Thursday, November 8, 2007

"Humanoids from the Deep"(1980)d/Barbara Peters

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A Roger Corman-produced eighties throwback to monster movies of the fifties,Humanoids boasts a solid B cast,effective Rob Bottin makeup and effects,and the horniest mutant salmon monsters you've ever seen.Plenty of gore,boobs,intolerance,and hokey science delivered by a dame abound in this low budget gem.A remake was made years later for Showtime sans the sex,nudity,and gore,but the question arises:Why fuck with Corman gold?
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Doug McClure and Ann Turkel,both rocking the puffy vest.
Fishermen from the sleepy fishing burg of Noyo(where EVERYONE'S a fisherman,and everyone rocks puffy vests) have got a whale in their nets,only it's a pissed-off titular humanoid from the deep,who proceeds to make mincedmeat of the net,pulling one of the fishermen under the boat and treating him like human goldfish flakes.One of the other anglers tries firing a flare into the air for help,but in an instant jackass move(add water and stir),slips and fires it into the deck,causing the boat to explode,killing everyone aboard.Nice one,jackass,the humanoids weren't formidable enough to kill everyone off in the first place without you pulling a Jerry Lewis.
Peggy and Jerry are showing affection for each other in the ebbing surf when Jerry is pulled under the water.When he lifelessly pops up,his face looks like thinly-sliced pancetta.Peggy tries to outrun the amorous amphibian responsible for her boyfriend's death,but to no avail.The humanoid throws her into a pile of sludge in the sand,rips off her bikini,and treats her like a Bowery prostitute(insert porno wah wah pedal guitar).
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"That's right!That's right!Who's yer effin' daddy,bitch!"
Amidst the fishy sex and gore,there's Jim(Doug McClure) and Hank(Vic Morrow).Jim is a two-fisted,beer drinking environmentally-conscious fisherman.Hank is a two-fisted,beer drinking company man who fishes and hates Indians.The company is Canco,which has been genetically altering salmon with a growth hormone, sending Dr. Susan Drake(Ann Turkel) along to make sure their experiments havent grown into seaweed dripping,sex-crazed homicidal monsters along the way.Too late,they have.Oops.
When the humanoids kill the town's dog population,naturally Hank blames the lone Indian,dynamiting his house,and setting the stage for a drunken punch-up outside the local dance.In Hank's defense,he does wear a puffy vest also.
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Racial hatred also dons the puffy vest;Meet Hank(Vic Morrow).
In the meantime,a goofy ventriloquist is about to bed a local pretty young thing(with enough vaginal wool to knit your Aunt Beatrice a turtleneck sweater) in a tent on the beach.That doesn't happen.A humanoid shows up and cockblocks the voice-thrower,killing him and humping her.By the time Jim and Dr. Drake(who,by the way,shows her feelings for Jim by rocking a puffy vest,too)have caught on to the gist of the whole terrifying affair(The humanoids are mating with human females to further evolve.Brrrrrrr.),the fishy lotharios have set their sights on the local carnival,showing up in murderous schools of fishmen to murder the town's men,and rape the women,among them,this year's "Salmon Queen"(I wonder if anyone else sees the irony here...)who tries to escape,but the result is the same:bikini ripped off,fishman lovin'.Jim resourcefully uses gasoline to dispatch the humanoids,and all looks to have returned to normal the next morning,except Peggy,who was discovered half-alive in a bed of seaweed on the beach,delivers, to the dismay of the pediatrics doctors, a screaming bloody baby humanoid from the deep from her torn-open belly.Fishmen:1,Noyo:0.
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Is that a tentacle in your pocket,or are you just glad to see me?
Always dug this movie when I was a kid,maybe it was the cool creatures and gore,probably all the boobs and bush shots,but either way,it still delivers the fishy goods after all these years.Roger Corman has always managed to entertain the audience,despite monetary or artistic shortcomings,and for that,he remains a personal favorite.Check it out!
Two out of four B.W.'s

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