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John’s Horror Corner: Humongous (1982)

November 11, 2012

MY CALL:  Ouch!  This monstrous slasher film just hurt.  Never scary, never suspenseful, only off-camera kills, dumb story and an aggravating theme…not even fun to laugh at.  [D-]  ALTERNATIVE TITLEDog Island—pretty dumb name.  Not that Humongous was a winner either.

In 1946 a woman is raped at a cocktail party.  Perhaps a little on the late side, she is rescued by a dog—that was random.

36 years later a group of five twenty-somethings go on a boat outing.  They pick up a stranded seafarer and then, during a dumb fight between two of them, crash onto the shores of an island inhabited by a lone reclusive woman and a pack of wild dogs.

While on this island folks start to die one by one, they discover the reclusive woman’s house and try to solve the mystery of her seclusion.  Eventually, they learn that she had given birth to a mutant son and isolated herself on the island to keep him away from humanity.  This is delivered to the audience with no real flavor, creating the sense that any details of plot presented in this movie are basically futile.

Like Frankenstein, our shaggy-haired Wrong Turn mutant hates fire.  Like a good psycho-killer, he just won’t die.  But like all such monstrosities, he ultimately dies at the lucky hands of a scared girl—the chick who didn’t show her tits, get drunk or do drugs, that it.

What’s bad?  Night scenes are gritty and it’s hard to see what’s going on.  But with acting this bad, it hardly matters if you can see what the actors are doing.  Then there’s the slow-moving grunty monstrous killer, through whose eyes we often see, but who we never see until the end.  This movie is never scary, never suspenseful, we never see the killing actually happen (except for a bear-hug and a face-crushing), and I found the strong dog motif to be nothing more than distracting, even annoying.

What’s good?  For me, nothing.  But I read several reviews that considered the mood and its complimentary scoring very effective.  I felt no such thing and found the simplistic 80s score to be little more than adequate.  But, at one point, a girl accidentally sits in the lap of a dried up corpse.  It wedges on to her and basically dry humps her.  This was my only laugh during the movie.

This movie is deliberately exploitative.  The opening rape scene is unnecessarily drawn out and, as quickly as we shift to present day (1982), we are greeted by gratuitous nudity—all in the first ten minutes.  There’s even a scene where a chick bares her breasts to warm up an injured friend who was cold—presumably hypothermic.

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