Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Hills Have Eyes (1977)

A lot of people don't realize that Wes Craven was really running shit before the days of Nightmare on Elm StreetThe Hills Have Eyes  and The Last House on the Left came way before then and are arguably comparable movies to NOES.

The Hills Have Eyes is about a family traveling to California in an RV.  They stop at a hick gas station and ask directions to an old silver mine.  The proprietor tells them to stay away (that would be your first clue) but they insist.  Predictably, they get lost and run out of gas, and are in the range of crazed desert cannibals.

They set up camp having no idea that they are now the hunted.  The middle-aged dad/grandpa takes off for the gas station which is probably not the best plan.  The rest set up camp and chill out.  In fact, they're so relaxed about this situation (gotta love the 70s) that one couple takes off for the station wagon to make whoopie.

Meanwhile, the cannibals have other plans.  They've zeroed in on the RV and are psyched to know that it not only contains several adults and food, but the most prized cannibal treat, a BABY.  They swarm in, while the younger members of the fam attempt to strike back.  Humans vs. Cannibals cage match ensues.

This is definitely a classic.  I'm sure horror fans are wondering how I felt about the remake.  I've never reviewed it, but I should give it another watch.  I saw it in the theaters when it first came out and I can say that I did like the special effects and backstory regarding the radiation.  That was badass.  But I do get turned off at the sight of the same generic screaming teenagers and their nonsense.  You can't replicate Dee Wallace or Michael Berryman.
photo credit