.  I strongly recommend if you do watch it, do it in the full Blu-Ray glory that it deserves to be watched in.  Oh, and when you're watching, listen closely when people's names are said, and see if you notice anything interesting about them.  Sayonara.

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
B-Movie Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

- Ken Bucklesworth, signing off.

Twitter: @BoonsBuckles, @KenBucklesworth, @Tallwhitefox

1 comment:

wickedknitter said...

Gotta comment, just for your rewrite of the Kitty Song from whatever bad sitcom show: love! Also really like this movie too - made me think the tiniest bit of Ferris Beuhler's Day Off for some reason :)