The residents of a suburban high-rise apartment building are being infected by a strain of parasites that turn them into mindless, sex-crazed fiends out to infect others by the slightest sexual contact.
A man tries to uncover an unconventional psychologist's therapy techniques on his institutionalized wife, while a series of brutal attacks committed by a brood of mutant children coincides with the husband's investigation.
A cop chases two hippies suspected of a series of Manson family-like murders; unbeknownst to him, the real culprits are the living dead, brought to life with a thirst for human flesh by chemical pesticides being used by area farmers.
A scientist living in an apartment complex kills a girl and uses acid to destroy her internal organs, and then kills himself. While investigating, a doctor discovers that the scientist was doing experiments on the use of genetically engineered parasites as organ transplants. Soon, other people in the complex begin showing signs of carrying the parasites, spreading the things through wanton orgiastic abandon, and the complex begins suffering an attrition problem. Written by
Ed Sutton <email@example.com>
The movie's filming dates in the summer of 1974 is revealed by the news broadcast of an actual labor dispute involving the construction of Montreal's Olympic Stadium for the 1976 Olympic Games. See more »
When the nurse escapes the French couple's flat and reaches the underground car park, she has blood over her hands and leg. However shortly after her car is crashed and she climbs out of the front window with the doctor there is no blood on her. See more »
[Radio programme tune]
Radio News Reporter:
The time is 5.26 a.m. This is Gerald Keys with the Media Sculp sunrise news bulletin. There is still no confirmation by Montreal city police concerning alleged reports of a city wide plague of violent sexual assaults. The assaults, believed to have originated in the vicinity of Starliner Island, began late last night, and have spread with increasing frequency this morning. Reports of the attacks have been termed irresponsible and hysterical, by a Montreal city ...
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competent debut, given the circumstances and time period
Cronenberg's directorial feature film debut is built around a now-familiar amalgamation of sex, technology, and medicine gone mad. The Canadian "Shivers" (original American release title "They Came From Within", aka "The Parasite Murders") opens with a slide show advertising a creepily perfect-sounding high-rise apartment building isolated on an island but just minutes away from downtown Montreal. We are told that the complex contains practically everything necessary to maintain a comfortable life- medical and dental practices, clothing stores, a gift shop, a deli, recreation, etc. Ideally, it would seem, the only reasons a resident would leave would be to work, socialize with non-residents, or take a vacation, if that wasn't too redundant. But of course, something terrible is just under the polished surface.
Cronenberg's direction is obviously not as polished as in later features, but we begin to see his signature style translated well into a full-length format.
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