Sunday, October 29, 2023

Tremors (1990)


More Monster Madness, as Kevin Bacon and friends battle giant sand slugs. This is basically the 1990 version of Them! and has as much in common with that movie as Aliens does. Though in a different way. Stop creating giant mutants with your nuke testing, guys.


First thing we see is Kevin Bacon taking a pee right off the cliff.

Our other lead is his hetero lifemate Eddie Guerrero, played by Fred Ward.

Look how RUGGED these guys are. This movie is the height of rugged. It almost reaches the level of Grizzled.
These two are basically handymen who cruise around in their pickup doing odd jobs and repairing things. They trade off on who has to make dinner and they rock-paper-scissors to determine who has to do what when they encounter a task they don't like. So they're simultaneously hard-working and also kinda lazy.

In any case, they hear that a female seismologist has moved into town, and Kevin Bacon rushes to meet her as he fantasizes aloud about her being a gorgeous blonde with "legs that go all the way up"

They meet the seismologist and...she's a bit homely. Eddie is very polite to her while Kevin Bacon can barely mask his disappointment.


In any case, Scientist Lady is here to investigate some unusual readings from the area. There have been unexplainable tremors that indicate something's happening that shouldn't be.

Our heroes are like "welp that sounds complicated so we'll leave you to it" and speed off.

Their town is Perfection, population 14. It's out in the middle of nowhere and it's probably barely any different from how it looked in 1902.

The corner store is run by EGG SHEN. Victor Wong (RIP) is my dude.

A nearby radio tower seems to have a guy sitting up at the top of it. Our heroes rock/paper/scissors and Kevin Bacon loses. So far he's lost every time they did that.

Wait a minute, that guy's a corpse!

They talk to the sheriff (who must have the most boring job in the world). Turns out the guy on the radio tower starved to death over 3 days. "Why didn't he just climb down" is the question. Something had him so spooked that he couldn't.

Scientist Lady is checking the seismology instruments and not only are they showing abnormal readings, they're showing a lot of them. Something's under the ground and it's moving.

Elsewhere, our heroes run into a blocked-off road. What's worse is...

...the bloody clothes of several construction workers are in the rubble. What the hell's going on around here?

Driving back, something latches onto their truck and tries to stop them. They keep driving, and once they get back to the town they find some sort of dead giant worm wrapped around the axel.

Later that night, these Random Folk are camping when...

...something yanks the guy into the ground! The woman tries to get away to get help, and they yank her car into the ground too (with her in it).

Back at the ranch! These horrendous parents are making their kid pose with the dead sand worm. Apparently it also reeks.

Once word gets back that the two campers went missing, the townsfolk put two and two together that deadly sand worms are to blame. Now they're gonna arm up and go out and see if they can find this menace and stop it.

Jason Hervey Of Wonder Years Fame runs out of the general store being attacked by the sand worm! My God!

Turns out it was just a ruse and Jason Hervey Of Wonder Years Fame has a good laugh. Egg Shen is not amused.

We get some incredible sweeping shots of the Rockies as our heroes go out on horses to look for the worm menace.

They find it, as their poor horses get gobbled up by a bunch of sand worms.

Now a monstrous giant sand worm leaps out of the sand! These things apparently produce all the smaller ones.

Yeah I don't think that .22 rifle is gonna do much against such a threat. GET OUTTA THERE!

After luring the mega-worm into crashing into a wall (which they kinda did by accident) Kevin Bacon is all like "FUCK YOOOOOOU"

Scientist Lady finds them and they check out the dead mega-worm. They can't see, so luring them to run into something works. Like a charging video game boss.

She's got some bad news though. According to her seismology data, there were four mega-worms in the area. So there are 3 more and they could be anywhere! It's just like in Them! when the scientist lady revealed that there were two more Queen Ants out there somewhere after they slew the first one.

Another one attacks, and they take refuge on a boulder. Turns out the worms can't climb rock, or tunnel through it.

This means...they're basically stuck out here.

....for a while. So this is how that guy ended up on the radio tower.

They wake up and Kevin Bacon is like "eww a girl"

Scientist Lady gets a brilliant idea: Pole-vault to the next rock until they can get back to their truck.

It works, and they're outta here! Except that she has to climb in through the window.

Tentacles! Tentacles everywhere!

She FLOORS IT despite not being able to see where they're going. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

They get back to the town, and one of the monsters is here menacing everyone.

My God.

"You will come out no more!" says Egg Shen.

While they run for it, the monster de-pantses Scientist Lady!

The monster seems to get confused once everyone is inside a building. Now, our heroes get bandaged up. Kevin Bacon is so awkward with this woman

Eddie seems to be pretty amused at all of this. This guy is a hoot.

But wait! The monster is back and now it's under the building!

IT'S GOT EGG SHEN! NO! this case it is Egg Shen who will come out no more.

It tunnels directly into the basement of the heavily-armed survivalist couple, and they're ready for it.

"This is for Egg Shen you son of a!"

"Fuuuuuck yoooooooou!"

Eventually they manage to take it down, with...

...this massive elephant gun. So at least we know they can be taken out.

There are two more out there though, and they're swarming the town now. The only "safe" place is the rooftops, since they can hear any footsteps on the ground itself. Meanwhile Scientist Lady is trapped on a water tower. The situation is dire!

Our heroes RPS again to determine who gets to run out and be a decoy (as they both want to) and Eddie wins. Again. I don't know why they even do this since Eddie always wins.

Kevin Bacon then elbows him and runs off! These guys are so noble in their own charming country way.

He ends up getting cornered (in the open) by one of the monsters and has to tiptoe around over it while it feels around with its tentacles.

Tremors: #1 Porn in 1990 Japan!

Finally they get ahold of this bulldozer and use it to rescue everybody.

Survivalist guy has pipe-bombs, just in case The Terminator ever comes true.

This lets them successfully blow up one of the monsters. There's still another one out there though.

And what's worse...

...this one is a little smarter, and spits a pipe-bomb back at our heroes. It proceeds to detonate all their other pipe-bombs, forcing them to abandon their position on this boulder.

Kevin Bacon draws its attention and sprints towards that cliff we saw at the beginning. The worm charges after him...and right through the cliff to its death! Once again, the rope-a-dope video game strategy worked.

They get a gander at the corpse, which is too gross to show here, and the scourge has been defeated. Yeah, this movie was basically Them! without the military involvement.

Everyone gets a change of clothes, and these guys are ready to leave town and look for work elsewhere. They're SO RUGGED.

Scientist Lady clearly doesn't want Kevin Bacon to leave, but he no-sells her like a shonen anime protagonist. This really is 1990 #1 Pr0n.

Eddie is over here rolling his eyes and sighing at how much Kevin Bacon is flubbing this. This guy is awesome.

Finally he gives in to peer pressure and runs after her. Hooray!

That's it for this one. I guess they ended up staying in the town after all, and these two got together.

This movie spawned a whole series of sequels, but Kevin Bacon didn't come back for any of the others. It was Fred Ward from here, which is fine with me because the guy was probably the best part of this movie.

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