THE BOOGENS (1981)
Article 3382 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 10-5-2010
Posting Date: 11-17-2010
Directed by James L. Conway
Featuring Rebecca Balding, Fred McCarren, Anne-Marie Martin
What it is: Old-fashioned monster movie
A mine in Silver City, closed mysteriously for seventy years, is reopened. However, it was closed for a reason… and that reason is now loose to wreak havoc.
Though it doesn’t have a particularly high reputation, I think it’s a bit of a breath of fresh air to find an old-fashioned monster movie in the middle of the slasher era. Granted, an old-fashioned monster movie wouldn’t quite have as much talk about sex as this one does, but even this aspect of the movie is fairly mild, considering the amount of sex the slasher films had. I like the Colorado settings and the snow-covered locations, and I even admire the way the movie handles some of its fake-out scares; in most horror movies, the fake-out scares anticipate the real ones, whereas in this one, the fake-outs only occur in places where a real scare has already happened, and somehow this makes them more effective. The monsters are a bit on the silly side when you get a better look at them, but that doesn’t happen until the very end of the movie; up until then, we only see bits and pieces of them, and even at the end, we never really get a good look at the whole thing. No, if I were to pick out the movie’s worst problem, it’s the title; I can see how it’s a condensation of the word “boogeyman”, but it scans so that the first thing you think of is of something you find in your nose, and that tends to short-circuit your desire to see the movie.