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EVIL SPAWN - 1 Slime
Not Rated
Copyright 1987 American Independent Productions
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 24 November 2001

The Characters:  

  • Lynn Roman - Aging actress that cannot understand why the offers to star in movies have ceased. Maybe it's because she has to rely on, now that her looks are gone, her acting talent and that SUCKS. Turns into a bipedal insect before being shot.
  • Ross - The writer who has always loved Lynn and is now working on a biography. Killed by something (I don't know, it's a something) bursting from his chest.
  • Elaine - Hired as Lynn's secretary for her ability to forge the actress' signature on fan photographs. Monster chow.
  • Harry - Of all the dirty, sneaky, little weasels to hire as your agent. Lynn gets him good.
  • Brent - The latest lover to be taken by Lynn. Apparently she likes her boy toys monogamous; a claw rips out his cheating heart.
  • Tracy - She had better keep that day job (as Brent's floozy), because she will never make it as an exotic dancer. Presumed to be kibble; the flayed corpse that Ross finds in a tree might be her, it's skinny enough.
  • Dr. Zeitman - John Carradine! Once a genius scientist, now a study in euthanasia.
  • Evelyn - Unbalanced assistant to Dr. Zeitman who wants Lynn, her idol, to remain young forever. Blows her own brains out.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

Music befitting (read: heavily influenced by, stolen, ripped-off from) John Carpenter's "The Thing" begins with the opening credits. They inform us that a probe sent to Venus has brought back alien life, the use of which is the subject of our film. Next we cut to a lab where the samples are being studied. Somehow Evelyn, she of very dubious mental health, came to be a part of the project. While another researcher works late in the lab, psycho woman opens the metal box that holds an ugly critter and then locks the doors. As would be expected, it chews up the poor fellow, but he is not dead. The victim starts mutating and finds his way out of the lab where a young couple runs afoul of the "beast." Mayhem results and the boy has his arm pulled off, then the girl crushes the creature between a wall and their jeep. Apparently the mutation moved alien boy's heart, or some other vital organ, into his legs, because he dies instantly.

Evelyn stole a sample of the alien microbes when she left the lab. She visits Dr. Zeitman and they have what must be one of the most disjointed conversations I've ever heard. My grandmother had Alzheimer's so bad that she even forgot who I was; we still had more coherent conversations than the two characters at hand. At the end of the scene Zeitman dies, apparently of old age.

The real horror begins with Lynn's introduction. From here on out the writer wanted us to feel sorry for the woman. She has committed a crime among female actors: she aged. That means lots of screen time to build her character, dependent solely upon the actress being able to carry the scene. I kid you not, the acting is awful and everyone is guilty. Remove the few scenes where a monster attacks someone, loop the movie, and you have a hideous instrument of torture.

Anyway, about Lynn: she has not been given a decent part in some time and things are looking bad. When you are a Hollywood sex goddess and the pool boy is a senior citizen... ...well, things are bad. Evelyn mysteriously appears with her offer of a new serum that will restore youth and vitality, but the actress is initially dubious and refuses. Wouldn't you? Think about it; if someone ever invents boosterspice then keeping the discovery quiet is going to be impossible. There are an awful lot of rich old men who would be rich young men the next morning (Mr. Hefner would probably be first in line). The curse of years is really hanging heavy on Mrs. Roman's mind though. She has a nightmare about spontaneously turning into a rotting corpse. Jolted awake, she injects herself with the drug and immediately has a violent reaction.

More problems arise the next morning (for us, the viewers - we're the real victims here) as Lynn admires her newfound youth. She doesn't look any younger than the previous day! Arrggghhhh! I guess that we are supposed to use our imaginations. And there is more padding as Lynn chats up a director friend in hopes of landing a lead role. Lucky for us heterosexual males, right about now Elaine decides to go swimming. The nubile secretary is not hard on the eyes at all, especially after casting off her swimsuit. Rooowwwwlllll!

Lynn's business date is a total disaster, she almost begs for the female lead in "Savage Goddess" at its conclusion. When the distraught woman returns home the words echoing in her head are a description of the actress they want to play the part. It matches Elaine (still swimming nude, bless her heart) perfectly. You should have realized by now that the young lady is not long for this world. Lynn transforms and, in a fit of jealous woman-mutant rage, savages her assistant.

A radio report gives Ross, who was uncomfortable with the serum treatment, all the pieces of the puzzle. Evelyn is wanted on murder charges in connection with the deaths of Dr. Zeitman and the poor lab worker from the beginning. He quickly visits Lynn to tell her that she is screwed. Her reaction is to totally freak out and visit Harry's office. Once there, the vengeful actress gives herself a fresh injection and leaves Harry looking like he was attacked by a swarm of bees.

Meanwhile, back at Lynn's mansion, Brent is entertaining his latest sperm receptacle in the living room! Honestly, what sort of rich moron decides to cheat on his girlfriend in her own house? It is a bad idea, even when she cannot turn into a mutant insect. After an atrocious "erotic dance" scene (I would stick a wallet in the girl's mouth if she started jerking around like that) the two illicit lovers try to get down to business. The ominous buzzing, coming from outside, worries the girl and she quickly loses the urge to fornicate. The creature's appearance means that Brent and Company had better hope there is sex in the afterlife, 'cause they sure ain't gettin' no more in this one.

Ross and two police officers confront the monster near the pool, but communication is unsuccessful and the biographer is wounded. Gunfire from the cops kills the beast, leaving Ross to write his story about a woman who could not accept her waning youth.

I had waited for years to see this remake of "The Wasp Woman." Should time travel ever become commonplace, I think that warning my younger self of this folly will be high on the list. Between expeditions to the Paleozoic and Mesozoic of course, because I'm going to catch a dragonfly two feet long - just to show mom. Oh well, reality is a cruel master. The monster suit is pretty good considering the obvious budget constraints; the problem is its appearances are few and far between. Other than that, the audience suffers through lots of plot development. Long, hard suffering.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Mutant hand puppets should be kept in a secure cage.
  • "Finding her lost cat" nookie is just as good as make-up sex.
  • Early morning coitus may result in temporary hearing loss.
  • Drugs will cause you to spit up milk.
  • Wait at least thirty minutes after being mauled before getting in the pool. (It's not so much a problem of cramping as of clotting.)
  • Drinking blood causes the worst hangover.
  • Killing your agent is not the best way to kick start a stagnant film career.
  • Bullets, when fired by policemen, will only hit the intended target or nearby potted plants.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • Opening Credits - Did you read all the stuff about a probe returning from Venus with alien microbes? Good, now forget it. This has no bearing on the plot at all.
  • 9 mins - You were infected by an extraterrestrial mutagen on graduation night?
  • 20 mins - Lynn's drink looks suspiciously like water...
  • 23 mins - No more "acting!" Stop! Stop right now before I sic the ghost of er... ...somebody who can act on you!
  • 36 mins - You look the same as yesterday. Nevermind, here goes the top.
  • 37 mins - RANDOM GRATUITOUS BREAST SHOT!
  • 46 mins - RANDOM GRATUITOUS BREAST SHOT!
  • 50 mins - Where in the hell is MacReady? Has anybody seen Fuchs? Man, this music is driving me nuts.

Quotes: 

  • Lynn: "Well at least let me read."
    Director: "The answer is no; under no circumstances can you read for 'The Savage Goddess!' You're not right for the part and you're just too damn old."

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

FileDialog
Green Music Note evilspawn1.wav Lynn: "What is this? 'The She Demon?' 'Imperial Productions?' Isn't that an independent? Ah! Aren't they the ones who do those schlocky low budget films in Italy?"
Green Music Note evilspawn2.wav Evelyn: "Dr. Zeitman has not only accomplished this, but he's managed to halt cellular decay altogether. In short this means you never grow old."
Green Music Note evilspawn3.wav Ross: "The man was a lunatic, he was deranged! They found evidence he was using drugs to cause mutations on people."
Lynn: "What do you mean, mutations?"
Green Music Note evilspawn4.wav Lynn: "It's the best thing that ever happened to me! There's nothing wrong with his serum!"
Ross: "Good God Lynn! Do you know what that stuff is doing to you? It might cause permanent mental damage!"
Green Music NoteTheme Song Listen to a clip from the soundtrack.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 

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 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipevilspawn1.mpg - 1.6m
Poor Elaine heard something buzzing around the pool while she was swimming. It was not a horsefly (those are bad enough), but the insect monster previously known as Lynn.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: [1] 2
Evil Spawn
Reply #1. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by David Fullam
Did you know that two versions of this film supposedly exist? Years ago in the pages of the late, lamented "Gorezone Magazine," Tim Lucas used to run his Video Watchdog column. He was contacted by Bobbie Breesee (star of Evil Spawn) and she told him that in no short order "Yes, the film stank, but the film makers had prepared an all new edition that fixed up a lot of the problems and made the film much better as a result." Anyone who had the orginal version could send it to the address she provided and they would get the "upgrade" totally free. Can you beleive it? These guys beat George Lucas to the punch with a special edition years before he gave the Star Wars films the same treatment.  

Has anyone out there seen the two versions of Evil Spawn? I'd like to know what they supposedly did to improve it.
Evil Spawn
Reply #2. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Chris K.
Yes, two versions of the film exist alright. Originaly made as EVIL SPAWN, the film was later changed to THE ALIEN WITHIN and featured new footage of Gordon Mitchell and a couple of other performers. The new footage was directed by none other than Fred Olen Ray. THE ALIEN WITHIN was released in the very early 90's as I can recall, but sadly no copy of this "Alternate Version" has been seen or re-released. What a shame.
Evil Spawn
Reply #3. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by David Thiel
Enjoyed the review of "Evil Spawn," as it was one of two Fred Olen Ray films on which I served as production assistant during my brief time in Hollywood. (No, the original version of "Spawn" wasn't directed by Ray, but it emerged from his production company.) It's my hand--inside a rubber insect claw--that bursts out from Brent's chest in the finale. I also donned the suit itself--actually a half suit only--for the shot of the monster entering the house. (Sadly, despite what I believed to be world-class monster emoting, my entire on-screen appearance was cut to a split-second.)

The reason that the conversation between Evelyn and Dr. Zeitman makes no sense is that it was a "generic" scene filmed with the intention of plugging into any Fred Olen Ray flick that might benefit from the cachet of an appearance by John Carradine. The actress playing Evelyn was Ray's wife at the time, and tended to pop up in his works. Thus, a scene which was shot in which Ray's wife talked to Carradine about things that sounded meaningful without any reference to actual events which might occur in a subsequent film.

More trivia: Lynn's house in the film was the actual home of the actress who played her, Bobbie Bresee. Her husband, Frank Bresee, is perhaps best known for devising the drinking board game "Pass Out."
Evil Spawn
Reply #4. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by horrorcorner
Wow i didn't even make the connection until I read your post I just posted a auction for a 1972 version of Pass Out
on ebay. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3291096491&category=118&sspagename=STRK%3AMESSE%3AIT&rd=1
Just incase anyone is interested. I heard that Frank only produced 600 or something . I don't know for sure.
Evil Spawn
Reply #5. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Ted Newsom
Actually there are at least 3 versions of this movie.  Yes, the first one was pretty lame, but in a protracted legal action, Fred Ray got the rights to the movie back from the Bresees.  When he did, he saw their "improvements" and was appalled.  Their major "addition" was a pre-credits scene of Bobbie Bresee driving around Beverly Hills in their Rolls (a car that shows up in the earlier footage supposedly belonging to another caracter entirely).  Their visual "improvements" were ridiculous.  Someone apprarently convinced them that it would make things much better visually to optically zoom in to close0ups, making an OK medium CU look like a blurry and badly frames tight CU.  Idiotic.  And Fred found that they had pedalled their "improved version" in so many markets-- unsuccessfully-- that he could not sell it anywhere, since the buyers had already seen (and rejected) the Bresee version.

He asked me to rework the thing ala Al Adamson or Corman.  I first came up with a re-do that would've meant jettisoning ALL of Bresee's scenes as the "younger" actress, since she doesn't look a day younger in them than she does as the "old" actress.  Fred thought that was too elaborate, so I came up with a secondary plot involving characters referenced in the dialogue of EVIL SPAWN but never seen.  A couple of times, I'd take a phone call sequence from the old one and intercut it with new stuff to try to bring the 2 movies together.  Also, Fred was thoughtful enough to hire Forry Ackerman, who is in one solitary shot in the 1st version.  Wearing the same shirt, he then shows up in a scene from our new stuff.

We shot on Beta SP tape and posted at FIlmLook, which was a problem.  Our stuff was actually a lot crisper and better lit than the first stuff, which had been shot on 16, edited and posted, then bumped up to 35mm, then transferred back down to video.  Nobody's complained about that -- since there are so many other wonderful things to complain about.

-- Ted Newsom,
director (God Fogive Me), The Alien Within (aka Evil Spawn)
Evil Spawn
Reply #6. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Colin G. Davis
Maybe it's because I'm damn old myself, but I want to put a word in for B Bressee. Her figure looks as if it might be her own, whereas the allegedly more attractive secretary sports the horrible silicone breasts which American men unaccountably find so sexy. Somebody please enlighten me - why are they any sexier than a glass eye or a wooden leg?
Re: Evil Spawn
Reply #7. Posted on August 13, 2008, 02:19:45 AM by Earthbound_X
Is this a remake of the Wasp women?
Exact same plot.
Re: Evil Spawn
Reply #8. Posted on November 24, 2009, 02:27:06 AM by Flu-Bird
I think your right earthbound it is a bit like WASP WOMAN
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