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

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Chief Clark (as Michael Gazzo)
...
Slade
...
Gutchel (as Sidney Lassick)
...
Mayor
...
Kelly
...
Brock
...
Kemp
John Lisbon Wood ...
Mad Bomber
James Ingersoll ...
Helms
Robert Doyle ...
Bill
Patti Jerome ...
Madeline
...
Newswoman
...
ABC Newswoman
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Storyline

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 <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Beneath Those Manholes, A Man-Eater Is Waiting ... See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

2 July 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Aligator  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Robert Forster improvised the jokes in regard to his receding hairline, which a delighted John Sayles wrote into the script during shooting for the other characters. See more »

Goofs

When Henry Silva and the gang member head into the alley, they see the shadow of the alligator against a wall, as it backs down into another alley. A moment later, when Silva investigates, the alligator bursts forth from under a mountain of trash bags. No explanation is given for how the alligator backed down the alley and covered itself with a mountain of garbage bags. See more »

Quotes

Gutchel: How about cats? I got plenty of cats. I also got a parrot I'd like to get rid of.
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Connections

Referenced in Unleashing the Beast: Making 'The Howling' (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Jaws goes to suburbia
13 July 2007 | by (Florida) – See all my reviews

This is the movie that Lake Placid wanted to be.

After the massive wave (pun intended) of underwater horrors that Jaws had created, Alligator is the best in my opinion. Sure there were a number of others that deserve recognition (Piranha, Jaws 2, Orca), but Alligator swallows them all up.

The reason is that its both sharply witty and frightening at the same time (which is a hard thing to achieve). The acting is good, with Robert Forster ringing the alarm bells about an over-sized gator living in the sewers. Our poor old gator was flushed down a toilet as a baby (you'd be a bit mad too...) and after feasting on some dumped lab animals grows to over 30 feet and is ready for some human munchies.

As for the effects, they're done really well. Direction is very good and the script is way above average for this type of fare.

TTKK's Bottomline - Alligator does for swimming pools (and suburbia) what Jaws done for the beach. Highly recommended for those looking for aquatic thrills.


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