Written & Directed by John Carpenter
Alive Films/Larry Franco Productions
This picture, though certainly not a “horror comedy,” definitely includes comedic elements, in addition to its absurdist dialogue. Now, I don’t mean to disparage the writing of “Martin Quatermass,” but the plot of this flick concerns Satan’s dad being a type of antimatter, manifesting his offspring as a sentient liquid, buried in a magical canister at the behest of intergalactic interloper “Jesus Christ,” with warning messages transmitted via dreams based on a hypothetical physics particle. Yea, discursions amongst the major players in this drama get a bit unwieldy. Elements – pun unintended! – of this production recur in They LIve and In the Mouth of Madness. (Allegedly, The Thing, this, and “Madness” constitute a “trilogy.”)
I frankly wasn’t interested in taking a gander at anything else I had pending, and this title popped up somewhere.
It’s not what one might expect from the title, I’ll give it that.
The script is sui generis; one could pick almost any random moment and find ponderousness. I did just that; here’s what I got:
“So what is the dream? Precognition? Previous knowledge of a future event?
A shared vision of something that is yet to occur.”
“Caused by that thing downstairs?”
“A tachyon is a subatomic particle that travels faster than light.”
Donald Pleasence outdoes himself as, uh, “Priest,” getting so overwrought one might almost believe he Believes. (At the end of this affair, his lack of concern for what may have happened to anyone else is a nice touch.) The Prince’s method of transmitting his evil influence to others is peculiar – though reasonable given his limitations as, you know, a liquid – and disconcerting.