Deadly Friend

Deadly Friend

Deadly Friend is the third Wes Craven film we’ve reviewed this year in the wake of his death. Thanks to studio interference, we may never know what potential this uneven film might have had in its original incarnation.

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Deadly Friend (1986)

Episode 34, 2 Guys and a Chainsaw

Todd: Welcome to another edition of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd.

Craig: I’m Craig. 

Todd: And, uh, today we’re starting off with the third of our Wes Craven films. Well, we started out with, uh, 

Craig: The People Under the Stairs.  

Todd: Yep, and then we went to Nightmare on Elm Street, the original. The original. The original. Today we’ve decided to try something that’s probably a little less well known of his oeuvre.

Maybe for good reason. Maybe. Deadly Friend. You know, I came into this knowing that it was not critically claimed. But not wanting, hoping I wouldn’t pile on it. I sort of have a feeling we might end up piling on it, though. I don’t know. What are your initial thoughts after seeing it for the first time?

Craig: Well, I was kind of excited coming into it, too. Um, I really, I don’t know how I missed this in the first place. You know, I watch as many horror films as I can get my hand on. I’m a big fan of Cravens and somehow this one just slipped through the cracks for me. I’m a Christy Swanson fan from way back when so I was excited to get a chance to see it now that we’ve seen it Uh, my feelings are a little bit mixed really.

What do you think? I tell 

Todd: ya, um, well, yeah, I, I, now knowing a little bit of the backstory of the film, I know that this is not exactly the film that Craven had intended to do. He originally wanted to do something that would sort of prove that he’s not a one trick horror pony. Uh, he did it. Uh, this movie was shown to test audiences.

Um, apparently, according to him and the producer and the original writer, was a little more of a PG sort of film that was a little sweet, a little sad. Um, it’s 

Craig: Frankenstein movie, right? And, you know, PG may be pushing PG 13, but, uh, certainly not going for standard horror. And I think that when test audience saw what Craven originally did with it, they were let down just because of their expectations.

You know, this came on the heels of the great success of Nightmare on Elm Street from 1984. This, this film came out in 1986, uh, and I think it was just a matter of expectations. They weren’t expecting a PG or a PG 13 Teen Sci-Fi. Almost kind of after school special kind of thing. Far more, you know, uh, I, I read that, uh, he was shooting more for the tone of, uh, films like Real Genius.

Um, or, uh, The Goonies, or he, he, uh, referenced Starman as one of, uh, his inspirations. Uh, you know, when I watched it, I was 

Todd: thinking a little bit of Explorers. Did you ever see Explorers? Yeah, yeah. Where the kid takes technology This is like super genius kid, goes on some kind, you know, creates something, um, in Explorer’s case, they create that ship, which they go and then, you know, with his friends and they travel and kind of have these little adventures.

This was a little like that. You have your super 

Craig: genius kid. Yes, yeah, exactly. Well, maybe we should give a little bit of the story. I mean, it’s a, it’s a Frankenstein movie, uh, overall. But we, we open up with, uh, this, this kid, Paul, who is 15, I’m guessing, because he says later in the film that he’s never learned to drive.

Right. But he is a pretty, uh, exceptional 15 year old. He’s apparently a, uh, a visiting professor, uh, at Polytech, where he is lecturing on both, uh, computer engineering and neuroscience. And working on computers and cadavers. I mean, this is a pretty impressive 

Todd: kid. And he comes with his own robot. Moves into the neighborhood with this.

Sentient robot that he has put together and programmed himself, which everybody sort of treats like it’s no big deal. 

Craig: Yeah, like it’s his little brother who maybe is a little bit off or something, I don’t know. Well, you have this 

Todd: robot that, you know, just kind of thinks on its own and wanders around aimlessly and you didn’t really program and it’s learning and it’s talking and stuff.

Oh, okay, come along. Yeah, that’s fine. Yeah, totally, but you know. What’s more interesting is, uh, the day to day life of a 

Craig: neuroscientist child. Exactly, and you’ve got this robot, and of course at first the robot seems, uh, relatively innocuous, you know, nothing to be afraid of. He’s cute, he’s short, you know, he’s by today’s standards the technology is.

Uh, I, I think at the time, you know, they were pretty impressed with what they had done with the, the technology for this robot. But, by our standards, a little cutesy, a little, uh, Johnny Five meets Wally. Yeah, 

Todd: yeah, very, um, um, short circuit in that way. Yeah. Yeah. 

Craig: So he moves into the neighborhood and, uh, we get some exposition where he meets first, uh, this bumbling kid who’s going to become kind of his, uh, buddy in this little buddy adventure of sorts.

And And, uh, then the girl next door, the very lovely Christy Swanson, 16 years old. One of her first, uh, roles, wasn’t it? First, well, first full length film, I believe. And then, of course, she went on to be pretty successful in the 80s and 90s with, uh, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is her big, uh, breakthrough. But, here she’s very fresh faced, very young, very pretty.

You know, as a, as a young boy of the 80s, I remember Kirstie Swanson very fondly. Uh, and, and she’s kind of the maiden next door who is kind of tough and cool, but you can tell right from the beginning that, uh, there’s a little bit of a dark side, uh, on the other side of the street. That’s 

Todd: right, um, there, she’s basically right next door to him, um, in the new house, and, uh, the minute she meets him, pretty much, she can’t stay long.

Because pretty soon her dad pokes his head out the door and looks at them and gives them that look and you can tell just by looking at the dad their problems here. Oh, and the bruise on her arm. Yeah, right. Which is one of the first things that, um, that Paul, the kid. Exactly. 

Craig: So, then the, the story is, is relatively tame for a while, you know.

It’s, uh, this kid kind of getting used to his new environment. He’s teaching classes at this university. He’s, you know, kind of spending a little bit of time with, uh, this new girl. Her name is Sam, Samantha. And then, we start to see that there may be a little bit more to B. B. the robot. Uh, we haven’t said his name yet, I don’t think.

Uh, there, There may be something a little bit, uh, unpredictable about BB. 

Todd: That’s right. Well, they first have a run in, uh, with a It’s kind of like the neighborhood bully. Yes, the neighborhood biker gang. The Danny Zuko of, uh, Zuko of the film Carl, right? Yeah, who, 

Craig: you know, who look like they’re probably in their mid thirties, but are still high school bullies on this set.

Suburban Avenue. They 

Todd: come up and he for just sort of sort of no reason at all just that your typical neighborhood really is harassing him. What the hell is this? 

Craig: Hey, come here. Look at this thing. Don’t do that. Who’s gonna stop?

Hey, does anybody got a can opener? Hey! Don’t! Get out of my face!

Careful! It’ll hurt you! Ooh, this garbage 

Todd: can! Robot grabs him by the nuts and Lifts him up in the air and has him call his guys off, and so 

Craig: So it’s established pretty early on that, uh, BB can be a badass if BB needs to be. 

Todd: BB can defend himself. Right. As long as, you know, you move relatively slowly. You’re kind of within BB’s arm’s reach.

You get up against his face, you know, yeah, you got a problem. You got a problem. 

Craig: So, so we’re introduced to that. We’re also introduced to, uh, the old witch across the street, um Zelda. Zelda. It’s Elvira, wasn’t it? Elvira, yeah, you’re right. Elvira, uh, both excellent names. Played by, uh, the incomparable Ian Ramsey.


Todd: my gosh. From, uh, Throw Mama From the Tra Don’t Throw Mama From the Train. 

Craig: And, uh, The Goonies. Everybody remembers 

Todd: her from The Goonies. Oh my gosh. Mama Fratelli, and who doesn’t love her? I, I honestly, the moment she came to the door, I was just like, Oh, cool. Get to see 

Craig: more of her. Yeah. I absolutely love her.

Uh, she’s got, you know, that, that husky voice, she’s not, uh, a very, uh, domineering figure just in stature. But when she talks, she’s got this presence where, you know, she’s, she’s a bitch and you don’t wanna, you don’t wanna cross her. And so she’s the mean old lady across the street. 

Todd: Um, right. And then it’s, uh, Halloween time, I think, and they’re trick or treating.

Well, no, I guess it establishes because her, um, his friend Tom has a paper route. Yeah. And he tosses the paper over and she immediately, um, jumps out and takes offense to the fact that they’re out in front of her door. 

Craig: Right, and waves their, her shotgun, her double barreled shotgun, at them from her porch, as, you know, suburbanites tend to do, and kids get up on their lawn or whatever.

Yeah. Um, yeah. Chases them off. Yeah, chases them off. Uh, and, and from there, We kind of get into the trouble of the film. Uh, Sam comes over to Paul’s house. Paul lives with his, his mother. The father’s not in the picture, apparently. We don’t hear much about him, if anything. Yeah. Sam comes over for, uh, Thanksgiving dinner, I believe.

And when she goes home, she finds her father awake and drunk, waiting for her. And things kind of go downhill 

Todd: from there. That’s right. She goes upstairs. He’s angry that she was gone, and he didn’t know. Um, I think, what is it? It’s even Thanksgiving Day, was that right? Yeah. She just finished having Thanksgiving with her surrogate family, who they don’t know next door.

He pushes her down the stairs, and uh, She, uh, doesn’t wake up from that. She basically is in a coma. A brain death, I guess, 

Craig: was the assumption, man. Right. And here is, uh, where the Frankenstein conceit comes in. Paul doesn’t accept the doctor’s suggestion that there’s absolutely nothing that can be done. Um, being a neuroscientist and, uh, engineer himself, he decides that, uh, maybe there is something that he can do.

So he enlists his friend Tom, who is a very unwilling participant, to And they go to, uh, the morgue, where the plant, well, uh, they don’t know yet that her life support has been turned off prematurely. Uh, at first they think they’re gonna be able to get to her while she’s still alive, but that’s not the case.

And so, when that part of the plan is foiled, uh, instead what they decide to do is, Kind of casually steal 


Todd: body. Oh, and we forgot an important point is that, uh, during Halloween, before Sam died, there was an altercation where they were playing basketball. A basketball went across the street onto the porch of, uh, Elvira.

She came out, they hid and the robot controls the robot with the device, like a remote control. He shuts the robot off cause he doesn’t want the robot involved. The robot sort of comes to life on its own and approaches Zelda with her shotgun. She destroys 

Craig: it, right? And that is an important plot point and and it’s a very dramatic If you want to call it that maybe melodramatic be more fair a very uh dramatic scene where you know The friend tom is holding paul back while B.

B. gets, gets blown away. I think he gets shot three times from this shotgun. 

Todd: He just casually reloads. Starts shooting some more. 

Craig: And he’s demolished. And the reason that’s important, I’m glad you corrected me, is because, uh, Paul’s plan is to use the microchip from the remains of B. B. and put it into Sam’s brain, uh, and hopefully, uh, You know, he’s the scientist.

I don’t know science, but apparently, you know, that could work, so uh, So they give it a go. 

Todd: And it works, uh, to a certain extent. He brings him in, I know, it was just hilarious. You know, well you always have to suspend disbelief. Absolutely, yeah. This film kind of pushed it to the edges as far as suspending disbelief.

Even for the 80s. 

Craig: Yeah, I mean, and the funny thing is, you know, I can’t tell how much Craven was going for tongue in cheek. I have to think that he was sometimes because there are laugh out loud funny parts in this movie. But then there are some parts where, you know, apparently the procedure for Inserting a, uh, microchip into somebody’s brain is just to kind of squish it in.


Todd: just push it, you know. He has these probes jutting out from it, and he just, you know, I guess it’s just the right area of the brain, and they’re all the right length, they’re just gonna attach to the right spots. Yeah, and it 

Craig: slides in, he says, like, perfect. That’s 

Todd: right, it’s like, it’s like putting a spark plug in your car or something, you just slide it in and snap it in place.

Craig: Uh, and it, it, it works, you know, she doesn’t, uh, spring right to life, she’s not the Sam that we knew before. But she does, uh, show some movement and so, uh, they, uh, pack her back up in the van in broad daylight, it seemed, wasn’t it? It was very bright outdoors, I don’t know. But then they, you know. There 

Todd: are really very few people in this 

Craig: town.

Yeah, it’s a very sleepy cul de sac. Um, and they put her, uh, in the shed until they can figure out, uh, what, uh, to do with her. But apparently, as, as a little bit of time goes by, the chip does its work and, uh, she starts to reanimate and then she becomes a deadly friend. That’s 

Todd: right, that’s where the deadly part comes in.

It’s interesting because that’s, that whole sequence where he’s starting to coax her to life. Was when the movie started to get a little more interesting for me. That was where, for me anyway, it was a little more realistic. Like, oh, she didn’t just spring to life. He had to sort of teach her to sit up. And, you know, her eyes were open, but she didn’t say anything.

Uh, you could kind of tell that the old robot was kind of laying in there. It was definitely not her. She was definitely not recognizing him as his friend. 

Craig: Yeah. And, you know, that was, it’s funny that you say that that’s kind of where it took a turn for the better for you. Because for me, up until that point, I had thought it had kind of an innocent, kind of sweet charm, you know, you had this cute little budding romance between Sam and Paul.

The tone, you know, there was a dark side to it with the abuse with Sam’s father and whatnot, but, you know, she had kind of found this new surrogate family, she was budding this relationship with this new guy, and it was kind of sweet, and then all of a sudden, she dies, tragically, and, uh, he tries to bring her back, and, and the All the time going on in my mind was, it’s not her.

He keeps, he keeps talking to, he keeps calling her Sam. But even he said from the beginning, he was putting BB’s brain in her brain. And when she comes back, with some modifications. So when she does wake up, she’s got this great robot, uh, move thing going on. Yeah, 

Todd: she really does a good job of the physicality of BB.

Craig: I read that she actually says, That was something that they really wanted to get down. Now, when I read that, I was expecting, you know, some masterful performance here. I don’t know if that’s exactly what we got. Uh, you know, it looked a little bit like, you know, me on the dance floor after a few too many trying to do the robot sometimes.

Um, but, uh, you know, she made the effort, uh, and that was good. And there was clearly a distinction between, uh, Her sweet character from the beginning, uh, and then after she passed away and, and, uh, the robot mind kind 

Todd: of took over. That’s true. Um, and then, you know, and I guess I wasn’t really saying that, uh, the movie got interesting.

I mean, well, I guess what I was saying was, I agree with you that it started out real sweet. It had that really nice tone. It definitely, the tone shifted. Yeah. It got really ridiculous, I think. And then at that point where, you know, he was kind of teaching her to move and, and all that, that suddenly. For me, anyway, oh, maybe we’re getting, things are slowing down again, you know, was kind of how it felt for me.

There’s a lot of weird holes in this plot. Oh my gosh, yeah. I mean, well, aside from the fact that it doesn’t make a lot of sense, even when you sort of just suspend your disbelief and say, okay, yes, genius kid, okay, he can plug this brain in here, whatever. There’s also sort of a lack of care and concern from the adults around that, I’m thinking particularly the sequence where the mother and, uh, and, uh, Paul has his friend over, um, and it’s before they’re gonna pull the plug on the girl, and they know that this is gonna happen at nine o’clock, or ten o’clock at least.

And they’re not there at the hospital. You 

Craig: look tired. Maybe you should just go to bed. No. I’m wide awake.

I keep thinking about the hospital. Thinking we should be there. What could we do? Just sit? Well, I know, but

it just feels so strange. 

Todd: Of course, They’ve drugged the mother to go to sleep so that they can actually get to the hospital, but And there’s an odd, um, scene before that where they’re having dinner and he’s trying to poison her. Yeah. 

Craig: He roofies his mom, which is kind of, you know, I guess, you know, as far as plot devices go, okay, I get that, you know, need to get her out of the way, but why did he have a big ol thing of roofies anyway?

Who is 

Todd: this kid? He’s also a chemist. 

Craig: Okay. All right, fair enough. 

Todd: By now. Yeah. But that whole scene was, it was a very awkward scene, but it was awkward for the wrong reasons, you know? Yeah. It wasn’t awkward, you know, Because here, this family and this friend are coping with the loss of their friend next door.

That almost seems like everybody’s forgotten 

Craig: about that now. Yeah, it’s, it just kind of, I just felt like, tonally, it was all over the place. It didn’t know what it wanted to do. And I’m sure a lot of that had to do with the fact that much of it was redone in post production. Like you said, when it was screened for test audiences, they didn’t care for it.

The studio execs didn’t like it. They didn’t think it was going to make money. Uh, and so there was one, uh, exec in particular who really pushed for a lot of changes. They ended up doing a lot of reshoots. There was never intended to be any kind of significant gore. Anything with any kind of gore is cut and, and pasted in.

The death scenes were far more tame, uh, Elvira’s death scene in the, in the final cut is, is really graphic, comical, hilarious, it’s a hilarious moment. I don’t even know if we should spoil it. It’s so good. It’s worth 

Todd: waiting for. That has to go down in history as one of the most notorious death scenes in any film.


Craig: so good. It’s so good, it’s so bad it’s good. It’s that kind of thing. But I loved it. I mean that got me back on board after some kind of questionable things. So yeah, I can tell. I almost wish that we had a director’s cut. I’d almost like to see what, yeah, what he intended it to be. Cause I have a feeling it could have been a cute kind of sweet.

Uh, movie for younger people, and that’s what he was going for. And then these, you know, the, every dream sequence that’s in the film, and I think there are two or three, those were added after post production. They were trying to capitalize on the success of Nightmare, so they wanted, you know, things that were familiar, uh, to Craven fans.

There’s even, I would, I would go so far as to call it a Freddy cameo. Uh, in the Oh, 

Todd: yeah. Well, what has happened, I guess, once she wakes up, uh, and, uh, he’s kind of keeping her in the shed, There’s a really, for me, there’s a very interesting moment when she sort of snaps to the next level of brain function where she is staring out the window and approaching it, the window of the shed, which looks out on the back porch of her house as though suddenly she is recognizing it’s, it’s that robot brain melding with her human brain for the first time, the back porch of the house and her dad opens the door and You know, right on cue.

And, uh, sort of like clockwork, you can suddenly see in her eyes, she’s looking and staring at him and she turns her head and she looks and she stares at Paul and she looks back at the dad and he’s like, okay, now we’re gonna seat you back down here. We’re gonna close you up. But she gets out and she goes over to, uh, her dad’s house.

She sneaks out, um, as the robot or whatever, goes back to her old house, confronts her father in the basement. Again, another Cravenism coming back, right? 

Craig: You got the big, uh, in this case, it’s coal burning. You got the big furnace in the basement. Uh, every, everyone we’ve watched so far has had a furnace in the basement and it’s been a pivotal plot 

Todd: point.

And they’re not modern furnaces 

Craig: at all. No, this one is like a coal furnace with a huge coal bin. The 

Todd: fire’s coming out of it. The outside of it is hot. Right. And he, she lures him down there almost, that was a comical for me, almost like, uh, When she puts a little thing of bourbon on the steps, Yeah, she baits him, huh?

He’s like a mouse reaching for some cheese and she grabs him and yanks him down the steps. And basically grabs him, burns him to death, right? Yeah, she 

Craig: burns, she, well, she breaks his neck first. Uh, she holds him up against the burning furnace and you hear his neck snap and his head, uh, falls back. Um, and then it cuts back to, uh, Paul who is still searching the neighborhood for her.

He sees smoke coming out of the house from the furnace. He goes down and finds her there and she has put the dad in the furnace. When Paul, uh, pulls the dad out of the furnace, um, his entire upper body, including his face, is smothered. Severely severely burned and then later on just you know a few scenes later Paul has a nightmare sequence which of course at first you don’t realize is a nightmare But 

Todd: like a form coming underneath his sheets towards him right 

Craig: and when he pulls the covers back It’s revealed that it is Uh, the burned father reanimated, of course this is all a dream, and he rises up out of the bed in all, in exactly the same way that Freddy rises up out of the bed in Nightmare 

Todd: and a New Nightmare.

You could have put Johnny Depp in 

Craig: there. You could have. Oh my gosh, yeah. Yeah. And it, you know, with the severely burned face and the dark clothes, I mean, it, it almost was a Freddy Krueger cameo. Um, so you could see that Kraven was kind of going out of his way to, to do what the studio exec said. You know, I, I don’t know how much say he had in that.

And I’ve read that, um, in interviews, when he’s talked about this, he’s talked about, uh, some of the problems, um, that they faced with, with all these studio expectations and whatnot. And he said that the final product, he doesn’t know what to make of it. You know, it, it, uh, it is what it is. It’s kind of a hodgepodge of different things going on.

And, uh, and neither did the 

Todd: audience. Know what to make of it. Yeah. Really. I mean, it wants to be a horror movie at times. It gets really sweet actually, like you said, sort of for the first, uh, half almost of the film, you have this sort of romantic kind of interesting thing, and then it does have these moments of real poignancy, you know?

Mm-Hmm. . I’m thinking about, uh, well, let’s see. The father dies, uh, and he then hide, decides he needs to hide her, um, in the bedroom, uh, or whatever of her house. Mm-Hmm. Elvira from across the street, uh, sees her and calls the cops. And she ends up coming over and killing Elvira. Then he decides he needs to hide her up in his own attic.

It’s the only place he can keep her. Uh, and then he finds her, she kind of breaks out of the attic, which leads right into his room, so it’s probably the safest place for him to put her. And for the first time, she sees herself in the 

Craig: mirror. Yeah. And throughout all of this, I get what you’re saying about tone, because people are dropping You know pretty quickly on on the block, but nobody seems to be all particularly concerned about it Yeah, 

Todd: and and they sort of stopped looking for her corpse 

Craig: all of a sudden.

Yeah, and and you know Paul It seems to be more concerned about just kind of keeping her protected than More concerned than he is about the fact that she’s killing people now the people that she’s killed have been not very nice people Nonetheless, you’ve got this, you know, reanimated corpse who, you know, goes off, uh, at any time.

But, but you’re right. They try to maintain that kind of sweet relationship between them, and it’s suggested, That her humanity is kind of slowly coming back. So again, just tonally, it’s, it’s really, uh, kind of bizarre. 

Todd: And it doesn’t also make a lot of sense, because here is this genius who’s put, who’s engineered this chip, installed it in her.

You know, he’s first controlling her, turning her on and off like he turned his robot on and off with a remote. And then it becomes pretty clear the remote’s not working anymore. Why doesn’t he just tinker around with her some more? You know, instead of hiding her in the, he’s got her in the house. He seems to be extremely successful, uh, at keeping her hidden when, when she needs to be hidden.

Why not pull that chip out and do a little more reprogramming to kind of. Calm these, um, homicidal tendencies. 

Craig: Well, I don’t know what his plan was from the beginning. I mean, everybody knew this girl was dead. I don’t know, you know, how he planned to reintroduce her if he ever did. You know, maybe I’m questioning too much.

But yeah, and, and, you know, why didn’t he do those things? He kept leaving her to go other places, but I never really got the sense that he was going anywhere important. Like, he was going to pick up his mom’s dry cleaning. Like, is that really that important? Like, maybe you could make time for that later.

Deal with the homicidal, you know, robot person in your attic Well, 

Todd: when she’s established, uh, repeatedly that she’s, her strength, you know, allows her to open up doors and break down doors that have been broken into, he doesn’t even care. More stuff that just 

Craig: doesn’t even make any sense. And, and, you know, as much as I am talking about these things, and it probably sounds like I’m being pretty critical, I have to say, I’m glad we watched it.

I enjoyed it for what it was. It was funny, sometimes intentionally not so, sometimes, uh, not so much. But, you know, these little things that just didn’t make any sense. Like, in the beginning of the movie, B. B. is voiced by, I don’t know the actor’s name, but you pointed him out. He was in, uh, Nightmare on Elm Street.

Uh, it’s, um, he voiced Roger Rabbit, uh, in the Roger Rabbit movie. Right, and he played the doctor in Nightmare on Elm Street. So he voices the robot in the beginning, and many things don’t make sense. First of all, the robot talks and sings incessantly, but not in any kind of Coherent languages, you know, these funny little strange sounds But

Todd: it will not shut 

Craig: up no it goes on and on all the time like a babbling baby, right But as you pointed out apparently as much of a genius as paul is he couldn’t teach the robot english, you know It’s just it’s just nonsense stuff. But then when the robot brain gets put into christy swanson then She goes mute for the next 20, 25, 30 minutes, um, until the very end when she starts making the meat murp sounds too.

And I had no idea what was going on at that point. 

Todd: Yeah, it’s, uh, it’s very off. There’s, okay, so if you go back to that scene where she was, she sees herself and she’s sitting on the bed, uh, and he comes in and he sees her and she has tears in her eyes. Don’t 

Craig: you ever listen? What are

you doing down here, 

Todd: Sam? She looks at him, and is sort of holding up a picture of the three of them, the robot, her, and the boy together, like she understands. He looks at her, and you’re thinking, oh, this is gonna be a pretty powerful little moment. Paul, 

Craig: telephone. I’ll be down in a minute. It sounds important, it’s Tom.

I’m coming! Don’t you move. 

Todd: And he gets up and he leaves the room again. Ah, it, it It was like a moment that was supposed to happen. She’s even sort of approaching him. You almost wonder if she’s going to kiss him and he pushes her away way too quickly. There seems to be nothing going on in this kid’s head emotionally, right?

You know, other than, well, I got to deal with this. Now I got to deal with this. Now I need to lock you up now. Oh, I need to find a way to hide this or whatever. Yet, on the other end, they’re sort of trying to establish this progression of character with the girl and the robot. Right, 

Craig: and, and I, you know, to Swanson’s credit, I think that she does a good job.

I mean, you can, you can definitely see in her face when B. B. is, is in charge of the ship, and when a little bit of her humanity is starting to come back. You know, when, uh, when B. B. is, is in charge, especially when, you know, she’s on a, a, a, a, A rage. She’s very wide-eyed, and, and her, uh, movements are, are far more sharp, uh, uh, and more robotic when the more human side starts to come through.

She softens her face, softens her movements soften her eyes. Yeah, her eyes soften. And, uh, you, I mean, you get a sense that you see some of that humanity coming through, and you have to wonder in the original. You know, were they gonna get a happily ever after? You know, was her, yeah, uh, was her humanity going to come back?

And, and maybe they could somehow have some sort of existence. I 

Todd: don’t know. Or was she at least going to get something to play against? You know, like somebody who would respond to her emotionally so that we could see that, you know, and there was none of that. Yeah. It was way more focused on the horror aspect of the kind of the hunt and the chase and the, oh, she’s killed somebody.

Now we got to go find her. Now the police are after her and things like that. I think she takes off running and he’s chasing her through the streets at 

Craig: night and the police are also You know on in pursuit because two 

Todd: deaths on one street all of a sudden they discover the father’s body But at the same time they discover elvira’s body and then there’s that just that weird Again, one of these strange things that just shows how disjointed this film is Where he’s running after her, ends up on this sort of empty street, and Carl, the biker from the beginning of the movie, who we only saw once, who we suddenly see again, happens to come in and decide he wants to start harassing him again.

Oh, no you 

Craig: don’t! I waited a long time for this! Where’s your little friend now, huh, shitface? Huh? Where’s little BB now? He’s not here, is he? He’s 

Todd: all blown up! Which is just an excuse. For the girl to pop in, and for her to murder Carl. 

Craig: Right, it seems like something that if, you know, more effort had been put in, uh, from the get go, if they had a clearer vision of where they were going, this would have been something that would have got left on the cutting room floor.

Yeah. It just seems very much cut and paste, and 

Todd: But you know, from a horror movie perspective, She has run out of bodies people to kill. Yeah. Because she has already nailed every single person that as a robot or as a human, you know, was bad. And so the movie’s gotta kind of wrap up at this point, you 

Craig: know?

Well, and, and she’s also kind of started to turn on the good guys too. There’s a scene, uh, where the friend, Tom, has finally had enough. Which, you know, finally somebody has some sense in this movie. And he’s had enough and he’s gonna tell the police, Robot Sam, as Tom is, is leaving the yard, Robot Sam. out the window and attacks him and it appears that she’s, uh, trying to kill him too.

I know that this was another scene that was completely put in. I don’t think originally she was supposed to ever turn against her friends, turn against the good people of the movie. So, it doesn’t know, you know, it doesn’t know what it wants to be and it leaves me at the end Not really knowing what I want, you know, I don’t know what I want to happen.

Yeah the end there’s you know This long kind of police chase through town Sam’s on foot running you She can jump over cars and pick people up and throw them 30 feet, you know holding them over her head again Why does she have superhuman strength? I guess microchips do that. I don’t know. But then eventually, uh, the cops corner them and Sam, uh, is, you know, going back and forth between her robot vision and like human vision, uh, and you see the humanity coming out and she starts to run towards Paul who is being held back by the police and the police think she’s being aggressive and, uh, they shoot her.

Todd: In another thing, in another spot that’s supposed to be kind of a I think, because now she’s sort of at stage four of awareness, right? Now, you, you get the POV shots of, of her robot vision flickering with her human vision. And you’re almost starting to think, oh, maybe, and she says for the first time, Paul’s name, right?

Like you said. In her own voice, right? In her own voice. And so you’re getting to this point where, oh, maybe the human part of her is starting to take control. Um, and maybe there’s a turnaround now, a turnaround point. And of course, as a tragedy, then she runs up. Into the police, the robot. I think she’s threatened by the guns.

Um, the robot part kind of like sees the threat. She runs up to the police and the police shoot her. Which is, I guess, You know, you can fall down the stairs, you can be brain dead for hours, have a microchip planted in you, you know, no need for shocking your heart to life or anything like that, but once you’ve taken a bullet to the stomach, that is the end 

Craig: all be all.

Yeah, uh, and, and I, I, I read, I think that, you know, the ending was supposed to be different, um, I don’t I don’t know if she was supposed to get shot or something along those lines was supposed to happen. Um, but I do know that there was a scene filmed where they had a discussion about what they were going to do in the future.

And he was saying, We have to go away, I have to hide you. And it kind of ended on an ambiguous note. You really didn’t know what happened. Oh. Um, instead, We get probably one of the lamest endcaps, uh, from a film I’ve ever seen. Oh my gosh, boys, it was that bad. And again, this was the studio exec. Uh, I’ve read, you know, what Craven and the other filmmakers have said, and they said, you know, the exec handed this down, He came up with the concept, uh, he wanted it filmed a particular way, and they just kind of threw up their hands and, and went with it.

And he is a moron. Yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s awful, folks. You know, I, I think the, the film would have been better if they had just cut off those last few minutes. Oh, yeah. 

Todd: You could have ended it with one of those pull away shots going up into the clouds of him embracing her 

Craig: body Finally be kind of a bittersweet ending.

Todd: It would be kind of a frankenstein ending, you know The master kind of embraces his monster and monster’s gone and all that and but instead we get That tacked on ending where she’s in the morgue and he goes back. Why why did he even go back to the morgue? Pulling her body out again. Like i’m gonna try it another time And, um, suddenly she wakes up, comes to life, and starts strangling him, which, A, makes no sense.

And then, the face starts to peel away, the arms start to peel away, and it turns out that she’s 

Craig: mechanical inside? Yes, she has somehow morphed into some sort of Evil looking version of what BB was in the beginning. 

Todd: Yeah, it’s like a, it’s like a Daven Cronenberg’s Transformers. Yeah, 

Craig: it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s bizarre.

It’s bizarre, it’s not, you know, the effects aren’t even good. I mean, it looks like they put like a piñata head underneath some cellophane and, you know, just ripped the cellophane. Oh yeah, 

Todd: and then when she pops out, you can tell it’s a mask on her face. 

Craig: Yeah, it’s horrible. It’s bad. So what would you say is your overall assessment?

Todd: Gosh, man, I would love to have seen the original movie. I would love to have seen the poignant type of movie that he wanted to make. And maybe what the novel was based on is more like. But at the end of the day, I just didn’t care. Yeah, it’s like you said, it was, it was tough to get emotionally invested because it was all over the place.

I didn’t know what I wanted. And so I, I was just watching and don’t get me wrong. It like, kind of like you said, too, I was entertained. It wasn’t horrible. I wasn’t compelled to get up and flip it off immediately. But I knew there was going to be no payoff before I saw no payoff, you know? And so I was just kind of more curious, sort of as a historical artifact, you know, how 

Craig: this would kind of wrap up.

And, and I, you know, the, the first 45 minutes probably, I would never have seen that. said that it came anywhere close to being a masterpiece of a film, or even as good as some of Craven’s own better films. Um, but it had a kind of charm to it, uh, initially. You know, it was a bright, sunny neighborhood, and the score, you know, early on was kind of cheerful.

Um, it had, uh, Almost an after school special kind of vibe to it, um, uh, it reminded me kind of a little bit of the Boy Who Could Fly, you know, there was, you know, kind of some wonder and mystery, but it was cute and fun and innocent and then, I think that it was always expected to take a darker turn, but I think that when they farther than they had originally intended.

It just kind of lost me. Uh, so, you know, I, I wanted to like it and there are definitely things that, uh, I was entertained by. It was, it was funny, uh, in parts. Christy Swanson gives a good performance. I 

Todd: think, you know, it’s nice to see kids playing kids. Yeah. Absolutely. Back in the day when they’d have 16 year olds playing 16 year olds instead of people who are obviously like 25, you know, 

Craig: For me, the movie is worth seeing for Anne Ramsey alone.

And she’d probably get maybe, maybe five minutes of screen time. Maybe. Um, but just, I could just about watch her in anything. Um, and then her death scene, just for the sheer ridiculous nature of it, it’s worth the price of admission right there. You know, I bet it’s up 

Todd: on YouTube somewhere. Oh, I’m sure it is.

You could probably Google it, find it on YouTube, and just watch that. Yeah. Um. Don’t let your kids watch it. Right, but nothing is more absurd than that scene. Yeah, I mean No, I’m thinking of all the death scenes in all the movies I’ve seen. I don’t know how many 

Craig: actually top that. Oh gosh, no, it’s great. So, you know, horror enthusiasts out there, especially if you’re a fan of Kraven, I would say it’s worth the hour and a half to give it a go.

I don’t know that it’s necessarily anything that I’ll ever want to watch again, but we’ll see, you know, if it’s on at two in the morning on a Saturday night sometime. Well, and 

Todd: if you’re interested in catching those cravenisms. The suburban happy kids, the overbearing parents. Terrible parents again. And then of course, you know, the turn for the dark.

Um, and, and sort of taking care of him. Craig, uh, thanks for sitting and watching another one of these films with me. Hey, my pleasure as always. Hopefully next week we’ll, uh, tune in with something that we’ll enjoy a little more. Yeah! Well, let’s hope so! Alright! Well, until then, if you enjoyed the show, please share it with your friends.

Uh, like our Facebook page. And, uh, check us out next week. This has been Todd. And Craig. With Two Guys and a Chainsaw.

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