Movies that are slightly off.
Are you eating it... or is it eating you?
Weird yummy goo erupts from the earth and is discovered by a couple of miners. They taste it and decide to market it because it tastes so good. The American public literally eats up the new dessert sensation now known as the Stuff but, unfortunately, it takes over the brains of those who eat it, turning them into zombie-like creatures. It is up to ex-FBI agent David Rutherford and a kid named Jason to stop the spread of the mind-devouring dessert.
Perhaps the quintessential Reagan-Era horror satire, The Stuff offers a Capitalist Realist reimagining of 1950's Sci-Fi Horrors of being absorbed and controlled, primarily The Blob and Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, realizing however, that corporate control of the food supply and the manufactured desire for its consumption offer an American Totalitarianism just as pernicious as any prior iteration. That this New Wave of Capitalist Totalitarianism may be set at war with the Older Forms of Paranoid Militarism is one of this film's many keen insights. Michael Moriarty has never been as winning as he is in The Stuff, a joy to behold upon the screen. There is also not enough Garrett Morris, but what there is is totally awesome. My…
I had to knock off a star upon this re-watch of The Stuff for the obnoxious military angle/Paul Sorvino, mostly because those few scenes take me out of the cold, calculated and extremely '80s capitalist/corporate nightmare both in tone and pacing, every time. Paul Sorvino wasn't a good fit and when he tried to apply a hammy portrayal to his character, it overshadowed and diminished the perfect, subtle undertones supplied by Michael Moriarty, Garrett Morris and even Larry Cohen-regular, James Dixon.
This was probably my first time watching a blu-ray transfer/restoration of one of my classic, beloved horror films where I felt like maybe it's best left on DVD? While the special FX were always b-quality level (but endearing nonetheless), the cheapness is amplified on blu-ray, but, it remains charming and maybe it will only add character to a cult classic?
Either way, I love The Stuff and I L♥VE Larry Cohen!
Hoop-tober film #3
A hybrid government conspiracy/sci-fi film, Director Larry Cohen's The Stuff delivers most of the 'stuff' expected for a film of this kind. Action moves along at a decent pace, and the leads (Michael Moriarty, Scott Bloom, Andrea Marcovicci) provide adequate performances in this Body Snatchers/Night of the Creeps/The Blob hybrid. Paul Sorvino and Garret Morris, in supporting roles, help fill things in a bit and the practical effects and editing provide more value than expected. The film is a bit of a throw back that most of the director's champions would consider his last true hurrah. Long live Larry Cohen, and be careful with your yogurt.
Wine, Beer & Tequila pairings:
W: Boneshaker Zinfindel
B: Karbach Krunkin Pumpkin
T: Don Eduardo Silver
Michael Moriarty was drunk throughout?...right?
Larry Cohen's The Stuff possesses one of the greatest opening sequences ever captured on film - a miner quickly deciding to eat oozing soft-serve ice cream/yogurt straight from the ground, no second thoughts...nothing. I also love the fact that he is appalled by his co-workers thoughts that he's eating snow! It's not snow, it's shit oozing from the ground! Don't be so silly...snow! Then straight to the idea of selling the stuff.
Damn! Moriarty hasn't even been introduced yet! Then when he is, he says a bunch of bad-ass shit on a boat and punches a guy in the face, really for no reason other than he's Michael Moriarty and this is his fucking film!…
No one is as dumb as I appear to be.
I'm a little disappointed after watching The Stuff because I was expecting to enjoy a horrible film and instead ended up watching a movie that is by all means better then it has any right to be. It's as if despite Larry Cohen's efforts to make a B grade horror film, it ends up being great anyways. Did he even know that he crafted an incredibly funny horror film that satires 80s consumerism to perfection?
As technically inept as it is wildly imaginative, and utterly unpredictable. Features Michael Moriarty with Pat Sajak hair and an inexplicable Southern accent, Paul Sorvino as a horny, racist, batshit retired Army Colonel, and more mind-altering white material than a Bruckheimer-bankrolled coke party at Tone Lōc's beach house in 1989 - it's definitely a Larry Cohen movie. Not his best work, hobbled as it often is by obvious budgetary issues, but thrillingly alive as anything else in the man's exceedingly loony filmography. My only real disappointment is that, despite his magnetically slimy performance in Special Effects, Eric Bogosian has been downgraded here to cameo duty as a grocery store stockboy. Although, five years later Moriarty would be tethered to the…
Ditto what I said re:Super 8.
King of the B's Larry Cohen delivers his satirical piss take of how consumerism controls America in this campy, trashy, low key creature feature that succeeds thanks to a devilish sense of humor and a pitch perfect feel.
Really fun movie. Great creature effects. The ending seemed a little abrupt to me though. I quite enjoyed it overall though.
Really dug the scene where the guy is getting pushed up the wall and onto the ceiling by The Stuff. Felt very similar to that scene from Nightmare on Elm Street.
Also, I spotted Eric Bogosian, who plays the greatest bad guy ever in Under Siege 2: Dark Territory, as one of the grocery store clerks that tackles Jason.
Also, who find a strange something seeping out of the ground and decides to immediately taste it?
I love that you can make some very good movies by just laughing at capitalism and totalitarianism. Needs to lose at least half a star for the uninspired last 20-25 minutes though
This was a first time watch for me so The Stuff held no nostalgia value beyond the little tingle of diab80's I get from any film from that magical era. Therefore I must confess that I got a little bored any time The Stuff wasn't on the screen. I found myself craving for that creamy white goo to come back and blow somebodies head up the moment the cheesy exposition scenes kicked in. It just didn't give me the creeps the way those Invasion of Body Snatcher films do when done well (and I'm a fan of those types of paranoid inducing films).
Definitely worth a watch though for the memorable death scenes that still hold up today - there's…
The Stuff is a clumsy b-grade featuring Michael Moriarty, an actor who I ashamedly admired in Troll, with his dance scene since becoming a favorite of mine. Here he's a clutz and a bigger bucket of cringe desperate for a response. Well he gets it, but it's an average underwhelming one. Larry Cohen throws together one heated mess of cheesy bacteria, with Moriarty as the unforgiving sleazy star.
The Stuff is a nonsensical and disoriented film, ultimately flopping at the absurd pacing that ejaculates on screen. For an 86 minute long film, it stoops too many times and feels quite drawn-out. There's fun in the cheesy performances and the ridiculous FX, but overall The Stuff is a silly and butterfingered experience.
Larry Cohen yet again proves what a wonderfully eccentric director he is,mixing old school science fiction of the Blob kind with a not so subtle hit over the head warning of fast food chains,gluttony,greed and how man would sell out another man to make a quick buck,even if it means selling some sort of killer yoghurt to your friends,family and children.The imaginatively entitled food product The Stuff is fast becoming America's number one food desert,with sexy promotion adverts and endless TV exposure the local supermarket's shelves are full of The Stuff,not only that but there is even 24 hour outlets selling it all day and night.The Stuff tastes great and can even make you lose weight and will make you…
“I kinda like the sight of blood, but this is disgusting!”
Indeed, the ‘stuff’ well represents the nature of disgust in its uncontrollable and addictive appeal that forces you to literally fill you up with it, until tastiness turns into retching, and the stuff must be vomited back out. Repletion can be satisfaction, but it can also call for purification, ejection of excess.
The film in itself is utterly and proudly ridiculous, and its self-awareness makes it almost a parody of a certain tendency of the decade. The first half lacks grit and , but it gets better in the second one, especially when David asks colonel Spears for help: the parallel the latter makes between the stuff and the…
This one has a remarkable killer. A white, ice cream like substance. Yummy. One lick is never enough of this stuff, because, as it turns out, it's quite addictive and has a life of its own. It consumes people from the inside. One guy has a really big mouth. Way too big actually. And in the end there's another fine example of gruesome body horror. The rest of it works best as some sort of an offbeat, goofy comedy. Michael Moriarty is solid gold as the industrial saboteur who goes out investigating the gooey danger and beneath all the silliness the story actually has something to say, I guess. Too bad Cohen messes things up here and there. You never…
The 2016 (2nd) edition of the list. You can see the original and more info here.
With a list of…