As I’ve mentioned in the past, there are a special batch of movies I hold in a “holy grail” category. These are ones that I save and divvy out sparingly so that I can still have a few big ones appear on these lists in later years. And it’s no surprise that I usually put one of these up on Halloween. Well, here we are in Year 12 of this list, and Philip Kaufman’s 1978 masterpiece is one of those films. It could have easily shown up in Year 1 because it is a practically perfect film that still holds up to this day. Here is the brief imdb synopsis:
When strange seeds drift to earth from space, mysterious pods begin to grow and invade San Francisco, California, where they replicate the residents into emotionless automatons one body at a time.
I know there are many versions of this film, but to me this is the pivotal one. Everything about it just lines up perfectly. The 70’s setting, where movies just felt more visceral, adds to the overall desolation vibes on screen here. By now most people know the premise of the Body Snatcher movies, so no sense in going into that, but there are so many more reasons why this ’78 version is the one to watch. First up, let’s talk the actors on screen. Donald Sutherland, Jeff Goldbloom and Leonard Nimoy are in top form. But you’ve also got a fun cameo from Kevin McCarthy, the star of the 1956 version of the film. But in addition to the great acting, the smart script, and the perfect location of San Fransisco, you’ve also got the incredible special effects. There are still moments in the film that haunt me. The reborn clones are absolutely terrifying. And how can you talk about this film without speaking of the famous scream of the pod people. They are the most perfect inhuman scream I’ve ever heard, outside of Benning’s from The Thing (still my favorite). Anyway, if you haven’t seen this film, it provides that absolute perfect Halloween viewing, that pretty much everyone can agree on.
Where to Watch: Streaming on Shudder, AMC+, Hoopla, Kanopy and others.
Food/Drink Pairing: Any kind of meat from a cloned animal (yep, it’s out there), and a nice Halloween Pumpkin Ale.
Well team, that’s a wrap on Year 12. What a fun ride, as usual. Thank you all who have reached out, commented, emailed, messaged, etc. It makes the experience SO much more fun.
It’s been QUITE an October for me. As I usually say, I’ll try to keep up with this blog a little better to keep everyone posted on the many TV/movie projects I’ve got going right now. But bear with me, the more to talk about, the busier I am.
Just know I appreciate each and every one of you fellow horror fans. You keep me doing this list every year. Happy Halloween and see you in 2022!