Q (1982)

R  |   |  Horror, Mystery  |  29 October 1982 (USA)
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Reviews: 79 user | 86 critic

New York police are bemused by a spate of reports of a giant flying lizard that has been spotted around the rooftops of New York, which they assume to be bogus until the lizard starts to ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
James Dixon ...
Lt. Murray
Fred J. Scollay ...
Capt. Fletcher
Peter Hock ...
Det. Clifford
Ron Cey ...
Det. Hoberman
Mrs. Pauley
Bruce Carradine ...
The Victim
John Capodice ...
Tony Page ...
Larkin Ford ...
The Professor


New York police are bemused by a spate of reports of a giant flying lizard that has been spotted around the rooftops of New York, which they assume to be bogus until the lizard starts to eat people. An out-of-work, ex-con piano player is the only person who knows the location of the monster's nest and is determined to turn the knowledge to his advantage, but will his gamble pay off or will he end up as lizard food? Written by Mark Thompson <mrt@oasis.icl.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It's name is Quetzalcoatl... just call it Q, that's all you'll have time to say before it tears you apart! See more »


Horror | Mystery


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

29 October 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Q: The Winged Serpent  »

Box Office


$1,200,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This was the first production for the new AIP (Arkoff International Pictures). See more »


During the police shootout with the serpent, the monster lands next to a cop in a basket dangling over the side. In close-ups, the cop is clean-shaven with no mustache. But, the cop the creature grabs and throws to his death has a thick bushy mustache. Clearly, there were no clean-shaven stunt men available. See more »


Jimmy Quinn: Stick it in your brain. Your tiny little brain!
See more »


References The Flying Serpent (1946) See more »


Let's Fall Apart Together Tonight
Music by Andy Goldmark
Lyrics by Andy Goldmark and Janelle Webb (as Janelle Webb Cohen)
See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent Movie
31 August 1998 | by (Milwaukee, WI) – See all my reviews

Writer/Director Larry Cohen is the genius that brought the world such classics as Hell Up in Harlem, Original Gangstas, Special Effects, and the It's Alive series. Nearly all of his movies are examples of low budget filmmaking at its best. Q (standing for Quetzecoatl, the flying Aztec god) is his giant monster movie in the tradition of King Kong and Godzilla. It's an excellent movie and succeeds best because of it's quirky qualities.

An excellent B-movie cast combined with Cohen's wonderfully realistic dialogue makes for some excellent characters. Micheal Moriarty (from "Law and Order" and Cohen's The Stuff) plays a loser who finds the nest of the beast, and Richard Roundtree (Shaft) and David Carradine (Death Race 2000 and Kung Fu: The Legend Continues) have excellent roles as two detectives trying to locate it before it devours more construction workers.

The plot has some great twists and turns and there's some great obligatory B -movie gore in this one, too. The monster plucks heads off of window washers and snatches sunbathers off of rooftops. Blood and body parts rain down on the unsuspecting citizens beneath. Meanwhile, some lunatic is busy skinning people alive. Is there a connection? The special effects are limited and not too spectacular, but effects don't make a movie (as is apparent in the 1998 remake of Godzilla), and everything else about this movie makes it a winner. The uneven effects actually add to the fun of this movie if you can appreciate low budget horror. Q constantly amazes me with its quirky attitude, great sense of humor (maybe the window washer's head "just fell off" says one of the detectives), creative characters, camp value, and energetic cast. This 1982 cult classic is further proof that Larry Cohen is nothing less than a god.

Final Review 98/100 (A+)

29 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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