Wow, I enjoyed The Children far more than its quality merits. It’s a bad, bad movie. Bad acting, bad writing, technically deficient (especially the lighting — half the movie is almost impossible to make out) and nonsensical, it’s a poster child for how to not make a movie. Yet it is awesome.
Why? Well, how about the fact that is about nuclear zombie children that kill with burning, radioactive hugs? Or the fact that these nuke-zombie children look normal, except for black fingernails (OMGoth!)? Or that they can only be killed by cutting off their hands? Or that nothing in this movie really makes sense and nothing is ever explained? These are all contributors to its greatness.
So, bus full of kids drives through radioactive gas cloud, kids turn to murderous zombies, adults spend half the movie figuring this out, then the other half trying to kill them. When they die, they make these bizarre cat-alien-dinosaur noises. There’s a great shot near the end of a lot of children’s corpses piled up, hands cut off and faces twisted into weird, creepy death grimaces. There’s also a ridiculous yet totally predictable twist at the end I bet you can figure out if I just tell you there’s a pregnant lady in this. What is not to love?
The classic late-’70s/early-’80s vibe helps a lot too, at least if you have the same nostalgia for that era of shitty film as I do. Somewhere in heaven, there’s a double feature of this and Mutant playing.
Just so we’re clear, this is the 1980 movie The Children, not the 2008 kids-with-murder-virus film The Children, a much, much better film which is also very cool in a kind of quasi-zombie way.
No short today, due to a crazy late start.