Make Your Picks

80's Trash from the Future

→ in
Tools    





Warning...This thread was previously banned in over eighty countries around the world for it's graphic images of gore and violence that many people found disturbing...

Now...for the first time on Movie Forums the authorities have seen fit to pass 80's Trash from the Future fully uncut for your viewing pleasure.
..

If you are easily offended or of a nervous disposition then please proceed with extreme caution...and remember...it's only a movie review...it's only a movie review...it's only a movie review...

80's Trash from the Future


In this thread I'm going to be reviewing low budget horror/sci-fi films mainly from the 1980's. It seems like only yesterday that I was down the video shop mesmerized by those gaudy big box rental tapes, only to be disappointed by the inevitably crappy movies they contained. Still, with that said I have a huge fondness for the genre, some of them remaining favourites to this day. Please also note that I'm not reviewing these films from distorted teenage memory. All the titles reviewed here I either own on dvd/vhs or have seen in the last five years. I will also try and watch them again before each review.

* There is a two tier rating system in place for the films, the first is an objective rating, for serious film fans. Additionally there is my self indulgent trash entertainment rating, based on cult cheese appeal and all round lowbrow cool.

Contents

Page One
Contamination (1980)
Trash rating

Cherry 2000 (1987)
Trash rating

Forbidden World (1982)
Trash rating

Street Trash (1987)
Trash rating

Parasite (1982)
Trash rating

The Borrower (1989)
Trash rating

The Kindred (1987)
Trash rating

Humanoids from the Deep (1980)
Trash rating

Nightmare City (1980)
Trash rating

C.H.U.D. (1984)
Trash rating

Page Two
C.H.U.D. II: Bud the Chud (1989)
Trash rating

Neon Maniacs (1986)
Trash rating

Dead Heat (1988)
Trash rating

Creepozoids (1987)
Trash rating

Turkey Shoot (1982)
Trash rating


Page Three
The Blob (1988)
Trash rating

The Deadly Spawn (1983)
Trash rating

Bronx Warriors (1982)
Trash rating
Bronx Warriors 2 (1983)
Trash rating

Creature (1985)
Trash rating

Page Four
Brain Damage (1988)
Trash rating

TerrorVision (1986)
Trash rating

Slugs (1988)
Trash rating

Night of the Comet (1984)
Trash rating

Xtro (1982)
Trash rating

Inseminoid (1981)
Trash rating


Page Five
Galaxina (1980)
Trash rating

Galaxy of Terror (1981)
Trash rating

2019: After the Fall of New York (1983)
+ Trash Rating


Page Six
Scarecrows (1988)
Trash rating
+
Cannibal Apocalypse (1980)
+ Trash rating

Hell Comes to Frogtown (1987)
- Trash rating


Page 7
Blood Diner (1987)
Trash rating
+
Dead End Drive-In (1986)
+ Trash rating
+
The Beast Within (1982)
Trash rating


Page 8
Rats: Night of Terror (1984)
Trash rating
+
Night of the Creeps (1986)
- Trash rating


Page 9

Motel Hell (1980)
Trash rating

Chopping Mall (1986)
Trash rating




A system of cells interlinked
Bring it!

This should be good....
__________________
"There’s absolutely no doubt you can be slightly better tomorrow than you are today." - JBP





Contamination (Luigi Cozzi 1980)
Trash rating

Luigi Cozzi is an Italian director probably best known for his 1978 Star Wars knock off Starcrash. Those of you fortunate enough (or unfortunate depending on how you look at it) to have seen that movie, will know that it was laughably camp, and painfully cheap. With that said however, the film was entertaining, all be it in a 'so bad it's good' fashion, and was also notable for David Hasselhoff in one of his first film roles.

Contamination was one of the original video nasties (though it was dropped from the official DPP list in 1985) it has what appears to be an even lower budget than Starcrash, and like Cozzi's former flick, is yet another shameless cash in (no prizes for guessing which movie). The story begins with an unmanned cargo ship drifting into the New York harbor (an opening stolen from Lucio Fulci's Zombi 2). On boarding investigators discover the hold filled with boxes of green eggs oozing slime that if touched, results in a rather nasty chest explosion. Enter cocky New York cop Tony Aris (Marino Mase) and ice maiden Colonel Stella Holmes (Louise Marleau). They recruit washed up alcoholic
Commander Ian Hubbard (Italian horror favourite Ian McCulloch), who claims to have seen the eggs before on an ill fated mission to Mars; together they trace the ships origin to South America. Off they go to the jungle where they discover a coffee factory manned by James Bond style henchmen, and a hilarious alien cyclops laying the yucky eggs.





Contamination
is painfully cheap, Cozzi has since admitted that shots of a police helicopter in the films intro were just filmed on the hoof in New York. Yup, that's right he just shot a helicopter flying overhead and over dubbed actors voices for the pilots (pretty clever really). The makeup effects though, aren't half bad, particularly the slow motion exploding chests which are really quite satisfying. Contamination also features a great electronic soundtrack from cult Italian band Goblin (one of their best).

Ultimately though the film suffers from a suspect dubbing track, cheap production values, and a plainly ridiculous plot. Contamination is also a little on the slow side, despite a gore soaked opening fifteen minutes, the majority of the film is relentlessly talky. It does have an entertaining climax, but you'd be forgiven for giving up half way through, unless you like this sort of thing. This is a film best enjoyed with a group of like-minded friends, and lots of beer (that you've already consumed). It's hilariously crappy, but despite my low rating, I have a real soft spot for the film (it's actually one of my all time favourites). I'd definitely recommend this to curious fans of the Alien films looking for some low rent fun spaghetti style; just be prepared to roll your eyes ironically now and again.






Cherry 2000
(Steve De Jarnatt 1987)
Trash rating

If the sight of Melanie Griffith with bright red hair and a shotgun isn't enough to turn you onto this movie, then let me have a try. On the surface Cherry 2000 looks like some god awful Rambo or Mad Max rip off. Whilst there may be some justification in that comparison, the post apocalyptic setting, big guns, big hair etc etc. The fact is Cherry 2000 plays nothing like those movies, and guess what, it's pretty enjoyable stuff too.

The story concerns Sam Treadwell (David Andrews) a mild mannered office jockey with a robot wife/sex object called a Cherry 2000. When his Cherry breaks (no pun intended), after the washing machine overloads (I'm not kidding), Sam removes her memory/personality disc, and looks for a replacement body. The only problem is Cherry is an obsolete model, and all the replacement bodies are in the middle of a hostile wasteland outside the city. Desperate (Sam is in love with his Cherry), he hires tom boy Edith 'E' Johnson (Melanie Griffith) a tracker who knows the location of the Cherry stash, to lead him there. The rest of the movie is their perilous journey across the desert into Zone 7, where they encounter Lester (a very funny Tim Thomerson) and his odd band of crazies. Naturally Treadwell and Johnson fall for each other, but can he ditch his beloved Cherry?



Cherry 2000 is pretty offbeat stuff that plays more like a wacky cyberpunk comedy adventure, than an action movie. It's a little slow at times, and the production values are decidedly second rate, but the film is full of ideas, and always entertaining. Griffith is the best thing about the movie though, I've always liked her kooky screen presence, and here she's really sexy and cool (especially if you're fifteen years old). Plus the chemistry between her and David Andrews is quite charming. We also get the late Brion James in a small role as a rival tracker, and Lawrence Fishburn as a futuristic lawyer. All in all this is a weird, quirky little sleeper of a b-movie, ideal as a midnight indulgence, and well worth a look. Just don't expect breath taking action scenes.



Bright light. Bright light. Uh oh.
Well, I actually saw Starcrash at the theatre(!!) and Cherry 2000 on cable about 20 years ago, but I've only seen them once, and I missed out on Contamination. From my ratings at the time and my memory, I'd give Starcrash a generous
and Cherry 2000 a
. I'm just sorry that I can't really add any details about the films. The only thing I distinctly recall about Starcrash was that it seemed like some kid decided to make his own Star Wars film, but he used Tinker Toys. Oh, and it had scantily-clad women.

__________________
It's what you learn after you know it all that counts. - John Wooden
My IMDb page



Well, I actually saw Starcrash at the theatre(!!) and Cherry 2000 on cable about 20 years ago, but I've only seen them once, and I missed out on Contamination. From my ratings at the time and my memory, I'd give Starcrash a generous
and Cherry 2000 a
. I'm just sorry that I can't really add any details about the films. The only thing I distinctly recall about Starcrash was that it seemed like some kid decided to make his own Star Wars film, but he used Tinker Toys. Oh, and it had scantily-clad women.
My dad rented me Starcrash back in the 80's as it only had a PG rating (I guess it still has). I remember thinking it was great at the time, there was a C3PO style sidekick, and even a lightsaber fight between Hasselhoff and two robots. I seem to remember a big space station that was painted in rainbow colors too.

I think your rating of Cherry 2000 is a little on the mean side though. For a cheapo movie it's pretty entertaining stuff, I have a copy on VHS.



A PHD in Whiskey and Stonerology
It's really the kind of thing that you have to be in the mood for though....

Anyway, great thread so far, Future. Looking forward to the rest






Forbidden World aka Mutant (Allan Holzman 1982)
Trash rating

Forbidden World was another product of Roger Corman's New World Pictures (Corman was the producer). It's an unofficial sequel of sorts to the 1981 film Galaxy of Terror (see my top 100), and if you've seen that one, you should have an idea of what to expect here. Yes the film is yet another bargain basement Alien clone, it has an even smaller budget than Bruce D. Clark's effort, and like the aforementioned, also recycles footage from Corman's Battle Beyond the Stars.

Jesse Vint plays Mike Colby an intergalactic troubleshooter called in to sort out a scientific experiment gone wrong on the planet Xarbia. Mike's a likable sort, with an eye for the ladies, and a cute robot sidekick that talks like it's just inhaled the entire world supply of helium. On arriving at the research center, he quickly seduces the female scientists (we get some soft porn), and takes a look at Subject 20, a disastrous attempt to genetically engineer food. Subject 20 looks like something a twelve year old might make for a school science project (i.e. an undefinable mess), but nevertheless all ensemble are terrified of it. Soon the thing evolves into a Giger-esque Alien reject (pictured top) and goes on the rampage. Eventually they isolate the pesky critter in a lab and attempt to communicate with it through a computer (in a feeble attempt to homage Close Encounters), but Subject 20 ain't very friendly. Naturally they then decide on extermination using the well known technique of feeding it a cancerous human liver and watching it vomit to death (I kid you not).



I love cheesy Alien rip offs, there were a whole slew of them back in the early 80's, and after Galaxy of Terror this is one of the best. The cast featuring the likes of Linden Chiles as Dr. Hauser, and June Chadwick as Dr. Glaser, are all delightfully hammy, and provide plenty of ironic laughs. There's also some gore, plenty of goo, and an amusingly hokey monster. Your enjoyment of this movie however, will completely depend on your tolerance for micro budgeted trash, as the direction and effects on show are laughable. That doesn't mean it's boring though, far from it. Forbidden World doesn't try to be anything other than a tongue in cheek b-movie, and with Corman producing (a man who knew the genre inside out) it delivers on its tacky premise. If you like cheapo early 80's sci-fi, and can manage to get hold of a copy chances are you'll enjoy this one.






Street Trash (J. Michael Muro 1987)
Trash rating

Street Trash isn't easily definable by genre, it's neither a straight horror movie, nor is it science fiction. The old 80's vhs cover proudly proclaims that Street Trash is in fact a 'melt movie', hardly a prolific sub genre of film. I can only think of two other examples, namely William Sachs's 1977 crapfest The Incredible Melting Man, and Philip Brophy's yawn worthy 1993 effort Body Melt. Street Trash is certainly better than those films, but that's hardly a stellar recommendation, so let me elaborate.


The plot (what there is of it) concerns a group of bums who live in a scrap yard and their generally depraved day to day activities. These include shop lifting, beating each other up, and of course drinking themselves to death. When Ed the local shopkeeper finds an old crate of liquor called 'Tenafly Viper' behind a wall in his basement, he knocks the stuff out to the bums for one buck a bottle. Only problem is the stuff is incredibly toxic and melts whoever drinks it into a pile of colorful slime. Naturally he doesn't get many repeat customers, and when bums start turning up dead, enter Bill the cop (yup that's his name) to investigate. Bill is nastier than the bums, and makes Dirty Harry look like Snow White. Anyone who gets in his way (including the local mobsters) get beaten up, and in one scene, vomited on in a public toilet. Thing is, Bill isn't the only bad dude on the block, as the bums are led by Bronson, a thoroughly repellent Vietnam Vet with a knife carved from a human femur, and a girlfriend to give you nightmares.



Street Trash is probably the most disgusting, grimy, depraved film I've ever seen, you simply must watch it. It's a real fringe piece, and doesn't pull any punches in the bad taste department. We get everything here from a man playing piggy in the middle after his penis is ripped off, to necrophilia, gang rape, gore, and of course melting bums. All the leads in the movie are terrible, but the support from the likes of Tony Darrow as Nick Duran the local mob boss, Vic Noto as Bronson, and James Lorinz as an obnoxious doorman are all rather good. The makeup effects are above average too, as vagrants by turns melt and explode in vivid rainbows of slimy goo. Jim Muro's camera work verges on the virtuoso at times and is often reminiscent of Sam Raimi's The Evil Dead. It's also worth noting that James Cameron went on to employ him as a cameraman for Terminator 2 and True Lies. Street Trash is an underground favourite amongst gore aficionados and fans of extreme cinema. They simply don't make films like this anymore, so if you like bad taste gore trash and haven't seen it, then I highly recommend picking up the R1 special edition dvd. I guarantee, good or bad, it'll be an experience you wont forget in a hurry. Oh, and the closing credits are hilarious.






Parasite (Charles Band 1982)
Trash rating

Oh dear, oh dear oh dear oh dear. Parasite is another early 80's Mad Max/Alien rip off originally shown in 3-D, and notable only for Demi Moore in her first starring role. It's a Charles Band flick, the man behind Empire and Full Moon pictures, which in turn made franchises like The Puppet Master and Trancers films. Band has become something of a cult figure over the years, kind of a latter day Roger Corman, his output (mainly as a producer) has been prolific, sometimes fun, but often substandard. Parasite was Band's third directorial effort, and has a microscopic budget, that fact that it's bad goes without saying, every film in this thread is bad. No Parasite is worse than bad, it stinks, it's slow, it's boring, and perhaps most unforgivably for this kind of movie, contains very little gore, and no nudity.

Set in post nuke America circa 1992, the story starts off in a scientific laboratory (possibly Charles Band's garage) where Dr. Paul Dean (Robert Glaudini) sets about fleeing evil government officials. Paul's been busy breeding parasites for biological warfare, and realizing the error of his ways, escapes with one growing inside him, and another in a canister. Off he goes to hide in the best place imaginable, yup a small California desert town. There he sets about trying to remove his parasite, but manages to fall out with the local gang of mullet wearing punks instead. Before you can say Parasite city, said punks open the canister, unleashing one of the critters. There's also a 'merchant' (government agent) on Paul's ass, who not only wants the parasites, but also drives a Lamborghini Countach (what a badass) and has a rather duff looking lightsabre that he likes to wave around. Luckily Paul has befriended Patricia Wells (Demi Moore) a cute farmer who doesn't take any crap. She helps him find a cure for his unwelcome guest, and deals with the thugs.



On its release Parasite's main selling point was the 3-D, and a scene in which a parasite bursts through Vivian Blaine's face leaping off the screen. Seen as that's lost on video, then there's really nothing to recommend this movie. Unless you're a Demi Moore/Charles Band completist, or just a masochist who gets off on boredom then I'd steer well clear. I usually love post apocalyptic trash, but here it's rendered so unconvincingly (not a matte painting or model in sight) that you'd swear they didn't even try. Stan Winston was apparently head of the makeup department for the film, but his influence is nowhere to be seen, because the makeups are rubbish. The fact that Parasite is played completely straight is just the final nail in the coffin. Avoid.






The Borrower (John McNaughton 1989)
Trash rating

This was McNaughton's follow up to his now infamous Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. The film was completed in 1989 but due to distribution issues, wasn't released until 1991. It had a brief theatrical run in the US before hitting the video shelves, and disappearing into obscurity. It's always struck me as strange that after such a powerfully disturbing film, McNaughton went on to make what on the surface appears to be a hokey slice of sci-fi, so is it any good?

The film is about an insectoid alien criminal that gets sentenced to a life on earth in human form as punishment. As if that wasn't bad enough it also turns out his alien biology isn't compatible with homo sapiens, causing his heads to intermittently explode. Naturally this sets him on a constant hunt for new noggins, leaving a trail of bodies in his wake. Enter detective Diana Pierce (Rae Dawn Chong) who whilst on the trail of another serial killer, miraculously manages to piece it all together. As expected she has a hard job convincing her colleagues, that is until the two cases collide.



Although clearly daft, The Borrower is a surprisingly enjoyable romp, full of black humor, and offbeat characters. The story is derivative of Jack Sholder's 1987 flick The Hidden, but McNaughton injects some visual style and decent twists to keep things interesting. Gore fans wont be left disappointed either, there's certainly plenty of claret flying around, though sometimes Kevin Yagher's makeups are decidedly substandard. This is most apparent when the alien switches heads, as his body seems to change along with them. The cast are interesting though, not least Antonio Fargas (best known for playing Huggy Bear in TV's Starsky and Hutch) who falls victim to the head swapping. The film also has a cracking opening electrofunk style theme tune that really sets the tone. All in all this is a passable b-movie, that suffers from one false climax too many. Genre fans will no doubt enjoy it, but it's certainly not the best of its type.







The Kindred (Stephen Carpenter & Jeffrey Obrow 1987)
Trash rating

The Kindred is Carpenter and Obrow's third directorial feature, the previous two (which I thankfully haven't seen) being the 1984 possession flick The Power, and 1981 generic slasher The Dorm that Dripped Blood. Neither have done anything particularly noteworthy since, unless you count Carpenter's forgettable 2001 teen horror Soul Survivors starring Casey Affleck. The Kindred on the other hand is a rather good homage to old 1950's monster movies, with a decent cast.

The plot kicks off with a body snatching scene, followed by elderly scientist (Kim Hunter) on her hospital death bed, who tells her son John (David Allen Brooks) to destroy her genetic research. Much to John's horror, she also tells him that he has a brother called Anthony, who she kept a secret. John then bumps into the mysterious Melissa (the lovely Amanda Pays) also a scientist, who persuades him to let her join him in examining his mother's research. The two head off to his mother's house with some of John's friends, where Anthony (the slimy result of gene splicing man and fish) lays wait. Hot on their trail is the sinister Dr. Lloyd (Rod Steiger) who wants to capture Anthony and use him to further his own evil experiments.



The Kindred is a lot of fun, and has some pretty good scares, especially the scene in which Dr. Lloyd locks a potential blackmailer in a dark basement with homicidal mutants. The likable cast (most of whom play it completely straight) are all great for this kind of fare, particularly Steiger (though his wig is hilarious). Plus Tammy Grimaldo and Matthew W. Mungle's makeups are often impressive, not least the human to fish transformation sequence. To sum up this is underrated stuff that no doubt plays a lot better now that it did back in the 80's. If you enjoyed Stuart Gordon's From Beyond, or just like monster movies in general, then you could do a lot worse than The Kindred.






Humanoids from the Deep aka Monster (Barbara Peters 1980)
Trash rating

Another product of Roger Corman's New World Pictures, Humanoids from the Deep was part of a wave of Jaws cash-ins stretching from the mid 70's into the early 80's. These included Joe Dante's Piranha (1978), Lewis Teague's Alligator (1980), Jeffrey Bloom's Blood Beach (1981), and most unforgivably, Ovidio Assonitis's (as Oliver Hellman) Tentacles (1976). Humanoids also plays on the psycho sexual horror sub themes explored in Ridley Scott's Alien, though it does this with a complete lack of subtlety (sometimes sickeningly so). Not surprisingly the film sparked a media controversy, as feminist groups voiced their disgust at the films rape scenes. An angle made all the more shocking by the fact the director was a woman. It's since been reported that these sequences were edited into the movie (at the request of Corman himself) after Peters had finished (she went on to publicly denounce the film). So with all this hoo-ha, the key question is, does Humanoids from the Deep cut the mustard? My answer? Oh yes my friends! it most certainly does.

The film is set in a small north California fishing village where a number of beach going young men are brutally murdered, and their girlfriends raped whilst sunbathing. Enter the films hero Jim Hill (monster favourite Doug McClure) we know he's the hero because he sticks up for a Native American, Johny Eagle (Anthony Pena) who's being bullied by the the local rednecks, led by Hank Slattery (Vic Morrow). Jim then sets about solving the mystery of the murders with the help of scientist Dr. Susan Drake (Ann Turkel). She works for the local cannery and fesses up to genetically modifying salmon in order to accelerate growth and improve local fish stocks. It turns out the modified salmon have accidentally been released/escaped into the ocean and mated with a predatory species. The result? you got it, evolved single sex humanoid amphibians that need to mate with young girls to propagate their species. Before Jim and Susan can convince the backward locals however, the randy mutants gatecrash the towns annual Salmon festival wreaking havoc.



Humanoids from the Deep is often unintentionally funny, and always hugely entertaining. Rob Bottin's makeups and monster suits are disgustingly good, the creatures themselves looking very similar to The Creature from the Black Lagoon. The film is in essence the same story taken to it's inevitable sickening conclusion, though elements from Alien and Jaws are also clearly evident. When you consider the people involved with this movie, it's not hard to see why it's so much fun. The music was scored by James Horner, Gale Anne Hurd was a production assistant, and of course Bottin and Corman I've already mentioned. Humanoids is an absolute must for Monster and gore fans, the film is a riot from beginning to end, with plenty of splatter (especially the shocking finale) and all round mayhem. The film is one of my all time favourite trash movies, with perhaps the only criticism I could level at it being the rather distasteful rape angle. Still, b-movie lovers need to seek this one out, it's pure gold. Be careful though, the film was remade (extremely badly) as a TV movie in 1996, avoid that one.







Nightmare City aka City of the Walking Dead (Umberto Lenzi 1980)
Trash rating

Umberto Lenzi is an Italian director best known for his 1981 vomit worthy, and controversial jungle flick, Cannibal Ferox. Not renowned for his subtlety (or his talent) Lenzi's films are notable for their high gore content, inept direction, and exploitative depiction of women (usually involving lots of sadistic violence and nudity). He's probably one of Italy's worst film makers along with Bruno Mattei (a borderline plagiarist), though Mattei's films are a lot more fun (see his 1990 film Shocking Dark aka Terminator II to see what I mean). After Cannibal Ferox, Nightmare City is Lenzi's best known film (both titles were 'video nasties') it's also violent, bloody, and very very baad.

The film is yet another zombie cash in, one of a bunch of Italian movies from the early 80's that aped Romero's Dawn of the Dead. The plot (there really isn't one) begins with Dean Miller (Hugo Stiglitz) a news reporter waiting at an airport to interview a Scientist due to arrive there. The plane lands, and for no apparent reason a group of zombies run out (yes these zombies run) and proceed to kill assorted airport personnel, even brandishing knifes and shooting machine guns (!?). Miller captures the attack on camera, but is prevented from warning the city by Major Warren Holmes (Francisco Rabal). It turns out the 'zombies' are actually contaminated by radiation, and soon they're running amok through the city streets (and in one crazy sequence a television studio) infecting everyone else. Miller proceeds to locate his wife Dr. Anna Miller (Laura Trotter) and together they attempt to escape to the countryside.



Pretty much everything about Nightmare City is bottom of the barrel stuff. The makeups in many cases are completely awful, a lot of the zombies literally looking as if dirt was merely smeared on their faces. Logic and plot are out of the window too, we're given practically no explanation as to where the creatures have come from, instead we're just supposed to revel in the films mindless slaughter (including a breast amputation and an eyeball impalement). In it's favor the film is non stop action, but it's so ineptly realized as to be completely ridiculous. Perhaps the only interesting thing about Nightmare City is the creatures intelligence, their ability to run and shoot guns (which is often funny). Danny Boyle and Alex Garland must surely have been aware of this before they made the overrated (and plagiarist) 28 Days Later. Clearly many people are fond of this flick though, not least Quentin Tarantino, who claims that along with Zombi 2, Nightmare City is one of his favourite Italian zombie films. So maybe I've got it all wrong, don't say I didn't warn you though. Incidentally I did like Stelvio Cipriani's typically Italian soundtrack.








C.H.U.D. (Douglas Cheek 1984)
Trash rating

C.H.U.D. is director Douglas Cheek's (an appropriate surname) only theatrical feature, he's since become a television editor and hasn't returned to the horror genre. The story was written by first timer Shepard Abbott and adapted into a screenplay (that wasn't very popular) by Parnell Hall , neither have written anything else. If this all sounds pretty ominous, and you're thinking, boy, it must be a great movie...not! Well then you'd be right, sort of. You see C.H.U.D. did very well on video back in the 80's, the film built up a cult following, and even spawned a sequel in 1989 (one of the worst films I've ever seen) C.H.U.D. II: Bud the Chud. A lot of this was probably down the films intriguing title, (which stands for Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers), it's effective poster art, and inevitable reputation. Yes, the film is regarded by many as one of the trashiest of the decade, but it's really not that bad. Underneath all the flaws, C.H.U.D. can actually be pretty enjoyable, and has a great b-movie cast (most of whom were already friends).

The story concerns the mysterious disappearance of a group of bums in New York investigated by police detective Bosch (Christopher Curry) whose own wife ends up going missing. Bosch makes inquiries at the local soup kitchen after an old acquaintance, A.J. Shepherd nicknamed 'Reverend' (Daniel Stern who looks like he's been sweeping chimneys) files a report of missing 'undergrounders'. A.J. trusted by the homeless community, helps Bosch out, their investigation leading them into the city sewer system. Whilst all this is going on we also follow photo journalist George Cooper (John Heard),who's doing an article on homeless people living in the sewers. After further investigation A.J. and Bosch discover a cover up by city officials, as it turns out they've been dumping radioactive waste in the sewers. Naturally this has been turning the derelicts into C.H.U.D.'s, who feed on human flesh, regularly making trips topside for food. With the situation out of control, the city big wigs gas the sewers in an attempt the exterminate the C.H.U.D.s. Only problem is, some of our plucky heroes are still down there...



C.H.U.D.'s main problem is the editing which is often muddled (the film has apparently been re-cut for it's dvd release). Characters like Heard (although introduced at the beginning) only become involved with the main plot halfway through, and as such feel tacked on slowing down the narrative. Where the film does succeed is with the cast, many of them playing offbeat roles (especially Stern). They all seem to be having a good time, and as such the film (despite the slow pace) is always watchable. We also get Kim Greist as Cooper's girlfriend, and look out for John Goodman, who briefly appears as an unlucky cop. John Caglione Jr's makeup effects are the films highlight though (they were overseen by Ed French who worked on Terminator 2 amongst other things), the glow eyed monsters look very cool and creepy, even if we don't get to see that much of them. C.H.U.D. also has an effective 1980's minimal electronic score, and some nice murky sewer photography, giving it a gleefully grimy, trashy feel. Overall though C.H.U.D. is merely passable fare, a bit of a missed opportunity really, because the premise is rather good. A remake has been rumored, though it's yet to be confirmed.




A system of cells interlinked
This is becoming one of my favorite threads on MoFo...

The Kindred scared the **** out of me when I was a boy... I have yet to watch it again!



This is becoming one of my favorite threads on MoFo...

The Kindred scared the **** out of me when I was a boy... I have yet to watch it again!
Thanks Sedai,

glad someone is enjoying this, I've not had much feedback, and was considering knocking it on the head. Sadly it seems no-one wants to know about these films anymore, which is a shame because some of them really are a lot of fun. Maybe my title is a little unclear, I probably should have called it something like 'Gory 80's Horror films', you know...for kids.



A system of cells interlinked
Hudsucker!

Well, the thread does get traffic, and I think some of the folks have already dug some of these up and watched (see Mark's post).

That said, these films are probably only of interest to a certain type of viewer, and, just where is our favorite post-apoc film??

I presume Parsifal et al. will be making an appearance?