Parts: The Clonus Horror (1979)

Article 4906 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 8-21-2015
Directed by Robert S. Fiveson
Featuring Tim Donnelly, Paulette Breen, Peter Graves
Country: USA
What it is: Science fiction conspiracy

A group of young men and women are brought up to practice physical fitness in isolation with the promise that when they’re ready, they will be sent to live in the Utopian world of America. One of the young men becomes curious about the secrets being kept from them, and decides to escape to America to find out the truth.

This movie currently has a fairly low rating of 3.4 on IMDB, and this is partly due to the fact that MST3K fans tend to give bad ratings to every movie they did. I think the movie is a little better than that; it does have an interesting premise that combines the concept of cloning with that of another concept (which I won’t give away here because it’s the big surprise of the movie) that doesn’t pop up very often, and it fits it neatly with the conspiracy movies of the era. It is, however, not really very convincing; it’s full of little errors in logic and unanswered questions that tend to build up over the length of the movie. I kept finding myself asking nagging questions, such as: why does the main character become suspicious that he’s being watched when he has no doubt been watched his entire life? Why is it so easy for him to infiltrate a building whose security should be much higher than it is? Why do some of the villains of the piece ACT like villains when it would be much better to take a kindly and friendly tone with those they deal with? I do get the sense that a certain amount of thought went into the script, but not nearly enough to make the movie convincing as a whole. Certain scenes are handled so badly that they become laughable; this is probably due to the fact that the budget was rather small and it was the director’s first stab at a feature film. Ultimately, it’s one of those movies in which a strong premise is hamstringed by a weak production.


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