An American village is visited by some unknown life form which leaves the women of the village pregnant. Nine months later, the babies are born, and they all look normal, but it doesn't take the "parents" long to realize that the kids are not human or humane.Written by
John Carpenter had planned to work again with Universal on their long-gestating remake of Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), but the film's box office failure killed those plans. As of 2017, the remake remains unmade, although speculation began again with the announcement of Universal's "Dark Universe" brand. See more »
Mara's white tights become blue anklets during her first visit to the Midwich Clinic. See more »
Dr. Susan Verner:
Let's cut to the chase here... it has become an interest to national science that we carefully research and monitor their developing powers. I ask for another year's grant.
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If you haven't seen the original 1960 film, or read Whyndham's 'The Midwhich Cuckoos', then you might possibly like Carpenter's remake. It has degrees of suspense, and passable acting (perhaps most surprisingly by Christopher Reeve in his last performance prior to his paralysis), but these qualities are inconsistent throughout the film and it frequently falls flat.
If you've seen the original film then avoid this one, especially if you have read Whyndam's novel too, you will only come away from the experience with a sense of disappointment and feel cheated of the time you invested in watching it. This film lacks many things that the original had - great and consistent acting, tension, and suspense to name but three.
There seems to have been a conscious effort to add gore and violence, and that decision is perhaps the main reason this film fails so miserably compared to the original. The gratuitously graphic nature of the violence directly detracts from the suspense and tension so evident in the original. Whereas in another carpenter remake 'The Thing' the effects and violence enhanced the sense of dread, here they are responsible for destroying it.
There are other reasons that this film is quite dire, one of them being the narrative compromises made to attempt a recreation of the visual style of the original film e.g. the children all wear matching clothes which, in the original, was logical since in England children do indeed wear school uniforms. However Carpenter's US town sees the children uniformly garbed with no reason, other than to draw attention to their uniformity in a massively clumsy and illogical visual device.
Take my advice, watch the original and avoid this. It's one strictly for carpenter fanatics, not people who are simply fans of his work.
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