Why am I going nuts every night for Banquet brand Salisbury steaks from the frozen food section? It just seems like such an unlikely addiction.
But I just can’t defrost the succulent little bastards fast enough.
I’d probably be shooting this gravy right into my veins, but then I couldn’t taste it.
Mmmphf mff mmphf.
DAMN FINE PRODUCT.
“Killer Klowns From Outer Space” (1988) is generally a bad movie. It has the depth and execution of a mediocre high school play; its acting and screenwriting are almost uniformly poor. (The sole exception here is the wonderful character actor John Vernon, who is always fun to watch.) I’m not even sure it tries to be a good movie. But that’s probably okay with both the filmmakers and its target audience — as you can tell from its title alone, this is deliberate schlock.
And … it’s arguably pretty good schlock, despite its failings — depending on your tastes in bad movies. I don’t think I’d recommend this movie to others, but I suppose I’d rate it a 6 out of 10, based on my own enjoyment. In addition to its generous helping of 80’s cheese, “Killer Klowns From Outer Space” manages to do several things quite beautifully — namely its low budget creature effects, costuming and set design.
For a film so clumsily unimpressive, you’ve got to admit that a hell of a lot of creativity went into its titular monsters and their spaceship. (They are not human clowns, the movie informs us, but alien monsters in the shape of clowns — and we don’t get any more exposition than that.) The garish, creepy art designs are actually really damned good, and it’s easy to see why this film developed a cult following among fans of offbeat horror. It’s also easy to imagine that coulrophobics (people with a phobia for clowns) might find this movie genuinely unsettling.
Here’s the good news — if you aren’t sure you’d want to spend money on this movie, you can currently watch it for free (and legally) right over at Youtube. Here’s the link.
Postscript: I thought that Grant Cramer, who played one of the movie’s protagonists, looked incredibly familiar. Yet I was surprised when I learned I hadn’t seen anything else in his filmography. Here’s who I may have been seeing — he is the son of none other than legendary starlet Terry Moore. Classic movie fans might remember her from any number of films from Hollywood’s Golden Age. But if you’re a monster movie fan like me, then you remember her as the young heroine of 1949’s original “Mighty Joe Young.”
When to the sessions of sweet silent thought
I summon up remembrance of things past,
I sigh the lack of many a thing I sought,
And with old woes new wail my dear time’s waste:
Then can I drown an eye, unus’d to flow,
For precious friends hid in death’s dateless night,
And weep afresh love’s long since cancell’d woe,
And moan th’ expense of many a vanish’d sight;
Then can I grieve at grievances foregone,
And heavily from woe to woe tell o’er
The sad account of fore-bemoaned moan,
Which I new pay as if not paid before.
But if the while I think on thee, dear friend,
All losses are restor’d, and sorrows end.
You sit down at precisely the same time that your neighbor fires a gun off at 2 AM, and you wonder with panic whether the sound you just heard was you blowing out a knee.
I don’t know what these two are discussing, but I know she has a couple of good points.
(I am so sorry. I apologize for this post. Puns like these are just irresistible to me. I have a problem.)
— from W. H. Auden’s “The Sea and the Mirror”
Evening, grave, immense, and clear,
Overlooks our ship whose wake
Lingers undistorted on
Sea and silence; I look back
For the last time as the sun
Sets behind that island where
All our loves were altered: yes,
My prediction came to pass,
Yet I am not justified,
And I weep but not with pride.
Not in me the credit for
Words I uttered long ago
Whose glad meaning I betrayed;
Truths to-day admitted, owe
Nothing to the councilor
In whose booming eloquence
Honesty became untrue.
Am I not Gonzalo who
By his self-reflection made
Consolation an offence?
There was nothing to explain:
Had I trusted the Absurd
And straightforward note by note
Sung exactly what I heard,
Such immediate delight
Would have taken there and then
Our common welkin by surprise,
All would have begun to dance
Jigs of self-deliverance.
It was I prevented this,
Jealous of my native ear,
Mine the art which made the song
Sound ridiculous and wrong,
I whose interference broke
The gallop into jog-trot prose
And by speculation froze
Vision into an idea,
Irony into a joke,
Till I stood convicted of
Doubt and insufficient love.
Farewell, dear island of our wreck:
All have been restored to health,
All have seen the Commonwealth,
There is nothing to forgive.
Since a storm’s decision gave
His subjective passion back
To a meditative man,
Even reminiscence can
Comfort ambient troubles like
Some ruined tower by the sea
Whence boyhoods growing and afraid
Learn a formula they need
In solving their mortality,
Even rusting flesh can be
A simple locus now, a bell
The Already There can lay
Hands on if at any time
It should feel inclined to say
To the lonely – “Here I am,”
To the anxious – “All is well.”
O, beloved young,
Flee the seething 30 to
50 feral hogs.