Director: George A. Romero
Tom Atkins/Billy’s Father
Writer Stephen King and director George Romero team up to slap 6 scary tales our way (if you count the wrap-around story as well) with all the style and class of the old EC horror comics.
Creepshow’s coating is bang-on in keeping with the EC “comic book” spirit. I loved how the flick played out some of its scenes within comic book panels. It gave the film a zany and unique visual style. But how’s the content, you may ask? Read on and find out ya'll!
Wrap-Around Story: “A bitter father verbally abuses his son for reading a “Creepshow” comic and then throws the mag in the trash. The son gets even” This storyline opens and closes the film. It reminded me of that “Twisted Sister” video “I Wanna Rock”. The good news is that Tom Atkins plays a great a-hole and chews heartily into the scenery. I love the guy! The bad news is that the kid (Joe King) is far from convincing and is of course…a tad annoying. At least, unlike "Creepshow 2", the wrap-around story only runs in the beginning and at the end of the film. It doesn’t pop up in between the stories to distract us. It’s harmless. Grade: B-
Father’s Day: “A dead father comes back from the grave to get his father’s day cake and take care of his extended family” This overly simplistic tale didn’t do much for me. It’s too basic. I will admit that seeing Ed Harris smoke like a champ and dancing like John Travolta on LSD was a trip though. I also enjoyed the flashbacks of the way evil Father demanding his freaking cake. JUST GIVE HIM HIS CAKE! Funny shite! It’s a weak start but the Harris vibe and the grim humor made it somewhat worthwhile for me. Grade: C+
NOTE: Why didn’t “?” just leap out of that grave? He/she could’ve made it.
The Lonesome Death Of Jordy Verill: “A backwoods moron touches a freshly fallen meteor and turns into a plant”. Another overly simple story that failed to captivate me. The title gives the end away, Stephen King’s (Jordy) performance is a little too over the top for my taste and in the end it's kind of depressing. I will say that I did find some amusement when it came to Jordy’s dream sequences and I did enjoy the shotgun blast effect, but apart from that, nothing to call the whore house about. If you have a thing for people turning into plants, rent “Troll”. You’ll get to see the late “Sonny Bono” turn into vegetation (hilarious). This is the weakest story in the film. Grade: C
Something To Tide You Over: “A bitter husband takes care of his cheating wife and her lover in a novel way”. Now that’s what I’m talking about! This story showcases great performances by Nielsen and Danson (wearing his real hair), some kool twists and a gnarly ending. Think a wacky version of “The Vanishing”. Solid writing, strong dialogue and a sly mean streak made this one the first worthy tale of the film. I will admit that I kept expecting Leslie Nielsen to bump his head somewhere but that didn’t hinder my viewing pleasure. Grade: A+
The Crate: “A crate on a college campus containing an angry beast becomes a tool of murder for a pushover husband” We’re on a roll kids! This segment is also very strong with dead-on performances by Robert Harper (Charlie) and Hal Holbrook (Henry), some slick violent fantasy kills, a kool monster, a few good scares, a morbid sense of humor and an annoying, yet amusing, performance by Adrienne Barbeau as the bitchiest bitch you’ll ever want to bitch slap. Grade: A
NOTE: Why did the janitor stick his hand in the crate the second he found out there was a weird creature in there? WHAT A MORON!
Creeping Up On You: “A clean freak tackles lots of slimy coach roaches”. Although this last segment ends a bit too abruptly and doesn’t have much meat to it, it still managed to entertain me with its ambitious (and gross) special effects and its multitude of tiny co-stars. If you have a roach phobia…WATCH THIS ONE! Grade: B
"Creepshow" didn’t live up to my expectations when you take into account the immense talent behind the film, but it still gave me a couple of hours of pleasure and eventually slapped a smile on my face. Sometimes that’s all you need. Open this comic book…
Not too gory but still decent. We get a nice twisted off head, a dude turning into a plant, some kool zombie makeup, a bloody gun shot to the head and lots of slimy coach roaches bursting out of some dude’s body (kind of gross).
Tom Atkins (Billy’s Father) is awesome as the barking father. Ed Harris (Hank) cracked me up with his tight jeans and big belt buckle. His dance sequence is a laugh riot! Thanks Ed. Elisabeth Reagan (Cass) is kind of cute and sure knows how to shake that bootie. Warner Shook (Richard) is way annoying as the too-effeminate-to-be-straight snob. Stephen King (Jordy Verill) plays a nitwit and I for one think he should stick to writing. Leslie Nielsen (Richard) is very credible as the vengeful husband. He gives an engaging show. Ted Danson (Harry) also comes through, I didn’t know he was that good of an actor. Both Robert Harper (Charlie) and Hal Holbrook (Henry) give sympathetic and restrained performances. Adrienne Barbeaux (Wilma) plays a bitch so well, that I was pondering on ways to kill her myself. Nice! E.G. Marshall (Upson) does the anal retentive thang to a T.
T & A
Nathing. But Elisabeth Reagan wiggles her derriere like a pro and you gotta love Ed Harris’ belt buckle (lol).
Romero’s camera angles are pretty straightforward but he still manages to inject some kool style in the film and perfectly captures that “comic book” essence.
A tacky synthesizer deal that fits the film like a BJ on a Sunday morning.
Even though the first two stories don’t really cut it, the overall product has enough heart, laughs, scares, imagination and good performances to please any gore hound. It’s light and amusing, and you can do worse. Where’s my Creepshow 3???
The kid in the prologue is none other then Joe King, son of Stephen.
The ashtray in the first story (Father’s Day) appears in all 5 tales.
Effect master Tom Savini has a cameo as a garbage man. He also wound up playing “The Creep” in "Creepshow 2".