A psychotic redneck, who owns a dilapidated hotel in rural East Texas, kills various people who upset him or his business, and he feeds their bodies to a large crocodile that he keeps as a pet in the swamp beside his hotel.
Judd runs the Starlight Hotel out in some sort of swampy place and is unfortunately a few slices short of a loaf. He has a crocodile conveniently placed on the other side of the hotel's front porch railing. The croc will eat just about anything, as the hapless guests of the hotel find out soon enough. A reformed hooker, an unlucky family, and the father and sister of the hooker all suffer various rates of attrition as Judd tries to implement damage control.Written by
Ed Sutton <email@example.com>
Adapted for the screen by Texas Chainsaw Massacre co-writer Kim Henkel, the plot was very loosely based on the story of Joe Ball (also known as the Bluebeard from South Texas or the Alligator Man) who owned a bar with a live alligator attraction during the 1930s in Elmendorf, Texas. During this time, several murders of women were committed by Ball, and the legend is that he would dispose of his victims' bodies by feeding them to his pet alligators, but it was never proven that the flesh found in the pit was human. However, Joe Ball committed suicide at his bar on September 24, 1938, when he was about to be arrested by the police in connection with the murders. See more »
Manipulation of light is obvious through the whole movie. See more »
The film received notoriety in the UK after being withdrawn as a member of the infamous DPP List of video nasties. For its original UK cinema release in 1978 cuts were made to the scythe murders, the beating of Faye by Judd (as her daughter watches) and flashback images to the earlier sex scene between Buck and Clara. For the 1992 video release the film was cut by 25 secs and retained the cuts to the scythe murders and the beating of Faye, plus additional cuts to the rake murder of Clara by Judd. In 2000 the film was passed completely uncut by the BBFC. See more »
Toby Hooper's follow up to his classic Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) was this atmospherically bizarre horror oddity.
Deep in the swamps, a crazed hotel owner is keeping a monster crocodile in his yard and occasionally feeding offensive people to it!
As with Texas Chainsaw Hooper gives this film lots of spooky atmosphere, but he really puts it into over-drive with Eaten Alive. The story is a bit disturbing and far more gruesome than Texas Chainsaw. The characters that parade through this film range from back-woods yokels to warped weirdos! Hooper gives the whole movie a kind of garish and bleak style that adds all the more to its off-beat weirdness.
The cast is good, Neville Brand makes for an especially convincing madman. Horror fans will see lots of familiar faces in the cast - Marilyn Burns (Texas Chainsaw Massacre), William Finley (Sisters), Robert Englund (Elm Street movies), Janus Blythe (The Hills Have Eyes), and young Kyle Richards (Halloween).
While Eaten Alive doesn't reach the nightmarish heights of some of Hoopers other films, it is a good B horror picture. For those looking for a twisted horror film it will more than suffice!
*** out of ****
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