Wednesday, November 13, 2013

C.H.U.D. (1984 film)

What are you, kidding?Your man has a camera.Mine has a flamethrower. - CAPTAIN BOSCH

My original plan coming into the month was to cover the two DR. PHIBES movies yesterday and today, and to cover C.H.U.D. on the 10th.Well, coming into the month, I couldn't find my copy of C.H.U.D., so I put in the substitution of .As today grew closer, I started looking for my Phibes films.I found the first one... and I found C.H.U.D. in a place that I could've easily found it if I'd looked hard enough.However, DR. PHIBES RISES AGAIN proved to be elusive to my search efforts, so I came up with the alternate plan of running a classic article yesterday and a new one today... and with C.H.U.D. found, I knew exactly what to use.

So, on to C.H.U.D.!Before today, I've had very little contact with this film.I saw bits and pieces of it once, several years ago, but nothing really stuck with me then.I am, however, very familiar with the "sequel", C.H.U.D. 2: BUD THE C.H.U.D., it's one of my favorite films from my childhood.So, going into the movie, I didn't have any expectations other than the usual hope to enjoy myself.

The movie opens on a woman walking her dog down the middle of a deserted New York City street as the camera pans down to a manhole cover that starts moving mysteriously.Once the woman walks within reach of said manhole cover, a green, scaly, clawed hand reaches out and grabs her leg, pulling her and her dog into the hole and leaving nothing but her shoe on the street.Next, we meet George Cooper, a photographer whose contact, Derrick, keeps trying to contact him for shots of a specific homeless woman he's been following.We find he used to be a fashion photographer, as his girlfriend, Lauren, tells him she set up a photo shoot the next day for her to model and him to photograph her.Finally, we meet Bosch, a captain of the police force who's troubled by the recent disappearances in his precinct.Investigating another missing person's report, he goes to pay a visit to A.J. Shepherd who runs the local soup kitchen.A.J. tells him that twelve of his regulars have gone missing.What connection do the twelve disappearances have with the homeless woman George knows, and what connection does Bosch's superiors have to it?

This film was an interesting viewing for me.It had a lot of action to it, especially near the ending of the film.The acting was well-done, the sense of danger was high, and there were a few surprises in it for me.The make-up was good on the C.H.U.D.'s, with them all looking somewhat different, and what wasn't done well was semi-hidden with quick flash cuts of their faces.The shots of their hands look a little bit fake, but who knows what mutated skin would look like in this kind of situation?

We got a nice assortment of actors in the film.JOHN HEARD played George Cooper, the photographer whose connection to the city's underground homeless leads him into contact with the hidden menace.A very prolific actor, he's been in a LOT of films and television shows, sometimes multiple in the same year as of late, but some of his most noted are CAT PEOPLE, the first two HOME ALONE films and AWAKENINGS.DANIEL STERN played A.J. Shepherd, aka The Reverend, the man running the soup kitchen and one of the first to realize the homeless are disappearing and the government's covering it up.Mr. Stern was also in the Home Alone films, as well as LITTLE MONSTERS, LEVIATHAN and OTIS.KIM GREIST played George's girlfriend, Lauren, his support system and someone who gets drawn unwittingly into the situation.She was also in original Hannibal Lector film MANHUNTER, THROW MOMMA FROM THE TRAIN and SHRIEK IF YOU KNOW WHAT I DID LAST FRIDAY THE 13TH.Also watch for JOHN GOODMAN in an early film appearance (his fourth) as a policeman in a diner.He's graced the original version of HAPPY HORROR in WOLFGANG NIBORI'S review of FALLEN, and also been in ARACHNOPHOBIA and MATINEE.

A pretty fun movie, with some good acting and some good special effects to it.I give it a 4 out of 5.Tomorrow starts my coverage of the Big Three film franchises, with NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET.Thanks to everyone who visited the site for my HAUNTED AIRMAN coverage, you gave me the highest pageview count I've had yet.Take care of yourselves, watch out for moving manhole covers, and this is RED HAWK signing out!
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