4.7/10
2,230
40 user 37 critic

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.

Director:

Tobe Hooper

Writers:

Tobe Hooper (story), Tobe Hooper (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brad Dourif ... Sam
Cynthia Bain ... Lisa Wilcox
Jon Cypher ... Dr. Marsh
William Prince ... Lew Orlander
Melinda Dillon ... Nina
Dey Young ... Rachel
Tegan West Tegan West ... Springer
Michael Keys Hall ... Dr. Cagney
Dale Dye ... General
Dick Butkus ... Lt. General
Joe Mays ... Dr. Persons
Stacy Edwards ... Peggy Bell
Brian Bremer ... Brian Bell
Frank Whiteman Frank Whiteman ... Young Orlander
Judy Prescott ... Student Director
Learn more

More Like This 

Night Terrors (1993)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.5/10 X  

A young girl travels to Cairo to visit her father, and becomes unwillingly involved with a bizarre sadomasochistic cult led by the charismatic Paul Chevalier, who is a descendant of the ... See full summary »

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Robert Englund, Zoe Trilling, Alona Kimhi
Djinn (2013)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  

An Emirati couple return home from a trip and discover that their new apartment has been built on a site that is home to some malevolent beings.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Razane Jammal, Khalid Laith, Aiysha Hart
Mortuary I (2005)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4/10 X  

A family moves to a small town in California where they plan on starting a new life while running a long-abandoned funeral home. The locals fear the place, which is suspected to be on haunted ground.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Dan Byrd, Denise Crosby, Stephanie Patton
The Mangler (1995)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.3/10 X  

A laundry-folding machine has been possessed by a demon, causing it to develop homicidal tendencies.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Robert Englund, Ted Levine, Daniel Matmor
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A boy tries to stop aliens who have taken over his town and are attempting to brainwash its inhabitants.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Karen Black, Hunter Carson, Timothy Bottoms
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A historic Hollywood hotel houses a supernatural evil. It's been subdued for decades, but when renovations start, a series of murders take place.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Angela Bettis, Brent Roam, Marco Rodríguez
Eaten Alive (1976)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

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.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Neville Brand, Mel Ferrer, Carolyn Jones
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

The grand tale of a zombie holding a arm. He also travels the world learning about life, and the meaning of it all. He also meets a girl zombie holding a body. Will they fall in love? Will they complete that human body? Watch and find out.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Claire Craft, Helen Leary, Theo Morrison
Eggshells (1969)
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Experimental allegorical story about a group of hippie students in Austin, Texas, who move into an old big house in the woods. However, something else is there and it's influencing them.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Mahlon Foreman, Ron Barnhart, Amy Lester
Crocodile (Video 2000)
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.8/10 X  

A group of college friends are attacked by a giant, man-eating crocodile while on spring break.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Mark McLachlan, Caitlin Martin, Chris Solari
I'm Dangerous Tonight (TV Movie 1990)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

When Amy turns an ancient Aztec priest's cloak into a dress, she discovers it's cursed and whoever wears it comes under its evil influence.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Mädchen Amick, Corey Parker, Daisy Hall
Lifeforce (1985)
Action | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A race of space vampires arrives in London and infects the populace, beginning an apocalyptic descent into chaos.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Steve Railsback, Mathilda May, Peter Firth
Edit

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:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The first draft of the script was written in three weeks. See more »

Goofs

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

Connections

Referenced in The Angry Video Game Nerd: Spawn Games (2019) See more »

Soundtracks

HOW COULD I'VE KNOWN
Written and Performed by The Word
See more »

User Reviews

"Spontaneous Human Combustion?"
2 January 2005 | by Backlash007See all my reviews

Spontaneous Combustion is a very sad horror effort from legendary director Tobe Hooper. I was hoping this was before Hooper's downward spiral of Night Terrors, The Mangler, and Crocodile, but I think this is the film that started that spiral. I'm still finding it hard to believe it was as bad as it was. Tobe Hooper directing, Brad Dourif starring...that's horror royalty right there. I found Dourif to be disappointing in this one as well. That was hard to type because he's so good in everything else he does (if you want to challenge that statement check out One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest). I think he should have just said no to this role. I was expecting a very dark film with a brooding anti-hero. What I got was a comical bore, and you can bet that's not on purpose. You reach a point in the film where you ask yourself "What in the f*ck is going on?" And the ending is pathetic at best. Not even a fiery John Landis cameo nor a radio voice-over by Buck Flower could save this one. Go watch Firestarter instead.


9 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 40 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 February 1990 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Combustión espontánea See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$5,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$50,367, 25 February 1990

Gross USA:

$50,367

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$50,367
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed