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Rated R
Copyright 1986 Empire Pictures
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 4 February 2001

The Characters:  

  • Sherman - Psychotic little kid and already taking prescription medicine for his moods. It is darn hard to convince people of your sincerity when they know you ingest 600 mg of Lithium daily. Presumed kibble.
  • Grandpa - Survivalist nut who spends his days preaching the benefits of lizard tail jerky, one of which is that the poor lizard grows the tail back, only for you to eat it again. Dissolved and then lapped up by the monster.
  • Suzy and OD - Diane Franklin and Jon Gries! Sherman's sister and her boyfriend. She goes for the Cyndi Lauper look, while he likes metal music (hence, lots of studded leather). He is turned into food, she is probably ingested as well.
  • Stanley and Racquel Putterman - Sherman's swinging parents, they're not very good at picking out compatible couples for their parties. Eaten by the monster.
  • Spiro and Cherry - Swingers that hook up with the Puttermans, also consumed.
  • Medusa - Hostess of a late night horror show and she plays it to the hilt. Straining cleavage, terrible puns, you name the stereotype. All that experience with monsters didn't help her, she gets munched.
  • Norton - Satellite dish repairman, guess what happens to him...
  • Pluthar - Alien garbage disposal expert, he has an unfortunate accident involving his environmental suit. More specifically, a structural integrity fault leaves him looking like goulash inside the contraption.
  • The Hungry Beast - The alien equivalent of a dog, but the species has this bad tendency of mutating out of control and eating everything. Not exactly the perfect pet.

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The Plot: 

Garbage is a problem for every society, but it is even more important when disposing of biological waste. Calling a rapidly mutating family pet by that name might seem callous, though I'd wager none of you have to worry about being dissolved and then lapped up by your pooch. This is the movie's basis. An advanced alien civilization has perfected the technique of converting matter to energy and beaming it randomly across the universe, using it to get rid of garbage. Doing something more interesting, like dropping it into a star or gas giant, seems to be out of the question.

Due to a minor miscalculation one such load of crap is accidentally dumped onto Earth. A transmission containing a domesticated version of Azathoth is picked up by the Puttermans' new satellite dish. While flipping channels they notice a problem in that every now and then the screen displays a slimy monster, I'm being literal and not alluding to an MTV VJ.

Mom and dad head out to meet another couple, announcing to their assembled progeny that they're "swinging tonight." One of the film's endearing qualities (let's see Ebert use that phrase in reference to a Charles Band movie) is the matter of fact ways in which the family's quirks are played out. Poor Stanley, he is all worked up for a night of wife swapping when the news breaks that Spiro likes other guys. He doesn't take the news very well.

Sherman's grandfather is another nut, with that nasty jerky and small cache of weapons. In addition, his room has a reinforced steel door (looks like a cross between a ship's watertight hatch and a bank vault) and inside he has water distillation and hydroponics at work. The only person to survive World War III is going to be a complete kook, great.

Fortunately he doesn't survive this movie, being among the first to be eaten by the Hungry Beast. By the middle of the film the monster has chewed its way through most of our cast. Nothing worse than watching someone binge eating, especially when they first liquefy their prey, then suck up the puddle of nutrients via a tongue that would make Gene Simmons proud.

By a complete fluke (read: the script) OD, Suzy, and Sherman all befriend the creature. They spend some time trying to communicate, along with teaching it table manners. Hmmm, ravenous tentacled monster that eats everything in sight, including family members. The truce is short lived.

As all this unfolds the young lad is driving the police and Medusa up the wall with phone calls. Both parties finally give up and arrive at the home, the police intent on arresting the little brat while Medusa is looking for excitement. Law enforcement proves ineffective against the creature, except for slowing it down through added mass. About now Pluthar arrives, bringing some advanced weaponry and an assurance he can capture or kill the hungry beast. Too bad that Medusa freaks out and whacks the savior with her purse, he undergoes an impressive decompression sequence just before the monster makes a final appearance.

The film has a classic b-movie plot, along with funny characterizations and a monster that can dopplegang anyone it has eaten. The mimicry was a great idea, it allows for the twisted scene in which it appears all the previously munched adults are doing something perverted.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Beating on something with a hammer does not void the warranty.
  • Satellite dishes use poor quality ball bearings in their mountings.
  • Hostesses for late night horror shows are not exactly chosen for their brains, though the criteria does begin with a "B."
  • Television sets are capable of materializing solid matter.
  • Swingers love Roman architecture, anything Roman when you get down to it.
  • Jacuzzis simulate the feel of a mother's womb.
  • Greek men are all homosexuals.
  • Some women have an easy time getting men hard, like ones out of Greek mythology with snakes in their hair.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 6 mins - I want a female statue with water fountain breasts...
  • 9 mins - Oh good, we get the Nazi channel. All Mein Kampf, all the time.
  • 16 mins - Huge satellite dish, itty bitty television set.
  • 32 mins - Her voice annoys me, hopefully their swinging involves bondage and a gag will soon be gracing her soup cooler.
  • 43 mins - Do you have any idea what you are committing your husband too? Bad wife!
  • 46 mins - A pool full of KY Jelly, the mind whirls...
  • 69 mins - Don't try disciplining that thing, it has more mouths than you can shake a stick at. Oops, I warned you.
  • 72 mins - OD's slime puddle is shaped like a guitar!
  • 78 mins - No, no, no. They would be clones.

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note terrorvision1.wav Grandpa: "I've said it before and I'll say it again. War stories and monster movies are educational, they're survival oriented!"
Green Music Note terrorvision2.wav Suzy: "Mom, can we use the jacuzzi tonight?"
Racquel: "Uh, not tonight baby, your father and I might be swinging."
Green Music Note terrorvision3.wav Pluthar trying to warn of the danger, I love it when he apologizes for possibly exterminating mankind.
Green Music Note terrorvision4.wav Policeman: "Police department, Officer Nupky speaking."
Sherman: "Hello? This is Sherman again, there's really a monster, it's eating mom and dad. Please help me!"
Green Music NoteTheme Song Listen to a clip from the soundtrack.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipterrorvision1.mpg - 3.3m
Grandpa is about to experience the joys of a liquid state first hand, right after two claws are driven into his forehead. Nothing being filmed in reverse here, no sir.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 [2] 3 4 5
Reply #9. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Dan (Trevor the Rat)
I love this movie!!!!! It has a s**tload of unusual characters consisting of a pill poppin commando wannabe kid with A.D.D. taking every subscribable drug in the book, his Big neon multi-colored haired sister (who i happened to think was pretty cute), their swingin parents who decorate the house with erotic art (including a statue fountain in the main lobby of the house with water coming out the nipples, the crazy survivalist grandpa who eats lizard tails (home grown by the way) and lives in a bomb shelter, a cartoonish blob for a monster, and the ultimate O.D. played by none other than Jon Gries (the werewolf/vamp fro Fright Night 2) with his stereotypical metal head wardrobe and surfer accent. We also got a great soundtrack including the kickass theme song which you don't usually get in low budget horror movies with the eceptions of a selected few . Great Lighting, Good acting, Nice setting, lotsa dark and gross humor, and lotsa moving around.  This remains wanna my altime favorites and must be seen to be appriciated. I think I'm gonna go watch it again...

Reply #10. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Josh
TerrorVision has been my favorite movie for about 2 years now, and each time I see it, I notice more.  What nobody has commented on yet is an obvious cross-over mistake by Chary.  When Mr. Putterman goes to check on Norm, Shary says "Oh will he be joining us?" and just then the camera shows Sherman out of bed and ready to swing.  However, I must admit that I am Happy to see so many people who like this movie.  We almost have a cult following in my town.  Love this movie and remember,"The best way to neutralize the enemy...Brain Shot."
Reply #11. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Maz
I love this film, in fact the most amazing special effect is the fact that Medusa's wonderful bazookas stayed in her bra all the way through the film
Reply #12. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by -/40!
Awww... what a wonderful peice of 80's movie-making Terrorvision was!  It had all the 80's stereotypes!

And the house makes the Frankensdtien catle on the RHPS seem... normal...

I dance by the light of the TV screen... ALL NIGHT LON!  I watch the Medusa's eyes turn green, but my own reflection I've never seen!
Reply #13. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by AlphaWoolf
Ugh.  I was one of the fifteen people that actually paid money to see this in a theatre when it came out.  There's some potential here, mainly from Diane Franklin and Gerrit Graham as the parents, but the movie spends most of its time with the kid and Grandpa so it just never gets in gear.  It's not "good bad" or "funny bad", it's just "bad bad" because it's so dull.  The apocalyptic ending is the only brainwave-producing moment to be had, the rest is just a snooze-fest.
Reply #14. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by J Richter
Oh my, what a classic this puppy is.  A DVD treatment is much-needed...but Charles Band's DVD imprint, Cult Video will likely either never release it or do NOTHING to enhance the transfer.  I'm crossing my fingers on that one.

Oh, and I the only one that thinks Mom is looking fine in this flick?  Damn, what a vixen.  Let's not forget Medusa either.  :)

Since when was Julio Iglesias a swinger anyway?  LOL
Reply #15. Posted on September 04, 2005, 01:45:24 PM by palesaint
Oh god I saw this like 10 years ago and its been stuck in my head ever since. Now I finally know the title!
Reply #16. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by James Perry
There is something about this movie that I just like!  I saw it one afternoon a few years ago on Sci Fi Channel and ended up buying a crappy used copy over the internet.  It would cost too much to return so I still have it.  Viewable...but...  Maybe a DVD will come out soon.  But it takes me back to when I used to stay up late watching horror movies as a child.  Anything with Graham in it is going to be good!  He does these things like nobody else.  Phantom of Paradise...  They should've gotten him for the shower scene in the Mystery Science Theater Movie!  
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