Monday, 17 September 2012

Horror Review: The Blob (1988)

A strange lifeform consumes everything in its path as it grows and grows.

It's very rare that I like a remake over the original but this remake of the 1958 film starring Steve McQueen is one of them. That's not to take anything away from the original, it was a great b-movie, I've just always felt the remake was a better version.

On paper a film about a killer blob of jelly-slime is laughable, but on screen it works so well. This is mainly down to some amazing visual effects, great acting and good work from the writing and directing. It's in the same vein as what Carpenter did with "The Thing", taking a b-movie classic and giving it a modern makeover without disrespecting the original.

The effects team deserve huge praise for their work the blob looks amazing and actually quite frightening. The death scenes are amazingly done, they're so gruesome, gritty and gory that they stick in your brain for a long time. They're that good that they still hold up-to today's standards, even bettering some, I just cringe at the thought of a blob done with C.G.I.

The acting is great, especially a young Shawnee Smith who puts in an amazing performance that draws you in-to the unfolding events through-out the film, so much so you can feel yourself tensing up as she tries to escape from the blob. The tension and suspense are quite high, which is quite surprising considering the subject matter of the film.

Yes it is quite cheesy in places but that just adds so much charm to the film, plus how can you expect a film like this not to be at-least a little cheesy?! It's a fun film to watch, mixing elements of a typical slasher with sci-fi and to pull it off is a great achievement.

If you enjoy films like "The Stuff" then you'll love this, it's great entertainment. If you haven't already watched this then I highly recommend it.

If you want to see "The Blob" trailer then just click on the video below:

Miscellaneous facts about the film:

Rock salt was dyed purple to create the crystallized Blob for the ending of the movie.

All of the exteriors for the movie were shot in a small south Louisiana town called Abbeville. Abbeville is laid out almost exactly the same as Arbeville, Colorado, where the movie takes place. Abbeville was used because filming took place in late 1987 and Arbeville was covered in snow. It's just a weird coincedence that the names are so similar.

The sheriff was named after famous jazz musician Herb Geller.

The motorcycles used by Kevin Dillon in the film are a 500cc T100R Triumph Tiger and a 200cc T20 Triumph Tiger Cub for the jumps.

Donovan Leitch, who plays Paul Taylor, had to have a full body cast made of himself for one of the more complicated scene where Paul underneath the blob. There were about 50 people running the unstrung Paul. However, 'Chuck Russell' did not tell Shawnee Smith it was really Donovan Leitch underneath the Blob for the first part of the scene. She believed it was going to be an unstrung person. This was so he could get more of a shock out of her. That is the take that is now seen in the movie when Meg screams out Paul's name upon discovering him.

Shawnee Smith ("Meg Penny") was once asked whether or not the producers remembered to heat the sewer-water she plunged into while fleeing the Blob. Chuckling, she answered, "Well, they TRIED."

Two minor roles were played by Playboy Playmates. Vicki De Soto was played by Erika Eleniak (July 1989) and Susie was played by Julie McCullough (February 1986).

The film, co-written by Frank Darabont - who has adapted a number of Stephen King's works for the screen - contains several references to King's novel "The Stand":

1) In the novel, a viral "superflu" is engineered by the U.S. government in a biological weapons laboratory that is accidentally unleashed, resulting in a worldwide pandemic; in the film, the blob is likewise the result of experiments in biological warfare accidentally unleashed by the government. Additionally, though the government agents know the blob's true nature, they tell the citizens of Asheville that they are dealing with a highly contagious disease.

2) Kevin Dillon plays Brian Flagg; the demonic Randall Flagg appeared in several of King's novels, making his first appearance in "The Stand".

3) The blob's first victim, the homeless man, is credited as "Can Man," a reference to the STAND character "Trash Can Man." Trash Can Man was Randall Flagg's most devoted follower; in this film, Can Man shares nearly all his scenes with Brian Flagg.

Of the film's $19 million budget, $9 million went toward visual effects.

Michael Kenworthy fondly recalls on-screen sister Shawnee Smith as his first major crush in real life. According to him, "She and I hit it off pretty well... Whenever she went to hug me, I'd give her the hug plus a kiss. That always made her blush!"

No comments:

Post a comment