I remember the commercials and the tag line for Night of the Creeps when it was first released back in 1986.
“The good news is your date is here. The bad news is…he’s dead.”
Truth be told, I don’t know why I missed it in theatres. Thought I was only 9 years old, my dad and I were hitting lots of horror films back then – Fright Night, Ghoulies, Gremlins. Somehow, Night of the Creeps just got missed, which made catching up on it with the new collector’s edition Blu-ray from Scream Factory such a treat.
The premise is simple (for those of you that haven’t seen it either) – an alien experiment that infects a college student in 1959 wreaks havoc twenty-seven years later when the boy’s cryogenically-frozen body is thawed out and unleashes creatures that turn their victims into zombies.
Written and directed by Fred Dekker (The Monster Squad, Robocop 3), Night of the Creeps is a mash-up of all sorts of horror genres – zombies, aliens, slasher flicks. They’re all here and paid tribute to in a fun way. The acting and most of the special effects hold up well more than thirty years later; the film possesses that horror-comedy feel that’s been lost over the ensuing decades since its original release, though the gore factor might notch slightly more in the horror territory. Tom Atkins, who I know best from the now-classic Halloween III: Season the Witch, plays the cliched cop role of Ray Cameron with everything he can give it, and you can see why the actor says it’s his favourite character. It’s one of those great, scenery-chewing roles.
The new Scream Factory edition of Night of the Creeps comes with extras both old and new. Here’s the rundown of what you’ll find: