Today is it! The first day of an October personal challenge: watching an horror movie daily and writing a review on it. Before, I start this challenge, I am amending the criteria a bit. Previously, I stated that I will only do films from 1970-1990. Yeah, that seemed easy, but in retrospect, it’s limiting to a horror lover like me. So, I’m amending that criteria to 1968-1996 so that I can include great films in that time frame. In addition, I will rate each film on a scale of 1 (Why did I bother?) to 10 (Mommy, please leave the light on, okay?) by the number of bloody knives, which tell the film’s worth to me, and I will give at least one fun fact about the film because I love trivia.
So, let’s get on with the show.
I present to you: “Sleepwalkers”.
Ah, teenage love! Girl meets boy. Boy meets girl. Boy is a nomadic, feline shape shifter who’s way too close to his mother for anyone’s comfort level. This 1992 American horror film, directed by Mick Garris and based on a screenplay of the horror genius Stephen King (If I have to add his credentials, simply return to the rock from whence you came and leave me alone), is not only campy in some aspects (e.g. some of the carnage scenes are rather comedic, or is that my sick sense of humor?), but downright creepy.
Seeking new surroundings after killing a young girl, Charles Brady (Brian Krause) and his mother, Mary (Alice Krige), move to the quiet, small town of Travis, Indiana (i.e, If it’s a small town, you know you’re done for) with the guise of starting a new life for their themselves. Don’t expect any neighborly cookouts from these two, they sustain on the life forces of others (e.g. energy vampires), specifically female virgins. Oh, didn’t I tell you they were also cats (human on the outside, though)? Don’t we all have two sides to ourselves?
Recap: A dynamic mother-son duo, who also shape-shift into cats, need the life forces of virginal girls to sustain. Oh, the irony of that sentence is that they’re primary nemeses are cats. Yes, that’s right. They fear the very thing they are. How deep, Mr. King!
How would one get a girl in small town Indiana? Between the two, who is better suited to lure the girls? Of course, it’s good ol’ Charlie! By disguising himself as the new cutie on the block at the local high school, he can blend in properly to snatch his stalked prey. As predicted, he finds the perfectly pure Tanya Robertson (Madchen Amick), cutting loose via her Walkman (remember those?), as she sweeps up during the last movie at the theater where she works. He glimpses at her. She looks at him with virginal abandon and gives him free popcorn. Aw! Eventually, he asks her out for a date (Well, actually, to visit a graveyard to do some sketching. Was that a pick-up line then? I forget.), and since he’s hot, she accepts.
Unbeknownst to Tanya, Mary (aka to Charles) is hungry. Getting as ticked off as we do when we’re starving, time’s ticking and Mother is not happy. Well, that is until she’s calmed by Charles’ affections (Ew!). Those incestuous relationships are so demanding! Mother’s jealous of Tanya because Charles appear to like her genuinely and may be ready to cop out. But, Mother insists that they stick to their plan and move on.
After getting his paws (See what I did there?) on a depraved teacher and trying to avoid a deputy sheriff and his detective cat, Charles has to get on the job and get the delicious aura of Tanya’s into Mother’s belly.
Does it do it? Look at the movie and find out for yourself. Without any apologies, I don’t do spoilers, even if the film is old.
Overall, it’s a good film with a good (albeit cheesy and crazy) plot, average performances by the cast, and a great soundtrack (Santo & Johnny’s “Sleepwalk” appear in the first scenes and Enya’s “Boadicea”, such an atmospheric song, is the song’s theme.). While it’s not terrifying, it’s still worthy of being played during the fearful month of October. Furthermore, I recommend watching this uncensored because, at least to me, there’s an hilarious scene between Clovis, the cat, and his owner, Deputy Sheriff Andy Simpson.
Rating: 6 out of 10
Fun Facts About “Sleepwalkers”: One of the first motion pictures to use morphing in visual effects. Also, if you’re a film lover, like me, you cannot help but notice the various director cameos. John Landis, Joe Dante, Tobe Hooper, and Clive Barker, all masters of horror, appear in front of the camera. Even, Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamil) gets an uncredited cameo.
- Sleepwalkers (1992) (laserblastfilmsociety.wordpress.com)