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The Children (1980)

  Tags: 80's, b movie, cheesy, evil kids, killer kids, small town, the children, The Children of Ravensback, Troma Entertainment

Your rating: None Average: 5.3 (4 votes)
Reviewer Rating: 

Rating #: 
Max Kalmanowicz
93 minutes
Martin Shakar, Gil Rogers, Gale Garnett, Shannon Bolin, Tracy Griswold

The Children is a great example as to why I love the 80's so much. It's just really hard to go wrong with horror from the decade; even the bad movies are fun to watch! Case-in-point, The Children -- a movie about radioactive kids who kill adults via HUGS!! Yup, you heard right. Apparently a leak at a power plant causes a strange radioactive fog to sweep the roads of a small town, where a school bus full of kids just so happens to be passing by. For one reason or another, the kids are left unharmed by the fog, but can now burn adults to death with a simple touch! And what better way than to fool an adult than by holding out ones arms as if asking for a hug, right?

I've always been keen towards the evil-kid sub-genre, sadly of which doesn't have many good films, and The Children is by no means a good movie. Though, it is a movie that's so bad that it's good (at least in terms of entertainment), because I had a lot of fun watching this cheesy lil' genre pic. How can you go wrong with killer hugs? In typical B-movie fashion, we're given no explanation as to why the kids are now radioactive-huggin' machines or why they seem determined to burn every single adult in the small town. Why adults aren't affected by the mysterious fog also remains to be seen, but you have to throw logic out the window with films like these.

Next to the silly radioactive children, we've got an interesting group of characters that our lead sheriff encounters throughout the town that offer equal hilarity and pointlessness, like the perverted idiot rednecks, the gun-toting grandma store-owner, the muscle-bound boyfriend with a ridiculous mustache, and of course, the town slut with incredibly short-shorts (awesome!), just to name a few... I think the sheriff is probably the only serious and most believable character in the movie, while everyone else was just there to be burnt to a crisp and offer some unintentional comedy relief.

Speaking of being burnt, the effects for the adults after being hugged is as you'd expect from a low-budget B-movie -- the victims will immediately start spewing this yellowish smoke around them as their skin starts to darken, and they scream in pain (in an attempt to show the viewers that they're being burnt), then the last shot is what can only be reminded of as pizza. The children themselves are reminiscent of classic zombie flicks, as they move slow and extend their arms, and are apparently even hard to kill. It's actually quite hilarious when we're revealed as how to actually kill these kids, because bullets to the head apparently won't do anything than knock them on their butts (there goes the zombie theory).

A fun cheesy B-movie that reminds us just why the 80's is a fav. decade amongst many horror fans (such as myself). Poorly scripted, horribly acted, and mediocrely directed, but I'll be damned if it wasn't entertaining! They die by hugs here people! As I said before, this movie's so bad it's good, and if you like those types of films then give this a check.

Posted on January 18, 2010 - 3:08am | FrighT MasteR