24 July 2014

Shivers (1975)
87 min.
Directed by David Cronenberg.
With Paul Hampton, Joe Silver, Lynn Lowry, Barbara Steele, Allan Migicovsky, Susan Petrie, Fred Doederlin, Ronald Miodzik.
Stunning feature debut from director David Cronenberg.

Dr. Emil Hobbes (Doederlin) is one helluva research scientist. He's developed a strange parasite for use in human transplant operations.

Side effects? The devious organism causes its hosts to become uncontrollable nymphomaniacs consumed only with thoughts of violence and sex.

When the bug is let loose in the isolated Starliner Towers, a high rise apartment complex, it quickly creates an army of psychotic, sex-driven zombies.

Soon, it threatens to turn the whole city of Montreal into rabid, bloodthirsty sex machines!

Despite the low budget and some amateurish acting, Cronenberg (who also wrote the screenplay) succeeds in creating a stinging rebuke to the swinging 70s.

The film is helped immensely by Joe Blasco's wondrously repulsive make-up effects.

One can't help but notice (as Cronenberg himself has pointed out), there are more than a few similarities between this and ALIEN.

Personally, we like to think of it as Canada's deliciously randy response to George Romero's original Night of the Living Dead (1968).

Also known either as They Came From Within or as The Parasite Murders.

French: Frissons.

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