In simple terms my review of Eureka’s Blu-ray release of the 1987 classic ‘Night of the Creeps’ can be summarised in two words: “Buy it”. From start to finish this sci-fi zombie crossover is an absolute blast, putting a host of fun characters into a nightmare scenario which showcases all the best ingredients from Horror’s heyday decade, in a HD-remastered ‘deluxe’ package.
The plot pitches a prom princess and her geek admirer against a legion of the walking dead, controlled by a worm-like alien parasites which enters the mouths of the unsuspecting coeds. As the night draws to its conclusion, the last survivors of the sorority house must aim for the head and fight metaphorical fire with the literal kind if they hope to avoid the takeover.
Director/writer Fred Dekker’s zany plot draws on the industries established clichés to ensure that the horror-comedies tone, pace and story stays planted throughout. Beginning in the vein of a hammy 50s science fiction the brisk opener already begins to showcase some of the films outstanding special effects, offering up a tantalizing teaser of what’s to come. As the characters are introduced we begin to see some 80s regulars – and its no surprise to see that many cite this film as fondly remembered in interviews – they look like their having a blast. Tom Atkins shines as an ‘open minded’ police officer, whilst Jill Whitlow and Jason Lively ensure you warm to the films love interest hero/heroin couple. The script never takes itself too seriously, and whilst admittedly there isn’t a lot coming out in story form, someone put their homework into ensuring that the films numerous action/gore set pieces hit their mark; the numerous ‘in-jokes’ don’t hurt the films fun factor either.
Whilst I acknowledge that ‘Night of the Creeps’ is something of a fan favourite, and you certainly see it referenced on forums often enough, the film has flown somewhat under the radar since its release; certainly, in terms of decent physical releases. Crazy really, because story aside, its gore and action scenes are up there rubbing charred shoulders with the best the genre has to offer. If exploding heads, gooey mutilations and cool creature effects weren’t enough to grab you, the sheer volume of violent content in run up to the film’s finale is sure to impress.
Throughout the film we view a number of explosive headshots, the slimy parasites erupting from the heads of their hosts and some awesome looking zombies which in many respects look like the undead offspring from the corpses found in other genre-favs ‘Creepshow’ and ‘Return of the Living Dead’. The film is violent throughout, which is great because it makes the 90 minute runtime pass like 90 seconds.
The film saves the best for last to, the finale is an absolute banger. Combining headshots with a fully operational flamethrower the film quite literal explosive finale has to be one of the best of the decade, and that is saying something. Stunning to say the least. Presented here, high-def and as a director’s cut, it’s great to view the film ‘as intended’.
Overall, the 5-star rating is thoroughly deserved, this is a true gem. Kudos to Eureka on another stellar release! ‘Night of the Creeps’ is available as a special edition ‘First Run Only’ version, on the 8th of October, and then a ‘deluxe’ edition subsequently.