Category Archives: Science fiction

Really Awful Movies: Ep 236 – C.H.U.D.

C.H.U.D. is a weird one. For reasons unexplained, the film’s left quite the pop culture legacy, referenced everywhere from  Aqua Teen Hunger Force to Clerks II, and of course, in The Simpsons. Why is this? Hard to say…It’s possible because while the 50s was the height of the monster movie craze, the similarly-themed C.H.U.D. was a definite outlier during the stalk-and-slash 80s.

The flick launches with a woman walking her dog in an inexplicably deserted New York street. She and her pooch are promptly pulled into the sewer.

We’re then introduced to a fashion photographer, George. He lives with his model girlfriend (that is to say, girlfriend who is a model, not the ideal girlfriend). His current photojournalism project is photographing NYC’s homeless population, some of whom live in a subterranean sewer lair.

Soon, Captain Bosch, NYPD, takes a personal stake in a spate of disappearances. Since many of the missing are dispossessed and down-and-out, Bosch interviews A.J., aka, “The Reverend” (Daniel Stern), who runs the local homeless shelter.

AJ, who has been poking around in the sewer and found items that include a Geiger counter, believes the events are part of a massive conspiracy. And since this is a 50s-style monster movie, he’s damn right.

While making barely a ripple at the box office in the 80s slasher boom, it’s still pretty fun stuff viewing it in present day. An A.V. Club reviewer was totally spot-on when he wrote, “Perfect for bleary-eyed late-night viewing and pretty much unwatchable at any other hour.”

Join us on the Really Awful Movies Podcast, where we dissect this fun creature feature. And decide whether AV Club had it right. Subscribe! And leave us a review on iTunes if you like what you hear.

Really Awful Movies: Ep 232 – The Incredible Shrinking Man

We’re used to titles summing up horror movies. The likes of Hospital Massacre, Sorority House Massacre, etc, don’t leave much to the imagination, and little of it is apparent in the finished product. The Incredible Shrinking Man, while not a horror film in the traditional sense, is pretty darn horrifying. An obvious title that lays bare the plot, belies a very interesting, thoughtful, and quirky little movie.

Yes, there’s a man. And he’s shrinking. And that’s all you need to know. This movie sells itself with a terrific premise.

Scott is on vacation with the missus, Louise. They’re on a boat playfully bantering as newly married folks do…and suddenly, a strange mist appears enveloping their craft. For reasons unexplained, the hull protects her from its effects, but poor Scott left on deck, is covered with a white film. Turns out, it was, like that Imagine Dragons ear-worm, “Radioactive.” As the band sings, “I’m waking up to ash and dust, I wipe my brow and I sweat my rust, I’m breathing in the chemicals…”

Soon thereafter, Scott begins to shrink…shedding pounds and inches of height. He undergoes a battery of tests, but there’s nothing that can be done.