Friday, May 14, 2010
Scared To Death - 1.5/5
Scared to Death is another run-of-the mill early 80's monster film with an extremely forgettable title. I can see why Malone decided to make one though. Horror movies can be made for dirt cheap and make a good turn-around. He also was an artist that previously worked in a Halloween mask factory so he could easily save money by designing the monster suit itself. The monster suit is definitely the highlight of the film. Inspired by the work of H.R. Giger, Malone was able to give the monster a creepy presence especially in dark corridors.
Beyond the monster though we have literally nothing for a plot. A monster is on the loose in a city killing people in the night to drink their spinal fluid. The monster seems to be manmade (a "syngenor", standing for SYNthesized GENetic ORganism) and a reporter and a awful acting scientist are on its trail to kill it before it reproduces.
Like I said, no real plot to speak of. Again the story behind the film is much more interesting. I found it amazing that pop star/actor Rick Springfield was originally cast in this but pulled out the day before shooting began because he would miss too many "acting classes." This film might have more of a following if he actually ended up being in it. The film's budget is also a hindrance as it was shot on poor film stock resulting in a muddy and murky looking product. Even a cleaned up DVD transfer didn't help a whole lot.
Despite it's extreme shortcomings, the film did make a profit and it actually inspired a sequel to be made nine years later titled Syngenor. The DVD release of this film even had the title on the box art changed to "Scared to Death: Syngenor" to show connection to its better known follow-up.
Written By Eric Reifschneider