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Spontaneous Combustion (1990)

A young man finds out that his parents had been used in an atomic-weapons experiment shortly before he was born, and that the results have had some unexpected effects on him.

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Writers:

(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Sam
Cynthia Bain ...
...
...
...
Nina
...
Rachel
...
Springer
Michael Keys Hall ...
Dr. Cagney
...
General
...
Lt. General
...
Dr. Persons
...
Peggy Bell
Brian Bremer ...
Brian Bell
Frank Whiteman ...
...
Student Director
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Storyline

A young man finds out that his parents had been used in an atomic-weapons experiment shortly before he was born, and that the results have had some unexpected effects on him.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 February 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Combustión espontánea  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$5,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shot in eight weeks. See more »

Goofs

The position of the syringe stuck in Lisa, changes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Ring (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

YOU BELONG TO ME
Written by Pee Wee King (uncredited), Redd Stewart (uncredited) and Chilton Price (uncredited)
Performed by Patti Page
Courtesy of Polygram Records, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
The temperature is boiling… a volcanic firestorm.
4 October 2009 | by (the Mad Hatter's tea party.) – See all my reviews

Not as bad, as it's credited to being (Hooper's done far worse)… more so disappointing for me. Such an imaginative concept, which is never really tapped in to by Hooper with his economical direction and even less so in the smoky (excuse the pun) writing. It goes so sinister and over-the-top in a dead serious tone, becoming ridiculous and unfocused letting the whole pessimistic mystery / conspiracy-laced narrative being easily telegraphed to end on something completely abrupt. Because of that, the pacing goes on to be rather sluggish and Brad Dourif (cool to see him in a leading role) seems to struggle with an off-balanced performance, despite etching out a bemusedly quirky intensity to his off-colour character. Even though it's cheaply done, there's a competent technical attitude to it. However it doesn't seem to go anywhere out of the ordinary with its idea and wants to plaster in nasty jolts (which some do work) and strikingly steaming special effects (flames, flames everywhere) instead. Hooper does display some stylishly frenetic imagery (more so towards the latter end), and the camera-work is swiftly manoeuvred and the beaming score is titillating. The performances are bit all over the shop with the appearances of William Prince, Cynthia Bain, Dey Young, Jon Cypher and Melinda Dillon. Also Geroge Buck Flower and John Landis have small, but amusing cameos… especially Landis. Nothing surprises, but it's passably engaging.


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