Beware! The Blob (1972)

Beware! The Blob (1972)

It’s loose again eating everyone!

A technician brings back a frozen specimen back from the North Pole after a drilling expedition. What he doesn’t realise is that it is a frozen piece of the Blob. His wife accidentally defrosts it, letting it loose once again on a small unwitting town.

 

The Blob is considered one of the best cult films of all time. It’s so bad that it’s actually fantastic in places (although I prefer the 80s remake for more a true horror outing and captured the essence of the 50s sci-fi flicks to a tee). Despite the numerously cheesy moments, it was shot as a serious sci-fi film and just became a camp classic thanks to the deadpan nature of the characters with what they were up against. It’s a wonder it took someone fourteen years to make a sequel but here we are with Beware! The Blob. It’s evident from the start that the tone is jokey and this is not to be taken seriously but this is where the problems begin. Trying to be a comedy and a horror at the same time, Beware! The Blob fails miserably at both.

Whereas the original was so bad, it was good, this is just downright awful. Directed by Larry Hagman, of Dallas fame, it’s clear why he never directed another motion picture. He’s pretty clueless in the hot seat and the opening couple of scenes are just confusing. There’s no explanations, no story, just people talking to each other. There’s no explanation of how this technician actually managed to get a frozen canister back to his house or what the blob was doing there in the first place. In fact it wasn’t until I read the synopsis on IMDB that I actually realised he was supposed to be a technician from the North Pole – I thought he was just some black, lower class American guy living for booze and fishing and that he’d stumbled upon the canister by mistake in the sewer or something. There’s no overall story arc linking everything together and no structure.

The film seems to be focused around the blob and that’s it. You’re introduced to a few people in a situation before the blob comes along and kills them before moving on to the next couple of people. The hobos in the street, the couple making out in the tunnel and the people at the hairdressers are just a few examples of random scenes thrown together simply to introduce new victims for the blob to devour.

The blob isn’t confined to the canister in the film for long which is a good thing and it’s soon sucking up everything in sight, including a really cute kitten and the two people living in the house. From here onwards, the film is literally a collection of separate set pieces a familiar pattern of ‘introduce character, have blob kill character, have blob move on’ comes into effect. The situations seem improvised as if they were making it up as they went along. No longer a spoonful of jam throw onto a miniature set, the special effects for the blob here look reasonably convincing at times and definitely a preview of what could be achieved later with the 80s remake of the original. The film does manage to pick up a little by the time the blob reaches the bowling alley but by then it’s too late and the film has already sunk without much of a trace. If only they’d have cut out the silly comedy elements and focused more on the horror and thrills side of it.

 

Beware! The Blob is a terrible sequel. It fails to capture any of the essence of the original (whether that was deliberately bad or not) and doesn’t fit together well at all. It’s a mess of randomly shot scenes thrown together with a big clump of goo killing everything in sight. Hagman clearly didn’t know whether to do a homage to the original, a serious remake or simply a 70s version with hippies instead of rock ‘n’ roll rebels. What we get is nothing but a pile of goo which even the blob wouldn’t touch.

 

 ★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

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