5.5/10
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36 user 19 critic

Pulse (1988)

PG-13 | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 4 March 1988 (USA)
A visiting son tries to warn his father and stepmother that they are being menaced by a living and intelligent pulse of electricity that moves from house to house and terrorizes the residents therein.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Bill
...
Ellen
...
David
...
Stevie
...
Old Man
...
Pete
...
Paul
...
Howard (as Myron D. Healy)
...
Foreman
...
Ruby
Terry Beaver ...
Policeman
Greg Norberg ...
Policeman
...
Policeman
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Storyline

An intelligent pulse of electricity is moving from house to house. It terrorizes the occupants by taking control of the appliances, either killing them or causing them to wreck the house in an effort to destroy it. Then it travels along the power lines to the next house, and the terror restarts. Having thus wrecked one household in a quiet neighbourhood, the pulse finds itself in the home of a boy's divorced father whom he is visiting. It gradually takes control of everything, badly injures the stepmother, and traps father and son, who must fight their way out. Written by Cynan Rees <cynanrees@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The ultimate shocker. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 March 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Danger haute tension  »

Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$40,397 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Rockland's address in 1947 Kenwood, that is one year after Kenwood Electronics started. See more »

Goofs

When David enters the house across the street, an inner wall electrical box with metal conduit is seen on the exterior of a wall in a first floor room on top of the charred wallpaper. See more »

Quotes

Stevie: [about the dead grass surrounding the late neighbor's home] He blamed us for the dead grass, he thought we were going over to his garden and killing it... like there was some conspiracy involving the whole neighberhood against him
See more »

Crazy Credits

When the Columbia Pictures logo is shown before the movie starts, there's the rather distinct sound of a flame burst which is dubbed into the soundtrack as the torch on the Columbia logo ignites. This is a reference to the Pulse in the film taking control. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Goldbergs: The Other Smother (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Pull the plug!
12 March 2017 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Good, above average sci-fi / horror / thriller makes the most out of a fairly unique premise. Ever likable Cliff De Young plays divorced father Bill, whose son David (Joey Lawrence of future 'Blossom' fame) comes to stay with Bill and his new wife Ellen (Roxanne Hart) for a while. Unfortunately, this happens while a pulse of electricity - which seems to have become some sort of sentient being - is out to terrorize and destroy home owners in the neighborhood.

"Pulse" offers a fresh change of pace from the slasher films that often took predominance in the 1980s. It's written and directed by a man named Paul Golding, who does a pretty good job. Some viewers can take issue with the concept, or the fact that it's never sufficiently "explained", while others will appreciate the ambiguity of the plot. Assisted by a top notch crew, Golding is successful at combining a number of genuine jolts with some traditional suspense. There is some gore but not enough for more squeamish viewers to truly get upset about. Spooky music by Jay Ferguson and excellent special effects by Richard O. Helmer are heavy assets.

The cast is believable and engaging. For a while, Bill may frustrate some people by being one of those Stubborn Dummies common to film, but he's not an overbearing example of this type of character. The lovely Hart, and young Lawrence, are similarly appealing. Solid support is provided by Lawrences' kid brother Matthew (as a neighborhood child) and top character actor Charles Tyner (as a creepy old man who seems to know the score). Other familiar faces in smaller roles are Robert Romanus of "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" fame (as a TV repairman), and Myron Healey ("The Incredible Melting Man") as a helpful old neighbor. Look for Tim Russ ('Star Trek: Voyager') in a bit as a cop.

Overall, a solid shocker, that appears to offer a comment that we take our modern conveniences for granted, and that they can strike back and kick us in the ass.

Eight out of 10.


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