man emerges from the grave for Father's Day cake. A meteor's ooze makes
everything... grow. A professor selects his wife as a snack for a crated
creature. A wily husband plants two lovers up to their necks in terror.
A malicious millionaire with an insect phobia becomes the prey of a cockroach
army. Mix the minds of King and Romero with a fine cast and the ghoulish
makeup wizardry of Tom Savini. Let the Creepshow begin!
"Get out of my way
Henry, or I swear to god you will be wearing
your balls for earrings!"
- Wilma Northrup
A collaboration between George A. Romero and Stephen King on five short
tales of terror probably would have led to expectations of a genre masterpiece.
After all, Romero directed two films that have been acclaimed as absolute
horror classics by both critics and audiences and Stephen King has written
many compellingly frightening novels in his time. Well, Creepshow's no
masterpiece, but whoever said it had to be? This one's flawed and could
have cleaned up some of its mistakes rather easily, but it makes for an
overall fun late-night film.
As in the case with many horror anthologies, they tend to have a wrap-around
story that bookends the movie. This one's pretty lame, featuring a boy
(played by Joe King, son of Stephen King) receiving a scolding from his
father on Halloween night because he's been reading a horror comic. His
father throws the comic away, just as a thunderstorm brews up. And thus
begins our five stories.
The first one is Father's Day, which begins in a not-so-good fashion. A
rather wealthy family is awaiting the arrival Aunt Bedelia, who's out visiting
her father's grave as she does every Father's Day because of her guilt
over killing him. She just could no longer stand his constant verbal abuse
and senility. In true Romero fashion, Dad comes bursting out of his grave,
and exacts his vengeance on his family. This story gets better as it moves
along, building up to a creepy and suspenseful climax, but it disappoints
a bit in its final rushed and semi-campy scene, but the story's overall
not bad. You can see a young Ed Harris, too, as the unlucky guy who just
happens to be married to someone in the family.
The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verill is the next story. It's a little funny
to see a title give away its ending, and this title actually sounds a bit
tragic. I've even read this movie's comic book adaptation, and the tone
of this tale seems to be played rather seriously, which is unlike the entire
tone of this segment on film. Stephen King plays the titular character,
a hick who touches a meteor, and with unpleasant results.
The third tale is called Something to Tide you Over and it's a significant
improvement over Jordy Verill. Ted Danson stars as a man who's having an
affair with a rich man's wife. Anyway, let's just say Nielsen's not happy
about it. To give anything more away would probably kill a bit of the suspense.
Suffice to say, Romero and King do a fine job of building up the momentum.
The final scenes are a let-down, however, sacrificing the suspense and
scares for a goofy laugh. Thus, this is about on par with Father's Day.
The fourth segment is easily the best and also, thankfully, the longest.
Entitled The Crate, Hal Holbrook plays a college professor with a bitchy
wife, and he's always having angry thoughts about killing her. At the same
time, another professor and fellow friend played by Fritz Weaver meets
with a janitor who's discovered a mysterious crate underneath the stairs.
The crate is dated back to 1834 and was brought over after an arctic expedition.
They open it up, only to discover something hideous lurking inside. This
story is easily the scariest and most suspenseful. One scene with a student
heading towards the crate itself to pull a shoe out to examine it is a
good nail-biter and the pay-off is chilling. The creature effects are only
so-so, but the suggestive moments will send chills down your spine. The
final scene to this story is the most frightening in the whole film.
The last story is called They're Creeping up on you, and it stars E.G.
Marshall as a cruel and wealthy man with a fear of germs and insects. What
do you know, roaches start invading his apartment in the thousands. This
one is pretty obvious from the start, which is never a very good thing.
This story's mediocre, but its final scenes are gruesome and creepy.
Afterward, there's the end to the wrap-around story. This one looks like
it could go somewhere, but ends on a sudden abrupt note. But it's not like
anybody really cared about this part of the film in the first place. Look
out for make-up effects man Tom Savini as a trash disposer!
King carried a toy figure of Greedo from Star Wars on the set for
King's son Joe has a cameo as the boy at the beginning who's a collector
of Creepshow magazine.
Krispies were used as as maggots on the corpse's eyes in the first story,
ashtray from the first story appears on the set of all 5 stories.
wrestling match on TV was being called by Vince McMahon. The fighters were
then-current WWF Champion Bob Backlund and The Samoan #1.
sign leading to "Castle Rock" (Stephen King's trademark fictitious town)
appears at the end of the segment "The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill."
on-set nickname for the monster in The Crate was "Fluffy". It's creator
Tom Savini, was the shorter garbage man at the end of the film.
Barbeau, who played the loud-mouth wife of Hal Holbrook in the fourth episode
"The Crate", was married with John Carpenter 1979-1984 and can be
seen in his films "The Fog", "Escape from New York", and
in his tv-thriller "Someone's Watching Me".
the fifth episode "They're creeping up on you" the film makers used
25,000 living cockroaches, some of them were sent in from Trinidad. After
the filming they were killed with natural gas.
and Romero made this movie with the idea of making enough money to eventually
produce "The Stand" together.