A mildly diverting low budget horror flick from the eighties. You could do worse than THE BOOGENS…but then, you could also do a lot better!
This 1981 cheapie is notable primarily for the fact
that Stephen King rather curiously gave it a rave in the now
defunct Twilight Zone Magazine, and because it took 16
years to be released on video (which lent it an undeserved cult
following). It’s about giant carnivorous worms loose under a
small mining town. No, it has nowhere near the wit or energy of
1990's wonderful TREMORS (another mutant worm thriller, though
leagues better than this one)…rather, it’s an old-fashioned
monster movie, and I don’t mean that in a good way!
Oh no! A man is discovered missing after he and his
buddy attempt to explore a long-abandoned mine. A search is
instituted, uncovering the possible fact that something evil is
loose under the town, a suspicion confirmed by the many murders
occurring around the area. Meanwhile, a young couple has just
moved into the area with their annoying poodle. Ho hum. The “Boogens,”
alas, don’t show up until the last 15 minutes…arrrrrrrrgh!
Don’t you hate it when it takes that long?
The competent but undistinguished direction was by
James L. Conway, a name I haven’t heard much of in the years
since. The film's snowbound Northwestern setting is a compelling
one, but is pretty much wasted, as it’s in service of cardboard
characters, a clichéd story and uninspired visuals. And why does
it take so long for the monsters to show up? To be fair, once
the silly-looking critters do appear things liven up
somewhat–after all, no movie about giant mutant worms can be all
Taft Entertainment Pictures
Director: James L. Conway
Producer: Charles E. Sellier, Jr.
Screenwriters: David O'Malley, Bob Hunt
Cinematography: Paul Hipp
Editor: Michael Spence
Cast: Rebecca Balding, Fred McGarren, Anne-Marie Martin, Jeff Harlan