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Children of the Corn (1984)
| Directed by:
cute couple (Horton, Hamilton) find themselves stuck in some hick town in
Nebraska called Gatlin. A group of adult-murdering, corn-demon-worshipping
kids make their stay a living hell.
flick is based on a short Stephen King story from his “Night Shift”
I was a wee little brat, this flick gave me the freaking creeps. Now that I’m an
older brat, I’m saddened to say that the only thing that this film gave
me was a “hurling” sensation down my throat. And it’s a damn shame
there’s actual potential for a chilling story somewhere in there. Now before I
proceed to stick a corn on the cob up this film's yahoo, I will go on
record and say a few positive things.
poor film did manage to put out a couple of somewhat brrr-inducing moments.
By the way of the creepy cornfields, the initial “adult” slaughter or the
eerie sight of children closing in on an adult in a deserted town, weapons
in hand. But the rest of the movie wastes those moments effortlessly. Now
butter it up because here comes the corn!
movie rubbed me the wrong way from the get-go with its narration (by
little kid Robby Kiger). I found it unnecessary and corny (pun intended).
The film continued to lose its grasp by including an extended stalk
sequence that wound up being a dream sequence (that killed all of the
impact the scene should’ve had). Then, the flick totally lost me when two
of its prominent “corn fetish” kids (Isaac and Malachai) started to
spit out dialogue. Oh my god! The horror, the horror of those lines! With
crap like “I have your woman outlander”,
“question me not”, “seize him” or my personal favorite,
they call the leads: “interlopers”-- the film just went too far and had
to that a hero (Horton) that keeps on making extremely dumb moves (would you
leave your wife alone in a deserted town after finding a dead kid with his
throat slit? If you see a cornfield part by itself, do you enter it???), a
kill scene that takes all kinds of time to unfold and eventually doesn’t
even bother paying off (with a character that talks to himself, keeps
blaming it on the wind and who’s not impressed by clouds moving at light
speed…BARF) and an incredibly ridiculous ending (with tacky visual
effects, a demon that travels under the soil like a gopher, a mano-a-mano
confrontation filled with backhand slaps and a makeup job that had me in
stitches laughing)...and you get one lousy movie.
Of The Corn’s biggest sin is undoubtedly the way that it handles its
element but running a close second is its snore-inducing pace. Taking
into account the premise of this flick, how the hell did it wind up being
so boring? This could’ve been "creepy fun" if treated differently but as
things stand now, this flick should’ve stayed behind the rows…
to Peter Horton (Burt) who manages to keep a straight face during this
mess. Linda Hamilton (Vicky) is as charming as ever and her chemistry with
Horton is on. Robby Kiger (Job) does ok but more fear out of him would
have been nice. Anne Marie McEvoy (Sarah) is a cutie and will grow up to
break some hearts one day (today she’s all growns up, so yes...she must be
breaking hearts). To be fair John Franklin (Isaac) is stuck with the worse
dialogue but his Shakespearian delivery didn’t help his case. His voice
also hurt my ears. Ease down, young Jedi! Courtney Gains (Malachai) is one
creepy looking dude and he does what he has to do, unfortunately he too
has to sputter putrid dialogue and got on my nerves.
of the kills are off-screen. We do get a slit throat, a light stabbing and
lots of bright red blood splashing all around. The film likes to set up kills
and then cheat us out of the payoffs.
goes shirtless; Hamilton and the corn keep their clothes on.
adds a bit of coating on this turd. He has a few groovy wide shots, likes
to show shadows of kids or weapons and goes coo-coo with close ups of
knives. But the pace of the film is just too slow, the suspense scenes lag, the
fight sequences are silly (what wuz up with that bitch slapping?) and he
also tends to be a bit heavy-handed with his direction.
score by Jonathan Elias works when a “chorale” is used but the rest of
the time, it sounds pretty tacky.
Anchor Bay Entertainment
Digital 5.1 sound.
widescreen transfer in its original 1.85:1 aspect ratio.
watched this one with my brother and here’s what came out of my mouth
during the film: “The music is kind of creepy”, “Fuck me man, it was a
dream!”, “Come on, get to the point!”, “What the fuck is that guy
doing? What an idiot!”, “Will Isaac shut the fuck up already!”,
“Malachai better get a good death”, “What’s he doing at the school,
didn’t he say he was going to the town hall?”, “Oh man, will this
ever end? Give me another beer NOW!”, “That’s it? Malachai
deserved way worse!”, “The effects suck!”, “Fuck me man...this movie
is awful!” RENT AT YOUR OWN RISK!
the film, you can see a copy of King’s "Night Shift" on the dashboard of
the car (the film is based on a story from Night Shift).
Franklin returns in "Children of the Corn Part 6" as Isaac and
he also co-wrote the screenplay.
this movie on The Arrow's HORROR BOARD
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