Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Flicks that really messed me up as a kid.

Finally rounded them all up!

Here we go...

The Children (1980)

About a nuclear plant leaking this yellow gas, which mutates a busload of kids, so that they're evil, have black fingernails, have no blood, and have the power to burn you alive with their touch.

Hacking off their hands kills them, and when they die (emitting this disturbing howl), the fingernails turn back to normal.

Saw this when I was 5, and it scared the ever-living shit out of me, and gave me nightmares.
My memories faded, and I thought I'd dreamed the whole thing, and then it became one of those memories that completely vanishes, and every 5 years randomly pops up out of nowhere.

Anyhoo, what should happen to be on the Toxie 1 DVD, but the trailer for this.
Apparently, Troma has been buying up the rights to a bunch of old expired movies, and adding them to their catalog.
Turns out they also own "White "Zombie", and "The Devil Bat", so, they get a slice of those oldies movies sets.

Anyhoo, my jaw dropped when I saw that.
"Holy shit, it's REAL!! I didn't dream it!".

So, about a week or so after that, I noticed they had it on the official Troma Youtube channel, and I watched it yesterday, and...it holds up rather well as a tense little horror flick. I dug it.
I mean, yeah, you can see through the cheesey effects, and no way it would scare me like it did back then, but, taking into account the times, and the budget, not bad.

The score by Harry Manfredini (Friday The 13th, Swamp Thing), does a lot of the work though for establishing mood and tension.

Also, Gale Garnet (the female singer for "Mad Monster Party"), plays a lead role.

Fortress (1986)

An Aussie flick.
Aussies make some disturbing shit, man.

So, some maniacs in Santa masks kidnap a busload of kids, and their teacher, and hold them hostage, and the teacher teaches the kids how to go Rambo on their asses.

More of an action thriller, but the Santa masks, and the very end bit where they have the one guy's heart in a jar in the classroom are what fucked me up.

Think I saw this one on HBO.

Shockwaves (1977)

So, dig this plot.
Nazis somehow invented zombies, and then we beat them, and their zombie battalion was left at the bottom of the sea, awaiting ze ordahs.

Some average shlubs stumble across them, and mayhem ensues.

The big visual gimmick of the flick is, their weakness turns out to be, if you rip off their goggles, they shrivel up like a slug exposed to salt.

That's the bit that creeped me out.
But...grody as it was, it was killing the monsters, so that forced me to watch to see if the good guys made it.

I think this was the only horror flick that freaked me out that I forced myself to toughen up to, and learn to love as a kid, instead of having to take a second pass at in adulthood.

This one still remains a cult classic.
Worth checking out.

Strange Invaders (1983)

Well, I very recently rewatched this one, and it's a fucking disappointment.

It's about aliens who landed here in the 50's and have been hiding out disguised as humans ever since.
The tone and style is an homage to the b-movie saucer-men movies of the 50's.

The bits that disturbed me as a kid where two key scenes.

One, an alien guy peels off his human face, and the mask is some kind of bio-tech, or something, because there are membranes and goo and shit inside.

That made me flat out puke as a kid.
Ran right to the bathroom with a mouthful of chunks

Then, another scene, they display this odd power to turn you into a lifeforce ball, and it's never revealed why they do this, but the transformation process involves you crushing up into an empty skin, and then shriveling away into this ball that has your voice.
Even though, the ball can turn back into you with just glowey animation.
Makes no sense.

Anyway, they do this to a little boy, and you see the legs shrivel, and there's crunching sounds, and the kid groans, and grunts, and gurgles in pain the whole way, then it happens to his face, but I never could make myself look at that point.

That haunted my fucking nightmares for a month.

Now, it totally looks like rubber, and it's silly.
But..still...WTF, movie?

And that's it, that's the good parts, the whole rest of the movie is boring as shit, and stupid as shit.
These asshole aliens allegedly managed to hide for 25 years, but then, all of a sudden, they're fucking morons, and keep doing weird shit to raise suspicion.
Like oh, ordering room service, ripping their bio-masks off, knowing fucking room service is coming, and then having to zap the room service guy.

Or, ball-ifying the hero's dog, even though the dog didn't do anything threatening, acting shifty about it, and when the hero just starts asking about if anyone's seen his dog...laser blasting his car and trying to kill him.

The whole flick is full of "WTF??", shit like that.
Except when it's boring.

Anyway, I've been trying to find this fucking thing for 30 fucking years, and finally I stumbled onto it on Youtube.

So THERE, seen it.
It sucks.
I can move on now.

The Demon Murder Case (1983)

See here.

(Said like the little boy from "Poltergeist", when he's beating up the clown doll)
I hate you! I hate you! I hate you!!

Burnt Offerings (1977)

See here again.

Eh, I liked that poster better, so changed it up for this one.
But hey, dig that cast, huh?

And that's those.
Hmm, yeah, they're all about in that 1983 window...
Even the '77 ones I saw at that time.
Interesting to hold it in front of me, and lock it down, instead of it just being melty swirly memories in my head crawling around.

Anyway, I pass it along to you.


Philip said...

Cool, I see most of this involves mutant kids who simply shouldn't be being so damn mutant to everyone! :)

I think the film that lasts most in my memories was Total Recall with Aaarrnold.

That bit where he disguises himself as a woman and his head does that fucked up shit. I was a bit young when I saw that, probably not the best of ideas!

Problem was, I went to bed that night and got jumped on by the cat - scared the living shit out of me! If I wasn't already warped by the film, this cat leaping on me was the final straw!

Diacanu said...

Oh, man, scenes in regular movies that messed me up...I gotta think on that one.

Diacanu said...

Oh yeah! The shapeshifter in Krull!
D'ya ever see Krull?

And the alpha unit in The Last Starfighter.

The former was an old man slowly turning into a worm (its true form) pulsating rubber puppet style with a disturbing shriek until it finally tunneled into the ground.

The latter was a shapeshifting android that copied the hero, and in shapeshift mode, looked like a jelly fetus thing.
You only see it for like, two seconds, and that's all it took.

Diacanu said...


Saw all of "The Demon Murder Case".

Link here.


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