Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Idiot Box: "TerrorVision" (1986)

This putrid 1986 piece of horror comedy features some familiar faces, as well as a completely laughless and scareless script.

Gerrit Graham is Stanley Putterman. Stanley has bought a do-it-yourself satellite dish system and wired his garish house with TV from around the world. Racquel (Mary Woronov) and Stanley leave to meet another couple (they're swingers), and leave Gramps (Bert Remsen) and son Sherman (Chad Allen) alone.

Of course, the satellite is invaded by a monster that was being disposed of from the planet Pluton. The monster can turn itself into energy, and travel from television to television. The monster kills Gramps, but it can regenerate the heads of its victims, fooling the really dumb members of the cast. Stanley and Racquel return with Cherry (Randi Brooks) and Spiro, a gay Greek swinger played by the totally embarrassed looking Alejandro Rey. Soon the monster is on the loose in the house, and Sherman is tracking it with Gramps' machine gun stash. The monster kills all the adults, but Sherman's sister, Suzy (Diane Franklin) and her boyfriend O.D. (Jonathan Gries), return and they befriend the monster. This nightmarish spawn of "E.T" is interrupted by a horror movie hostess, the police, and a Plutonian who travels through space to kill the monster.

John Carl Buechler, the special effects guy, does the monster here. It is terrible. It looks like all the other effects he has done. The film was executive produced by Charles Band, who has almost two hundred producing, and has completed maybe six good films.

The cast is awful. The humor is juvenile, making "American Pie" look like "Twelfth Night," yet the gore and violence are adult in nature. There is not a lot of blood here, every time the monster attacks, the victim oozes green slime (something never explained). Everyone tries to be very funny, but there is not one laugh. Not one guffaw. Not one smile. Not one half smirk. There is nothing funny in this film. Absolutely nothing. What does that leave? No reason to seek this out.

"TerrorVision" is just that. Eighty four minutes of bad acting, bad special effects, and bad scripting. I find it hard to understand the cult following this has received. (*) out of five stars.