in Shocktober

Shocktober: Day 21

Creepshow (1982)

Dir: George A. Romero
Cast: Hal Holbrook, Adrienne Barbeau, E.G. Marshall, Ed Harris, Leslie Nielsen, Ted Danson, Stephen King, Fritz Weaver

: EC Comics a.k.a Entertaining Comics produced some of the most controversial comics of the Late 40s to Early 50s. Titles like Tales from the Crypt , The Vault of Horror, and Weird Science, were all cult classics, but suffered a severe backlash due to their violent and adult content. Unfortunately those titles didn’t last long after their battle against censorship, but in 1982 they were remembered once more by two guys by the names of Stephen King and George A. Romero.

The film was called Creepshow and it was an all out tribute to E.C. Comics. An anthology film, King would provide the stories in the style of E.C. while George A. Romero (Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead) would take the helm as director. The result was a comic book come to life with big laughs, big scares, big twists and style oozing out of every rotted orophus.

I’ll split up the rest of the review by simply commenting on each segment.

– Father’s Day: A man (Jon Lormer) killed on Father’s Day by his daughter Bedelia (Viveca Lindfors) rises from the dead to seek vengeance and some cake that he never got. Probably my least favorite segment but it’s very brief, so no real complaints just typical shocker stuff.

– The Lonesome Death Of Jordy Verill: King himself stars as the title character who after touching a meteorite starts to grow vegetation all over his body. It’s more comedic in tone but ends on a dark note and King is actually pretty entertaining.

– Something to Tide You Over: Mad at his unfaithful wife (Gaylen Ross), Richard Vickers (Leslie Nielsen) buries her and her lover Harry (Ted Danson) up to their necks in sand right before high tide! But what happens when one night they come back? This one is probably the freakiest and is made even freakier by the unusually dramatic performance from Leslie Nielsen.

– The Crate: Henry Northup (Hal Holbrook) is a college professor unhappily married to the insufferable Wilma (Adrienne Barbeau). Wishing for a change of scenery, tables turn when Henry comes into possession of a crate containing a rare and dangerous animal. Easily the best segment for it’s humor, performances and creature effects, The Crate is the highlight of the film.

– They’re Creeping Up on You: Upson Pratt (E.G. Marshall) hates two things; germs and people. Living in a completely sterilized apartment, he spends this particular evening abusing employees and other folks over the phone. Everything is under his grasp… Until an onslaught of never-ending cockroaches invade his home. A strong note to go out on, E.G. Marshall’s character is the kind of character you love to hate.

All the segments are tied together with additional wraparounds of a boy (King’s son Joe King) who orders a voodoo doll to get revenge on his dad (Tom Atkins) for throwing out his comics. It’s just a wacky horror romp that’s overflowing with comic book style. There was a sequel but the stories were no where near as funny or inventive.