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The Blob (October 3/01)

Unlike most horror flicks from the '80s, The Blob has actually aged well.

The script is co-written by Frank Darabont, who would eventually win widespread acclaim for his adaptations of two Stephen King works: The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile. It's been directed by Chuck Russell, a highly imaginative individual who's also helmed Eraser (we'll forgive him Bless the Child). And it's got a truly terrifying and virtually unstoppable villain: The blob itself. Throw all those elements together, and you've got a horror movie that manages to be scary, funny, suspenseful and even a parody of other horror movies.

Kevin Dillon stars as the town bad boy (how do we know he's bad? He wears a leather jacket, smokes and rides a motorcycle…without wearing a helmet!) while Shawnee Smith stars as the town beauty (and how do we know she's the town beauty? Why, she's a cheerleader, of course!) One night, a mysterious object crashes to earth, but as we soon find out, this ain't no comet. Held inside is a deadly being that has but one goal: To devour everything and anything that has a pulse. After the blob kills a few people that (of course) the local sheriff immediately pins on bad boy Dillon, Dillon and Smith must team up to save the town, fall in love and destroy that nasty blob.

With a movie like this, only one thing matters: the amount of carnage and gore. And The Blob has a lot of both. Many people die quite brutally during the 95-minute running time, and that's a good thing. The methods vary - from the woman who tries futilely to hide in a phone booth to the various unlucky patrons of a movie theater - which makes the blob one of the most formidable villains in movie history. But besides all the death and violence, The Blob has a good sense of humor about itself. It never takes anything too seriously - it plays like one of those cheesy drive-in flicks that were all the rage in the '50s.

The cast is peppered with familiar faces - including Jeffrey DeMunn and '80s teen idol Donovan Leitch as the doomed star quarterback - and the pace is quick. Will The Blob scare you like, say, Halloween or The Omen? Hardly, but it is a highly enjoyable way to spend 90-minutes .

out of

© David Nusair