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1982 film directed by George A. Romero

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Also a geek show.

  • Aug 17, 2012
Rating:
+4
***1/2 out of ****

In 1982, two of horror's greatest living legends, author Stephen King and director George Romero ("Night of the Living Dead", "Martin"), combined their twisted imaginations for one hell of a chill-filled ride, and it was called "Creepshow". Released to mixed reviews but met with an army of faithful admirers later on in its existence, it's also a geek show; a cult flick that deserves the audience that it enjoyed back in the day and still enjoys in this day and age. People have been lead to believe that these films are destined from the start to be messy and uneven; but not this one. "Creepshow" serves as a friendly reminder of just how good an anthology piece can be when all segments are done by one director, one writer, and a star-studded cast of mixed talents.

The five stories are held together by comic book-like animations. First up is "Father's Day", in which a wealthy family is haunted by a relative who killed the elderly patriarch on father's day some time ago, insistent on returning to the old man's grave for the anniversary every year on that ill-fated day; Jon Lormer, Viveca Lindfors, and Ed Harris star. The second segment, "The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verill", is about a lonely farmer played by Stephen King himself who comes into contact with a meteorite that crashes on his property and literally starts turning into a plant along with everything else he's touched prior to coming into contact with the substance found within the space rock.

The third, and best (in my opinion), piece is titled "Something to Tide You Over". It is about a rich but mentally unstable psychopath (Leslie Nielson) who discovers his wife (Gaylen Ross) has been having an affair with a younger man (Ted Danson) and conspires to kill them both by burying them in beach sand and letting the ocean waves do the rest of the work. The fourth story is called "The Crate", and it's a peculiar one in which a college professor (Fritz Weaver), his colleague (Hal Holbrook), and Holbrook's annoying wife (Adrienne Barbeau) have a nasty beast on their hands; a giant, demonic gorilla concealed in a large crate until Weaver and a college janitor let it loose.

And then the last segment is "They're Creeping Up on You". Oh, I loved this one. It involves a disgusting, mean businessman (E.G. Marshall) whose extreme fear of bugs has led him to become a social recluse and, more or less, the heartless bastard that he is now. But he's about to be given an entirely new perspective on his phobia; as a horde of cockroaches floods his apartment come night and proceeds to drive him to insanity. It's a great concluding chapter to these five tales of terror; and it all begins and ends the same, with a young boy (Joe King) with a passion for horror-based comic books getting yelled at by his father (Tom Atkins), who throws away the comics for their grotesque content, and then getting back at him for such emotional cruelty.

There isn't a dull segment here. Romero finds a way to make each one interesting and spooky, and thus no matter what the general story, there's always some dark pleasure to be found in it. My favorite, as I mentioned earlier, was the story with Leslie Nielson as the villain. I think it's a very interesting role for Nielson, famous for his work as a slapstick comic, and he pulls off the psychopath character brilliantly. That piece probably would have fallen apart had it not been for that great performance. The only segment that I felt was slightly lacking was "The Crate". Like the others, it's a suspenseful and well-told story, but I'll admit that it lost me for a moment somewhere in the middle. I think that, overall, it is what makes "Creepshow" imperfect in my eyes but still fantastic. Nevertheless, it's still as entertaining as the rest; just not half as scary or funny, but it has its moments. Props to Tom Savini for the wild gore and make-up effects and Michael Gornick for the innovative use of lighting and quirky camerawork, which could be called Romero's to claim, since he has a distinctive style and it certainly shows here.

This is easily one of the best horror anthologies out there, even if there are not many that I've actually seen. Unlike most of them, all segments are good or even great in their own ways; and like a lot of them, it's a lot of fun to watch. It's simply so energetic and creepy at times, intent to scare us and humor us at the same time, that even the flaws that some could point out if they felt the need to would not be enough to block out the extensive charm. Films like these make me glad I'm not a film critic and that I'm a horror fan. If I were any more critical, I'd certainly be rendered unable to enjoy. And I honestly feel bad for anyone who isn't able to enjoy a movie as good as "Creepshow".

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More Creepshow reviews
review by . October 17, 2009
Creepshow is a horror fan's dream come true. Two of the masters in their respective fields joining forces to collaborate on a movie. Several tales filmed in an anthology style based upon the E.C. Comics that the two enjoyed reading in their youths. With Stephen King writing and George A. Romero directing plus Tom Savini creating the gory special effects how can you go wrong? You just can't and the aforementioned duo delivers the goods.      The story begins as a young kid is …
About the reviewer
Ryan J. Marshall ()
Ranked #11
It's very likely that the only kind of reviews I'll ever post here are movie reviews. I'm very passionate about film; and at this point, it pretty much controls my life. Film gives us a purpose; … more
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About this movie

Wiki

Special effects were created by Tom Savini who also has a small part as a garbage man.

The film was edited to obtain an R-rating.
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Details

Director: George A. Romero
Genre: Horror, Comedy
Release Date: November 12, 1982
MPAA Rating: R
Screen Writer: Stephen King
Runtime: 120 minutes
Studio: Creepshow Films Inc.
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