Alligator (1980)

R  |   |  Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller  |  2 July 1980 (USA)
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Reviews: 97 user | 85 critic

A baby alligator is flushed down a Chicago toilet and survives by eating discarded laboratory rats injected with growth hormones. The small reptile grows gigantic, escapes the city sewers, and goes on a rampage.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Chief Clark (as Michael Gazzo)
Gutchel (as Sidney Lassick)
John Lisbon Wood ...
Mad Bomber
James Ingersoll ...
Robert Doyle ...
Patti Jerome ...
Angel Tompkins ...
ABC Newswoman


Ramon the alligator is flushed down the toilet as a baby and grows into a gargantuan monster by eating the corpses of laboratory animals who have undergone dubious hormone experiments, thus providing all the ecological and social subtext that one could possibly wish for, even if one doesn't normally go for films about giant alligators eating people left, right, and center--which is the inevitable and tragic result of Ramon's decision that the outside world looks rather more interesting than the sewers.... Written by Michael Brooke <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


At first, no one believed. But now, no one will ever forget! See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

2 July 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Aligator  »

Box Office


$1,500,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The oft-malfunctioning animatronic alligator used in the film was later donated to the Florida Gators as a team mascot. Ramon made several appearances before games and during halftime. See more »


When the alligator attacks Slade's limousine and the camera is on Slade, the car is continually rocking as if being hit. When the scene shifts to the limo driver, the car is still. See more »


Referenced in Humanoids from the Deep (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

* * * out of 4.

John Sayles brings as another memorable horror effort that mixes horror and comedy rather effectively. Giant alligator is flushed down the toilet as a baby and grows to giant size in the sewers of Chicago. Not finding much food down in the sewer, gator brings his act to the street and begins to make lunch meat of the city's population. Violent flick has a killer pace and never has a dull moment. Beware of the awful sequel though. Rated R.

11 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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