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Joyce Van Patten
Heavily pregnant Lenore Davis tells her husband, Frank, that she is in labor. They leave their eleven year-old son Chris with their friend Charley and they head to the Community Hospital. Lenore feels that something is wrong and delivers a monster that kills the team in the delivery room and escapes through a skylight. Lieutenant Perkins comes to the hospital to investigate the murder and the press divulges the identity of the parents. Frank discovers a dark secret about Lenore and the baby. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Director Larry Cohen creates a thoughtful script about the effects of our environment on our reproductive systems in this thoroughly predictable yet immensely entertaining film. A father and a mother expecting rush to the hospital to have their second child. The only snag is that when the baby comes out of the womb it has razor-sharp fangs and claws with which it kills every doctor and nurse in its reach before fleeing the scene. The special effects are nothing too special, particularly by today's standards, but the film is full of insights and revelations as to what may be someday as we abuse our environment and use chemicals to sustain life. The father has a conversation in the waiting room with other expecting fathers. This conversation covers the ill-effects of pesticides, drugs, and other additives we use in our daily lives. The film uses the baby as a means to move action. With a distorted camera lens, we see things in the world through the eyes of this mutated infant. Initially the father wants to kill his beastly progeny. The police want to pump it full of lead. The doctors and drug companies want it destroyed to negate any possible backlash. A university professor wants the carcass for study when captured. Cohen shows us the underbelly of humanity. The people surrounding this infant are often no better than the child. All they want is gain...and it matters not at whose cost. John Ryan plays the introspective dad and does a fine job with this rather difficult role. He plays an ad executive who begins seeing the good in things and then slowly sees only the stark horror of his own life, his family life, his job, and his child. The other actors all do credible jobs. Cohen obviously likes horror as he names the wife Lenore and has the father talk at length about the novel Frankenstein. The production values and budget are minimal, but the film has a lot of heart where it counts.
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