Every so often a movie gets a remake, well maybe more often than not these days with the advent of the term ‘reboot’ but occasionally a remake is pretty decent. In 1988 filmmakers Chuck Russell and Frank Darabont teamed up to present a remake of the 1958 classic, The Blob.
Todays Key Movie:
The Blob (directed by Chuck Russell) is a direct remake of the 1958 film of the same name but modernized for the 1980’s horror fans. Set in Arborville, California the story starts with a meteor crashing near the town. Something in the meteor infects a homeless man and three wayward teens attempt to get the man to safety, indirectly affecting the town with a gelatinous flesh-eating blob. Starring Kevin Dillon, Shawnee Smith and Donovan Leitch as the teens, they are faced with defeating this mindless and carnivorous being while the town goes to hell.
Why this movie?
I remember distinctly my Father being both fearful and excited about a remake of one of his childhood favorites. Fearful because, with all favorite films, the phrase ‘ why make a remake, the original is perfect’ is tossed around. He loved the original film that starred a young Steve McQueen and justifiably so. Remakes are, many times unnecessary at best.
He was excited because, being a fan of horror, he recognized that special effects had come a long way in 1988. In fact two other remakes he loved The Thing and The Fly had only been released a few years before and they were marked improvements over the originals. So, why would The Blob be any different?
Sadly, it was a box office bomb and, although the special effects were outstanding, the movie was only so-so.
How did this translate to real life?
Did you know that the original 1958 film was ‘based’ on a true story? No, a giant jello mold didn’t eat a town in the 50’s (although with their obsession with jello in those days it wouldn’t have been surprising) . Apparently two officers in 1950 witnessed a ‘large sparkly mass’ fall to earth. When they arrived at the scene they found a large purple jelly that had a slight glow and was pulsating. Crazy huh? for more on this story check out the article from Blumhouse here. they have all the deets.
This next paragraph is a bit spoilery so only read it if you don’t care:
One thing this movie does is establish that the ‘creature’ is actually from a government based experiment and NOT actually an alien. It is interesting that they went this way as that in turn makes the entire film a bit of a conspiracy of its own. Not unfitting for the era it was made.
Okay, you like this film, but is it really a ‘good film’?
That’s a hard one. I do like this film. The special effects are really amazing and the story is great. The acting, however…leaves a bit to be desired for. I can only recommend this film to horror fans and special effects nuts.
It does have some great moments in it. One in particular involves a rather ‘rapey’ guy who is about to take advantage of his drunk date. He obviously preplans his intentions as his trunk is filled with a wet bar (yeah, creepy). Anyhow, when he goes to make his move, let’s just say the Blob had already made its move and the scene is pretty epic.
The ending also leaves some cool openness that could serve for another remake/continuation in the future…
Of course, the trailer:
Another great scene from the film: The Phonebooth Death Scene.
OK, where do I get this movie?
You can find this one on pretty much any bargain rack at your local department store. It also pops up on streaming services regularly.
You can also grab a copy here for around $8.
If you would like to read more reviews I have a weekly series called Key Movies Of My Life that comes out every Wednesday and also a complete review of Star Trek Discovery. Be sure to check out our contributor Darkmovienight with the New Movie Reviews every Sunday.
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Late To The Game 9/27/18