Friday, November 13, 2015

Sometimes They Come Back

Director - Tom McLoughlin (Freddy's Nightmares, Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI)
Starring - Tim Matheson (National Lampoon's Animal House, The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again), Brooke Adams (The Dead Zone, Invasion of the Body Snatchers), and Robert Rusler (Vamp,  A Nightmare on Elm St 2: Freddy's Revenge)
Release Date - 1991
Genre - Horror
Format - BluRay (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     I'm not much on reading though I do try my best to read some so the television doesn't melt my brain.  When I was younger Goosebumps hit the scene and my curiosity for horror took over my life.  I loved horror and couldn't get enough.  I read all the Goosebumps books I could find and over time I made my way to the works of Stephen King.  King was a man I knew very well when it came to his film adaptations.  I was raised on The Shinning, It, Pet Sematary, and Silver Bullet.  These were films I knew and loved but his novels were something I could not get into.  Lucky for me, his work was continuously getting the movie make-over and one such adaption was Sometimes They Come Back.  This was a film I remember watching when I was little but I had no recollection if I liked it or not.   Recently Olive Films released the film on blu.  I reached out to them and they were kind enough to send a review copy my way.
     The film follows Jim Norman (Matheson) who returns to his hometown for a teaching job after an incident arose at his old school.  He is reluctant to return to his hometown but really needs the money.  When he was a kid his brother was killed in a railroad tunnel when a group of greasers were assaulting them.  Now, Jim has a new student that looks like one of the greasers that died that night in the tunnel with his brother.  Soon more students of his turn up missing and the greasers take their place in his class room.  Once they are all in his class they kidnap his family and plan on reliving that night in the tunnel all over again and this time with different results.
     Over the years I have tried to read several of King's novels and could only make it through his Cycle of the Werewolf short story along with the Dark Tower series.  The rest of his work is just boring in my opinion.  He goes into grave detail on trivial things that bore the shit out of me.  With that being said, most if his film adaptations are all worth a shot.  I even enjoyed the ones that most did not like Red Rose and Riding the Bullet.   The stories are always fun to watch unfold but my favorite part of the films are the characters.   Sometimes They Come Back is a prime example of that.  The characters are very detailed and most have alluring back stories that the viewer can not get enough of.  The acting in his one is great by the entire cast.  Tim Matheson is a name that you often hear in my house.  National Lampoon's Animal House is one of my all time favorite films, yet alone comedy.  He is an amazing actor and this film is no exception.  He is brilliant as an emotionally scarred man trying to protect his family from the greasers from hell.  As much as I enjoy watching Matheson on film the real star of the film is the charismatic Robert Rusler.  Rusler is known for being the suave asshole in films like A Nightmare on Elm St 2, Vamp, and Thrashin'.  These types of roles only paved the way for his fiendish performance in this film here.  He's savage and that is what I really enjoyed.  The film has several amazing supporting cast members but these two and there on screen clash is what makes this film stand out.  The story for this one is, oddly, not that original or detailed.  There has been dozens of films over the decades that follow someone or several people that were killed and then come back to life only to exact revenge.  However, very few films are follow demons coming back in the way this one did.  I enjoyed the aspect that they had to have a seat in his classroom in order to come back to Earth.  This changed it up a bit.  Finally, the film is not the type of horror film that relies on blood and gore.  Instead, it gets its chills from atmosphere and amazing characters.  The film also has some decent practical effects.  Sure, we don't see some gore but the demon greasers look fantastic.  If you didn't have chills running down your spine when they appear in demon form then you clearly were not paying attention.  Overall, Sometimes They Come Back is a very underrated King adaptation.  The film has a great back story to tie the viewers in with the characters and then goes full circle delivering one enjoyable movie experience.  This is one film you will want to see if you haven't!

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